Tag Archives: prejudice


Following is a conversation that took place on Facebook, apparently yesterday, between my friend Caryl and a couple other people (I’ve copied and pasted an excerpt of the convo, and deleted last names):

Brandon – Even worse are the tards that think they will ever charge to be on facebook.

4 hours ago · Like

Kristie – No shit!

3 hours ago · Like

Caryl – Sorry Kris, You know I love ya but I’ve got to call out your friend Brandon. Using the word “tards” show ignorance and it is really mean. I love someone who is not the same as everyone else and struggles to learn. He is not a “tard.” He is a lovely person who has learning difficulty. So give it a rest Brandon.

2 hours ago · Like

Kristie – Ahh he is a collage grad. I’m not worried bout him, he can handle his own..

about an hour ago · Like

Brandon – Someone’s a little uptight. It’s facebook, why don’t YOU give it a rest. I didn’t stand up in front of a special ed. class and call them retards. I was talking about stupid people with full capabilities and if you can’t handle that it is part of the vernacular of society currently you’re the one with a problem. I’m guessing that you weren’t a fan of Tropic Thunder.

about an hour ago · Like

Kristie – I thought tards was better then I wanted to say.. haha

about an hour ago · Like

Caryl – Retard is as insulting as using a racial slur. You can insult me all you want Brandon. Using that word makes you look like an ignorant ass. Nigger used to be part of the “vernacular of society,” whatever the fuck that means. You see, I am not a goody two-shoes. I just hate ignorance.

a few seconds ago · Like

You know, it just hurts.  And the rationalizations people come up with – really, they’re so predictable.  It’s either the Freedom of Speech argument, or the “I didn’t mean it like that” argument, or the “I didn’t say it to an actual retard, so what’s the problem?” argument.  This guy’s argument being a variation of the latter.

See, here’s the problem, Brandon – here’s maybe what you’re just not getting:  while you may not be using that word “in front of a special ed class,” what you are doing is comparing what you perceive to be the stupidity of “people with full capabilities” to the people with less than full capabilities.  You are making an insulting, derogatory, mean-spirited comparison: “You, person with full capabilities, are as stupid as people with disabilities!”  HA!  HA!  HA!  So funny!  It’s so clever and witty to make people who are different, who have cognitive challenges they are blameless for and powerless to not have, who will likely spend the vast majority of their lives working their asses off to try to compensate for their differences and challenges, the butt of your jokes!  And it definitely shows your intellectual superiority!

I don’t know this Brandon or this Kristie.  My friend Caryl forwarded the conversation to me because she was so upset about it.  I wish I could just blow this stuff off.  But it’s just another reminder that, by and large, the world still sees my son and people like him as less than, as nothing more than the butt of a joke or the perfect insult to throw around.

It hurts.  Even if you didn’t mean it like that.  Even if you weren’t saying it to my son.  It hurts.