Thursday, June 4, 2009

My Soapbox for the Day!

This May sound a little Familiar if you already received this email from me--I apologize for repeating--but I do expand a bit so continue reading! I also feel like I should apologize for being a little preachy here...but I have heard some of my family members and friends use this word and I suppose a blog is the best way to state my opinion ...?

I've worked in the field of Human Services for several years now. I love serving the people in my community who experience disabilities. I love the work I do! I am very passionate about it! I feel like those I serve are very unique and special people, they have so much to contribute to our society! They are great examples of positive attitudes and unconditional love! Also adding my personal testimony that they are spirits of our Heavenly Father who have a special calling here on Earth. Many of us have heard the teachings in the church that these people were such amazing spirits in the pre-existence that they were sent to Earth in a body that could be protected from the temptations of Satan. They are perfect spirits that will return to our Heavenly Father's presence automatically without passing through judgement. (Now I am not sure if it is official church doctrine but I have heard it many times) I know they are amazing spirits--you can just feel the spirit when you are in their presence! They are first a person just like all of us and children of God; secondly they experience a disability.

This population are such amazing people , for many years they have been titled as "Retarded". This is a word has also taken on a double meaning, in casual conversation. I have heard my family members and friends say it so casually in personal conversations, and I am asking everyone to show some respect...don't use that word! At least don't use it in my presence. In casual conversation replace the word with some other degrading term. If you are referring to a person who has a disability, refer to them as: Intellectually disabled, developmentally disabled...someone who experiences a disability, avoid calling them Retarded or handicapped.

If you just take a moment and consider what the word means and the people who represent that population and join this movement that the Special Olympics is sponsoring! Pledge that you will not use the word "Retarded" in an inappropriate way! Pass this on to your friends or don't be afraid to correct people when they use it!
Now I hope I have successful made you all feel super guilty! I will step down from my soap box!

1 comment:

  1. Sarah, you are so awesome. Having a developmentally disabled sister myself, it really helps to know others are on my side when it comes to treating her with respect! I usually refer to her as "special needs" because she truly is special!