Guest Editorial - The "R-word" (8/18/08)

The malicious use of the word retard - the "R-word," has regrettably become commonplace in our society.  This word is derogatory and hurtful.

Over six million people in the U.S. with intellectual disabilities are daily making meaningful and powerful contributions in their communities.  Their intellectual capacity is delayed, but they are more alike than different from you and me.

They recognize when someone ignores them or insults them. These individuals possess high self-esteem and are proud of their capabilities. They expect equal rights and respect.

These extraordinary individuals are your neighbors, classmates, and co-workers. Consider taking the time to learn more about that person you thought could not be included in a casual conversation. You might just find a new friend.

Kentuckiana's history of raising dollars for people with disabilities is legendary. Do you want to live in a community that takes pleasure and profits from belittling another human being?

 Join us to support initiatives to educate our youth and promote inclusion for all our citizens.

Speak up and take the pledge to eliminate the r-word from everyday use at

I'm Diana Merzweiler and that's my...Point of View.