Monday, May 5, 2014


I went to an event recently where a speaker mentioned that more men than women make up the two "ends" of intelligence. "There are more males that are geniuses, and more that are..." and then she made a face - a stereotypical look I am still too shaken up to even describe here on this blog. This room full of over 50 intelligent, liberal-minded, "progressives," most of whom are moms, LAUGHED.

I have not been able to shake my subsequent depression. If we cannot get through to this population of people, in 2014, that it is not OK to disparage or slur ANY population of humans, then it feels hopeless that we'll ever spread the word.

I came home, fit to be tied, and tried to relax with a beer and a back episode of "Grey's Anatomy." Not once, but twice, the term "village idiot" was used. Naturally, there was no greater insult.


There is a pervasive derogatory disregard not otherwise specified going on in this country when it comes to those with an intellectual disability. Even in the special-needs world. "My kid has special needs, BUT he's really smart."

Must I fight to win the respect for my son,  even in his own world?

I'm glad your kid is smart. We need smart kids. What we don't need is a class system within a class system that separates, segregates and denigrates.

We don't need the media to go on unchallenged in their word choices and perpetuation of insulting terms.

What we don't need is people to laugh at things that aren't funny.

What we don't need is the status quo - unexamined attitudes and beliefs that serve no one, and are very harmful.

What we need is true acceptance and valuation of all.

What we need is mindfulness of our own attitudes.

What we need is love.


kario said...

Amen, sistah! You shout it from the rooftops. I hate, hate, hate that we classify people (especially kids) as "smart" or not. Every time someone says something like that, I am reminded of the Albert Einstein quote that goes something like this:

"Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will go its whole life believing it is stupid." said...

This is your Dharma, Care. Part of your deal. You came here to teach. Change is slow but you are a big part of turning the tide.

That being said, I'm so sorry it hurts so much sometimes.

Elizabeth said...

If tears could spurt from my eyes, they would. This is a perfectly righteous post, and I wish that I'd been there with you. I, too, would have felt depressed for days, but I also would have drunk a beer with you and perhaps persuaded you to watch "Call the Midwife." In the most recent episode (Season 3, Episode 5), a whole population of young adults with disabilities was dealt with -- and it was done beautifully. It will restore your hope, I think. Watch it.