Say no to the “r” word

  • Thursday, February 28, 2013

Dear Editor,
As The Journal Scene is a leader in driving local culture, we need your support, and the support of your readers, in our Spread the Word to End the Word™ campaign to help make a stand against a word that has gained popularity in culture, but is offensive to many. The “R-word” or “retard(ed)” has found a place in common language and seems to be accepted by most, despite the fact that its use, casual or otherwise, is hurtful to millions of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and those that love them.
The word hurts, even if it is not directed at a person with intellectual and developmental disabilities. For too long, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities have had to overcome the challenges society has put forth through stereotypes. It is time for a change and you and your readers can help.
Special Olympics South Carolina athletes and Best Buddies participants  accomplish great things, are members of our local communities and churches and deserve the same respect and dignity that each of us expects from others in return in our daily lives. 
Help drive much needed change that will bring acceptance and inclusion to our community – include the R-word into your “Not Fit to Print” publishing guidelines alongside other hurtful and profane words.  Your paper reaches 1000s of members of our community and with that influence you can help us get all of those members of the community to take the pledge at www.r-word.org.
If the role of a local leader like The Journal Scene is to inform and effect positive change in the community, what better way than helping us to Spread the Word to End the Word and in turn, create communities of acceptance and inclusion for all people?
Please, we need you and your readers to pledge at www.r-word.org.
Paula Byers
Special Olympics South Carolina
843-991-4174  Pbyers1@comcast.net
856 Montgomery Rd
Charleston, SC 29412
Rick Magner
Ex. Director Disabilities Board and Foundation of Charleston County
995 Morrison Drive
Suite 100
Charleston, SC 29403
843)805-5800 rmagner@dsncc.com

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