LatinaLista -- Everyone knows that words hurt people -- especially words that morph into labels.
One popular example is the word "retarded."
For too long in our society, "retarded" had been used to label people who are mentally challenged. Over time, it has devolved into an ill-humored or mean-spirited insult, depending on the usage.
The word "retarded" has even gone from being a descriptor to a noun used by insensitive people who get a kick out of calling others who can't keep up with them "retards."
Recently, the word was in the news when former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin took offense at a White House staffer using the term -- though she made excuses for Rush Limbaugh when he did.
The bottom line is it's not good taste or good example to use the "R-word." To remind people and raise awareness of just how offensive the word actually is to people who are intellectually challenged, today has been designated as the Spread the Word to End the Word Day.
At the Spread the Word to End the Word Day website, visitors can sign a pledge to promote the elimination of the r-word, the tools to hold awareness rallies and there's even a R-word counter that so far has registered over 27,000 times people on the web have used the R-word.
It's time to replace the R-word with another R-word -- respect!