Political correctness. Society’s sensitivity training. I don’t like it. It seems like anything is a “trigger” these days for someone to feel insulted or offended. Recently, I’ve seen illustrations of mental illness and how the public uses phrases like “I’m depressed” or “You’re so OCD” versus what it’s really like, and I have to say, I don’t like those either. The intent behind it is to say that the public downplays mental illness and by using these phrases they invalidate real mental illnesses. It’s just another step following in the path of don’t use the word retard, banning books like Tom Sawyer because they use the word nigger (yes, I did just type that), to “gyp someone” is a slur, and asking if you stuttered when asked to repeat yourself is wrong, among many others.
In my opinion, people need to get over themselves. I’m aware this isn’t going to be a popular opinion. But guess what? Everyone is entitled to their own opinion whether or not you agree with it. And that’s my opinion. Society is too damn “fragile” today with political correctness.
I have depression. I don’t get upset when someone says they’re depressed because the finished their ice cream and wish there was more.
I have a visual impairment. I don’t get offended when people say that they’re blind and they’re clearly not.
According to my doctor, I’m morbidly obese. Do I give a shit when people say they’re SO FAT when they’re actually half my size? No.
I have a delayed processing speed and ask “what?” A lot because of it, but I’m only mildly annoyed when people ask if I have a hearing problem. Okay you got me on that one. I’m sensitive there.
But honestly. The saying about sticks and stones has gone out the window in favor of words really do hurt. Well I say that’s bullshit. Raise your kids to have a little thicker skin. Language is ever evolving, and if we keep feeding into this mentality where everyone gets a trophy and words really do hurt because our children are just too damn sensitive, then one day there will be NO WORDS.
Let’s look at it this way. Bobby is a smart kid who learns quickly and is perfect in every way. Mikey has low intelligence and is developmentally delayed. We can’t say he’s retarded, even though that word actually means slow! Can we say he’s slow? Stupid? What word can we use to describe him? Soon we won’t be able to say he’s delayed either. And what does that leave us with? Describing Mikey as the same as Bobby?
I think what it really boils down to when it comes to the blind, deaf, mentally ill, or developmentally disabled is that the people who drive this agenda want people with disabilities to feel like they’re the same as those without. And they’re not. We’re not. And we should celebrate that. Yes, we’re different. And there isn’t anything wrong with that.
So grow a thicker skin and teach others to do the same. Because there’s so much more to worry about in our lives than the influence and meaning of words.