Usually, I'm one of those people who are sitting at home, shaking their heads ruefully, when I hear about how everyone is mad because some pea-brained celebrity made some inappropriate comment during an interview.
You know what I'm talking about -- someone uses a racial slur, or slams homosexuality, and the media feeding frenzy begins. It's played over and over and over and over and over on every network in the universe. Aliens on the planet Zoobork hear about it. Sometimes, it blows over, and sometimes a career can be shaken. (Remember Imus?)
I always sit around and say how the media makes it worse, let it drop, etc, etc.
Well, I'm a hypocrite, in case any of my regular readers haven't figured it out, and I'm about to prove it to the tenth degree.
Recently, Margaret Cho, a comedienne, did an interview in which she declared she didn't "necessarily want to have a retard" baby. She's older, and I assume she's talking about the increased risk for birth defects as a woman moves along in her childbearing years.
This comment is possibly one of the stupidest things I have ever heard anyone say, and that, my friends, is saying a lot. I refuse to believe anyone could be this ignorant. She said it with intent -- period. Was it for the publicity, or is this really the depth of her mind? Obviously, having a retarded baby is the least of her problems.
I hate that word -- retard. I hate it. Hate, hate, hate. It has a real definition, and until very recently was commonly used in medical circles. But that doesn't matter -- I hate it. People use it, and they sure as hell aren't using it medically. They use it to imply someone is stupid or ridiculous.
In other words, they think my daughter is stupid and ridiculous.
In other words, Margaret Cho thinks my daughter is stupid and ridiculous.
I wonder if this little slur from this big idiot will get as much negative attention as, say, Imus' referring to some black women's basketball players as "nappy-headed ho's?" I sort of doubt it. I guess the only ripples will be from people like me who have very personal feelings about these retarded babies, kids and adults.
I mean, purely hypothetically, if someone were to write something about Margaret Cho, and they were to use a racial slur, like Slant-eye or Buckethead, why, that would be very offensive, wouldn't it? Lots of people would be offended, and maybe whoever said those things would be dragged over the coals. So of course, you would never want to use those types of racial slurs. If you did, it would all just be in good fun, just a little joke, just pushing the boundaries to prove your edginess, right? No harm done -- no need to get upset, right?
In reality, I know I'm supposed to take the high road here, and that comments from such a small mind should just roll right off my back. Oh, but it's hard. When I sit here and look at my daughter, and I think of how much I love her and how beautiful she is, I just want to snatch that bitch Margaret Cho bald.
Maybe there are lots of people who feel like her.
I understand that everyone wants to have a healthy baby, and no one would wish to have a child with any type of problem. But if there's one thing I've learned in this life, it's that there are no guarantees, and let me go one step more -- I would not trade my retarded daughter for ten "normal" kids. Here's why:
- She lives every day in the moment -- no worries about yesterday or tomorrow.
- She gets mad, but she gets over it. No grudge holding for her.
- She loves who she loves, unconditionally. She has no prejudice, no bias, no preconceived notions about anyone. (If only Margaret Cho could be so fortunate.)
- She gives affection freely.
- She has taught me what a gift life is, how important it is to be thankful for each thing we are given, no matter how small.
- When she's excited, she jumps and laughs and squeals. She lives her joy with childlike abandon. We're all too hung-up with ourselves to ever really give ourselves over to happiness and joy. We're the ones missing out.
- It's hard sometimes, but it's my privilege to take care of her. She depends totally on me -- what an awesome responsibility!
- She is satisfied with so little. It takes almost nothing to make her happy, where as all of us are never satisfied.
If all of these things come with being retarded, maybe we should all be so fortunate as to be counted among that number. There are obviously worse things to be.
A narrow-minded idiot, for example.
P.S. In case you missed the message: Suck it, Margaret Cho. You don't deserve a retarded child.
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