It's happening. Across the United States, people on college campuses, in high school cafeterias and workaday offices are working to “Spread the Word to End the Word.”
The goal: make people stop and think about their hurtful and disparaging use of the word “retard.”
What It's All AboutSpread the Word to End the Word is raising the consciousness of society about the dehumanizing and hurtful effects of the R-word and encourage people to pledge to stop using it.
America is being asked to declare their support for more respectful and inclusive language, specifically that referring to those with intellectual disabilities.
"The earlier we can start teaching this awareness, the easier it will be to reverse the language, " wrote James Saetern of Sacramento, California, in an e-mail to Special Olympics. "This is not just a day of awareness, but a movement to end hate as a whole."
What's Going On TodayAs of this morning, Special Olympics has heard of more than 700 events and activities happening throughout the United States – and around the world. They range from tables set up in malls, to grade-school assemblies on differences to all-day kiosks and movies at college campuses. The commitment and creativity are growing.
State ProclamationsThree U.S. states -- California, Iowa and Oklahoma--have made official proclamations about Spread the Word to End the Word day.