Monday, 19 August 2013

Open response to "Pissed Off Mother"

Dear Pissed Off Mother,

I'm afraid your rant was pointless. You are not the first to tell any of us that our children are loud, annoying, in need of discipline, disgusting, wastes of space that should never have been born. Nor, unfortunately, will you be the last. Mental and Developmental Health are the last bastions of acceptable discrimination. Some people, like yourself, chose to be blatant, and I'm sure you'll receive an entire planets worth of backlash. But most discriminate in ways they don't even acknowledge themselves. Every time someone says "That joke is so retarded", they are proving that it is ACCEPTABLE to discriminate against those who have the least ability to fight back. Would you substitute the N-word for the R-word? NEVER. You'd know that was unacceptable ( well for you, Pissed Off Mother at least not acceptable in public). It is without thought that you pull your child aside in daycare so they don't "catch it", whispering softly "its ok baby, its ok" to your child (who has NO clue WHAT you are worried about) while simultaneously preaching to your neighbours how Johnny plays with a boy with autism at school, Johnny is so wonderful. 

Johnny IS wonderful. 

SO are OUR children. 

You, and Moms and Dads like you, are damaging your own children beyond repair. You are injecting into them the same poison you carry around in yourself. No one is exempt from challenges. Our childrens' are just more obvious. So when you teach your children, actively like you, Pissed Off Mother, or the others who do it more potently, by example rather than outright venom- those who stare at a child in a wheelchair, who mock an adult with disabilities as they go past, who gawk instead of helping a mother trying to help her child through a meltdown, those of you who use the word 'retard' or 'retarded' as if it is a common utterance rather than a slur, you are much more poisonous to your children than anyone else. Because, you see, you THINK you are accepting and open, but you are not, and you are teaching your children to reject anyone with a challenge. I shall now repeat. NO HUMAN BEING IS EXEMPT FROM CHALLENGE. Our children's challenges are obvious. What happens when your own child faces their own obstacles? You have taught them that is cause for stigmatization. What will they do when YOU face a challenge? 

You will age my friend. What will happen then? 

Our children without challenges learn incredible life lessons thanks to people like you. They learn there are "good" people out there who aren't truly good. They learn to distinguish who is, and whom isn't worth their attention. 

My dear lady, alas, we will forget about you. There are so many like yourself that we encounter day in and day out, that eventually you become less than human to us. Was she a woman? Was he tall? I don't know, just some animal. Don't know. Don't care. 

Sounds like the way you look at our children. 


Scary thought, isn't it?

Lori Pollard
One Fierce and Proud Autism Mommy!

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