My Exchange with D.L. Hughley About the Word “Retarded”

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Have you ever seen the comedy special Reset starring comedian D.L. Hughley? I watched it today. During the last segment of the special, I was offended and disturbed to hear him use the word “retarded” to refer to his son who has Aspergers. My heart sank even further as the audience cracked up laughing. The whole thing left a bad taste in my mouth. As a mom of a son with autism, I am offended and rightfully so.

As the closing credits rolled, I was still upset and decided to log on to twitter to let Hughley know how I felt. This is how our exchange went:

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When someone uses derogatory words to describe people with disabilities, it hurts. I was even more baffled by the fact that this word was being used by a parent toward his own child. Some may think that Hughley has a right to call his child whatever he wants.  I know I have a right to stop supporting someone who uses derogatory words to describe people with special needs in his public performances. The sad truth is that Hughley is not the first media personality to do this and he won’t be the last.

I have listened to Hughley since he was the host of Comic View on BET. I went to see him when he did the Kings of Comedy Tour. Today he has lost a fan. Like he said, he will live and so will I.

Before I leave, I want to leave you with the The Spread the Word to End the Word campaign. Click here to learn more about the campaign to end the use of the hurtful word, retarded.

What are your thoughts on the use of the r-word? What would you have said to D.L. Hughley? Please share. I look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Miz Kp

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