Should Ann Coulter be fired for public comments?

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smsturner's picture
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Should Ann Coulter be fired for public comments?

http://http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/lookout/open-letter-ann-coulter-special-olympics-133341583.html

Should someone so in the public eye be fired for offensive words?

If it was somethng like the 'n-word'?

I personally find it upsetting that someone in public news could still even use the word '******' in reference to anyone at all. If I were in charge of a company I would certainly worry about our reputation falling because of her obvious callousness, and would consider it protecting our reputation to have to let her go.

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She's always out to "shock" I can't stand her.

This was when I felt it was over the top. There was no need to use that word. At all. I would fire her but I don't know if she will be.

GloriaInTX's picture
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Sorry I don't think using the word retarded is the same. You can say that word without meaning it to apply to mentally handicapped person. In fact many times it can be said without applying to a person at all. I can say "that rule is retarded". The 'n' word has no other meaning than an offensive term for a black person. People like Ann Coulter who grew up in my generation have used that term from the time we were kids, it is not that easy to just change your habits and stop using a word because people are all of a sudden offended by it.

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And the fact is that when I was growing up Retarded wasn't even an offensive word at all. It is one of those words that has progessed into something different over time. And I grew up with a girl that had Downs who was like sister to me.

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Yes words change all the time. We all know what she meant by this Gloria. It's a hurtful word to many people and their families and she knows it. You know it. It is just the same to them and others as the "n" word.

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"Jessica80" wrote:

Yes words change all the time. We all know what she meant by this Gloria. It's a hurtful word to many people and their families and she knows it. You know it. It is just the same to them and others as the "n" word.

Of course we know what she meant by it. But we also know that she didn't say it to offend people with Down's. I do kind of agree with them though I would be offended to be put in the same class as Obama too.

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I think it is unfortunate that she would chose you use that word, but everyone makes mistakes. I would still think it is up to her boss whether or not to fire her. A more prudent option in my opinion, would maybe a mandatory class on words that are impolite to say.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Sorry I don't think using the word retarded is the same. You can say that word without meaning it to apply to mentally handicapped person. In fact many times it can be said without applying to a person at all. I can say "that rule is retarded". The 'n' word has no other meaning than an offensive term for a black person. People like Ann Coulter who grew up in my generation have used that term from the time we were kids, it is not that easy to just change your habits and stop using a word because people are all of a sudden offended by it.

Yes it is the same. EXACTLY the same. Using it as a slang term for anything that is stupid is offensive. That's precisely the reason it's offensive. Because you are taking a word, that could actually be used to describe someone accurately and using it in a derogatory manner to describe something else. It's become slang like the word "queer" has become slang. It used to be a normal word used not offensively. Now it's morphed into a majorly offensive term. Here in our school, it's the one derogatory term you do not dare use.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Of course we know what she meant by it. But we also know that she didn't say it to offend people with Down's. I do kind of agree with them though I would be offended to be put in the same class as Obama too.

She didn't say it to offend people with Down's? What in the world does that mean?? She used it as a put down for Obama. I don't care that she wanted to put down Obama but alluding to the fact that calling him the "r" word IS a put down IS what is insulting.

Please don't turn this into some crazy political debate. She was wrong. End of story.

smsturner's picture
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Lol! i guess it's definitely offensive these days as this system stars out the word! Didn't realize that....

wlillie's picture
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I don't understand something and maybe one of you can explain it to me. If we aren't allowed to call mentally handicapped people retarded and still be politically correct then the term shouldn't offend anyone since it doesn't apply to them anymore. Logically. so which is it? Is it a term reserved for the mentally handicapped making it offensive to use it for people who aren't actually retarded but as a negative name or is it acceptable to call someone mentally handicapped that if you just use it as a term and not as a negative name? And if anyone understands what I'm trying to say and can phrase it better, I'd really appreciate it. I'm exhausted.

eta-I forgot to answer the debate! I think it should be left 100% up to the employers and how much flack they want to take for their employee because we have that whole freedom of speech thing going on....

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That's not how it works Lillie. They don't use the term anymore because it has negative connotations. There are better terms to use then mental retardation which is why the change for medical terminology. It's not that people who have disabilities are saying "HEY! we are the only ones who can use this word!"

Taking a group of people that have intellectual disabilities, using an outdated term that grouped them incorrectly, as an attempt for a put down is heinous.

GloriaInTX's picture
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Personally I'm sick of all this politically correct stuff and this person or that person is offended it you use the wrong word. Get over it.

ClairesMommy's picture
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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Personally I'm sick of all this politically correct stuff and this person or that person is offended it you use the wrong word. Get over it.

That's pretty sensitive. Nice.

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"Jessica80" wrote:

That's not how it works Lillie. They don't use the term anymore because it has negative connotations. There are better terms to use then mental retardation which is why the change for medical terminology. It's not that people who have disabilities are saying "HEY! we are the only ones who can use this word!"

Taking a group of people that have intellectual disabilities, using an outdated term that grouped them incorrectly, as an attempt for a put down is heinous.

That's not what I asked. The meaning of the term has morphed from being (acceptable to unacceptable) from (mentally handicapped people to an ugly term). If the original meaning of the word is not used anymore, then why would anyone associate the new meaning with an insult to mentally handicapped people?

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"ClairesMommy" wrote:

That's pretty sensitive. Nice.

Thank you.

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"ClairesMommy" wrote:

That's pretty sensitive. Nice.

It is freaking ridiculous. If you think about it, people should be responsible for their own emotions. Expecting people to tiptoe around what you are going through is very very selfish. Like the tolerant/intolerant debate. Like a girl on my facebook is dealing with infertility and I understand she's upset but she blasted someone for complaining about their child's behavior because she said that she only wishes she had a child to complain about. I understand having hurt feelings, but expecting everyone around you to stop talking about whatever it is that is your sensitivie point in our society has gotten Out Of Control. Because I would almost bet the woman who was complaining (on her own facebook page, mind you), probably apologized. That's not OK. Trying to figure out whether you should say black or African American any time race is brought up? That's not OK.

I'm military and get offended when people use the term baby-killer, but it's not their responsibility to not use the term (except when there are rules on a mommy board. ;)), it's mine to process it and relegate it to where it needs to go. I'm also a WOHM. It's not the SAHM's job to make sure I don't get offended when they put that they are "Full Time Mom"'s, it's mine to process it and relegate it to where it needs to go. I'm a blonde and am sick to death of the ditz/dumb jokes- Still not someone else's job to make sure I don't overhear one, it's MINE to process.

eta=Ann wasn't insulting mentally handicapped people, she was insulting the President. She was using the new meaning of the term to show that his thinking was slow.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Personally I'm sick of all this politically correct stuff and this person or that person is offended it you use the wrong word. Get over it.

So you are never offended by any word ever?

ETA:

"wlillie" wrote:

It is freaking ridiculous. If you think about it, people should be responsible for their own emotions. Expecting people to tiptoe around what you are going through is very very selfish. Like the tolerant/intolerant debate. Like a girl on my facebook is dealing with infertility and I understand she's upset but she blasted someone for complaining about their child's behavior because she said that she only wishes she had a child to complain about. I understand having hurt feelings, but expecting everyone around you to stop talking about whatever it is that is your sensitivie point in our society has gotten Out Of Control. Because I would almost bet the woman who was complaining (on her own facebook page, mind you), probably apologized. That's not OK. Trying to figure out whether you should say black or African American any time race is brought up? That's not OK.

I'm military and get offended when people use the term baby-killer, but it's not their responsibility to not use the term (except when there are rules on a mommy board. ;)), it's mine to process it and relegate it to where it needs to go. I'm also a WOHM. It's not the SAHM's job to make sure I don't get offended when they put that they are "Full Time Mom"'s, it's mine to process it and relegate it to where it needs to go. I'm a blonde and am sick to death of the ditz/dumb jokes- Still not someone else's job to make sure I don't overhear one, it's MINE to process.

eta=Ann wasn't insulting mentally handicapped people, she was insulting the President. She was using the new meaning of the term to show that his thinking was slow.

It is NUTS to call this ridiculous and selfish! ESPECIALLY this particular word. Because this is what we need to do to protect the feelings of the most vulnerable in this society. These kids/adults have the most sensitive emotions and don't understand alot of this, all they understand is that someone is being hurtful to them. How can someone whose brain never develops beyond a 5 or 10 year old possibly be responsible for their own emotions?

At the second bold: Don't you understand that by even using the word at all, she is insulting and offending these people??

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I get that she was insulting the President. In the process she also insulted an entire group of people for "thinking slow"

Seriously, it may not be something that you get until you live it. Lumping kids and adults together without knowing who they are or what they are capable of only makes YOU (general you) look like you're "thinking slow". I find your comments and Gloria's comments sad to be honest. It's not about being "politically correct" It's about understanding that there is no need to use this word as an insult as there plenty of others out there and that it IS hurtful.

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I don't think she'll be fired. Ann Coulter says nasty crap all of the time; I think that's her whole appeal. I don't get it, but I'm not exactly her target audience.

As for whether or not it is offensive to call someone a "******" as a way of calling them stupid, I'll let this amazing fellow speak for himself.

An Open Letter to Ann Coulter | The World of Special Olympics

The following is a guest post in the form of an open letter from Special Olympics athlete and global messenger John Franklin Stephens to Ann Coulter after this tweet during last night’s Presidential debate.

Dear Ann Coulter,
Come on Ms. Coulter, you aren’t dumb and you aren’t shallow. So why are you continually using a word like the R-word as an insult?

I’m a 30 year old man with Down syndrome who has struggled with the public’s perception that an intellectual disability means that I am dumb and shallow. I am not either of those things, but I do process information more slowly than the rest of you. In fact it has taken me all day to figure out how to respond to your use of the R-word last night.

I thought first of asking whether you meant to describe the President as someone who was bullied as a child by people like you, but rose above it to find a way to succeed in life as many of my fellow Special Olympians have.

Then I wondered if you meant to describe him as someone who has to struggle to be thoughtful about everything he says, as everyone else races from one snarkey sound bite to the next.

Finally, I wondered if you meant to degrade him as someone who is likely to receive bad health care, live in low grade housing with very little income and still manages to see life as a wonderful gift.

Because, Ms. Coulter, that is who we are – and much, much more.

After I saw your tweet, I realized you just wanted to belittle the President by linking him to people like me. You assumed that people would understand and accept that being linked to someone like me is an insult and you assumed you could get away with it and still appear on TV.

I have to wonder if you considered other hateful words but recoiled from the backlash.

Well, Ms. Coulter, you, and society, need to learn that being compared to people like me should be considered a badge of honor.
No one overcomes more than we do and still loves life so much.

Come join us someday at Special Olympics. See if you can walk away with your heart unchanged.

A friend you haven’t made yet,
John Franklin Stephens
Global Messenger
Special Olympics Virginia

wlillie's picture
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I read it. Do you really think that he would have been offended if someone hadn't told him he needed to be? Seriously?

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"Alissa_Sal" wrote:

I don't think she'll be fired. Ann Coulter says nasty crap all of the time; I think that's her whole appeal. I don't get it, but I'm not exactly her target audience.

As for whether or not it is offensive to call someone a "******" as a way of calling them stupid, I'll let this amazing fellow speak for himself.

An Open Letter to Ann Coulter | The World of Special Olympics

I love this letter.

I agree that she isn't going to get fired. Could a celebrity get fired for saying something like that? Sure. It all depends on who hired the person and for what reason. But considering what Ann's 'job description' is....i don't think she needs to be worried about getting fired.

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"smsturner" wrote:

So you are never offended by any word ever?

ETA:

It is NUTS to call this ridiculous and selfish! ESPECIALLY this particular word. Because this is what we need to do to protect the feelings of the most vulnerable in this society. These kids/adults have the most sensitive emotions and don't understand alot of this, all they understand is that someone is being hurtful to them. How can someone whose brain never develops beyond a 5 or 10 year old possibly be responsible for their own emotions?

At the second bold: Don't you understand that by even using the word at all, she is insulting and offending these people??

Who told them the words had to be offensive? The word should never have been made to what it is and I can guarantee that no one who WOULD naturally be offended by the word weren't the ones who made it htat way.

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"wlillie" wrote:

Who told them the words had to be offensive? The word should never have been made to what it is and I can guarantee that no one who WOULD naturally be offended by the word weren't the ones who made it htat way.

How much does it matter what you think should have happened to the word, compared to what it is. Every word has a history of development and use-age. And what that history IS (not what you think it should be) is what is going to affect how people take it now.

Words are meant to use as communication....every word has meaning and it is unique to its history and evolution over time. Unfortunately for all the people who want to keep using it today, it has taken on pretty negative meaning, so why not just deal with it and accept that. Find a different word to use that won't be hurtful to people...isn't that more important?

And its not like the reason it is hurtful is completely arbitrary. Its not the same as if one day those who had a mental disability started taking offense to the word 'potato' or something.

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Honestly I doubt that he wrote that letter without some outside help. One of the best qualities of people with Down's syndrome is that they are so open and honest and loving about everything. This letter is very sarcastic and the way it is worded just doesn't seem right to me. You can flame me for it all you want and they very well may have been his sentiments, but I really think someone helped to word the letter.

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"wlillie" wrote:

I read it. Do you really think that he would have been offended if someone hadn't told him he needed to be? Seriously?

"GloriaInTX" wrote:

Honestly I doubt that he wrote that letter without some outside help. One of the best qualities of people with Down's syndrome is that they are so open and honest and loving about everything. This letter is very sarcastic and the way it is worded just doesn't seem right to me. You can flame me for it all you want and they very well may have been his sentiments, but I really think someone helped to word the letter.

Maybe you don't mean it this way, but the way these comments come off is that you doubt he's smart enough to know when someone is saying something that is offensive to him, and be able to respond appropriately.

I think, having grown up with Down's, he's probably heard the R word once or twice, and knows that it's used in a derogatory way to mean "stupid" and "slow", both in reference to people who actually have a disability, and also to people that we want to put down by comparing them to people who have disabilities.

Imagine if you knew that someone thought poorly of you, and that when they wanted to put anyone down, they said "You're such a Gloria!" or "You're such a Lillie!" That's kind of how people use the R word these days. I happen to think he's smart enough to get that and articulate it.

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This was in my FB food...very timely

The Unknown Contributor: It Wasn’t Meant That Way

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"Alissa_Sal" wrote:

Maybe you don't mean it this way, but the way these comments come off is that you doubt he's smart enough to know when someone is saying something that is offensive to him, and be able to respond appropriately.

I think, having grown up with Down's, he's probably heard the R word once or twice, and knows that it's used in a derogatory way to mean "stupid" and "slow", both in reference to people who actually have a disability, and also to people that we want to put down by comparing them to people who have disabilities.

Imagine if you knew that someone thought poorly of you, and that when they wanted to put anyone down, they said "You're such a Gloria!" or "You're such a Lillie!" That's kind of how people use the R word these days. I happen to think he's smart enough to get that and articulate it.

It has nothing to do with whether he is smart enough to write the letter. It is the sarcastic quality and tone of the letter that makes me think he had help. I know and have know quite a few people with Down's syndrome and that is just not the way they are.

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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

It has nothing to do with whether he is smart enough to write the letter. It is the sarcastic quality and tone of the letter that makes me think he had help. I know and have know quite a few people with Down's syndrome and that is just not the way they are.

I thought the letter was very powerful and beautifully written.

smsturner's picture
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"GloriaInTX" wrote:

It has nothing to do with whether he is smart enough to write the letter. It is the sarcastic quality and tone of the letter that makes me think he had help. I know and have know quite a few people with Down's syndrome and that is just not the way they are.

You know quite a few people with down's syndrome and you are ready to say you give up on being politically correct around them? Ouch. Are they your friends? Would you care if you hurt them by not taking the effort?

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I also thought the letter was eloquent and sincere.

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Another person missing the sarcasm in that letter.

wlillie's picture
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Lets get on the gravy train Gloria. Shouldn't mute people be offended by Mr. John Franklin Stephens use of the term dumb? Isn't that JUST as offensive as the term ******? Seriously?

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"wlillie" wrote:

Lets get on the gravy train Gloria. Shouldn't mute people be offended by Mr. John Franklin Stephens use of the term dumb? Isn't that JUST as offensive as the term ******? Seriously?

Words obviously evolve over time. The fact that this site stars out one but not the other should kind of make it clear that it's not just as offensive as whatever it was you said. lol

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"wlillie" wrote:

Lets get on the gravy train Gloria. Shouldn't mute people be offended by Mr. John Franklin Stephens use of the term dumb? Isn't that JUST as offensive as the term ******? Seriously?

As an aside, I know many, many Deaf people. They are very offended by the term "deaf and dumb"

Alissa_Sal's picture
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I guess I don't really understand the opposition. Some words are offensive. It's silly to pretend otherwise. I can see using a word and not really thinking about it, just because it's common. That's exactly what happens with the r word. But then when someone (especially a member of the group that it is offensive to, like John Frankin Stephens) says "this word is hurtful to us" I just can't understand clinging to it, like "I'm allowed to say whatever whack crap I want and no one can tell me differently!!!" Well of course you can, if you don't care about hurting people's feelings. You always have that right. I just don't understand why you want to use it, or why you would get mad about people calling you on it. Like are you really that in love with that word?

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"smsturner" wrote:

Words obviously evolve over time. The fact that this site stars out one but not the other should kind of make it clear that it's not just as offensive as whatever it was you said. lol

That's one of the stupidest things I've ever read. And so very hypocritical that I can't believe you had the balls to type it out. Wow.

wlillie's picture
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And Alissa, it's not hte being offended by the word. It's the blowing **** out of proportion and pretending like your issue is just as important to all those around you. It's NOT. Unless you are in a support group for that very issue, then you need to learn to deal with things that offend you *by yourself* and not expect other people to cater to your issue. Kind of like when my son was little. He didn't know that if he fell down he could get extra cuddles (not that he was ever denied any). He just got back up, looked around to see if anybody saw, and went aobut his business. Until one day my MIL flipped out. No blood, no real pain, but she screeched and ran over to check on him, swooped him up and was almost in tears asking if he was OK.

If people don't make a huge deal out of words like these, they lose their meaning. It's just that simple. QUIT making it an issue and it won't be.

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I hate political correctness, really hate it. That being said, retarded is a word that people need to know is offensive. I have a nephew that has a global developmental delay, so he is mentally retarded. I find that for the most part the mentally delayed group of people in our country seem to the be the group that people feel very comfortable with making fun of, and they have no control over their life circumstances.

Please, as an auntie of a little boy that is really the light of our family, do not use that word to describe things or people that are negative.

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But Lillie...it's not blowing s*it out of proportion at all. I'm not telling you that you can't use the term sofa because I'm offended by that. That is an innocuous word (right now Smile )

This word is clearly not. We are giving you personal and non personal examples as to why and you are stuck on the fact you *should* be allowed to say it. Of course you can. Just know that many people find it rude, offensive and hurtful. If that is okay with you so be it. You're right, it's a free country and you are free to be a jerk if you want to be.

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"Jessica80" wrote:

But Lillie...it's not blowing s*it out of proportion at all. I'm not telling you that you can't use the term sofa because I'm offended by that. That is an innocuous word (right now Smile )

This word is clearly not. We are giving you personal and non personal examples as to why and you are stuck on the fact you *should* be allowed to say it. Of course you can. Just know that many people find it rude, offensive and hurtful. If that is okay with you so be it. You're right, it's a free country and you are free to be a jerk if you want to be.

I find you calling people who use the r word (believe it or not, I don't say it and ask others not to) "jerks" rude, offensive and hurtful. Don't do it anymore or you're an idiot.

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When you purposely use a word that hurts others, while knowing it hurts others, it makes you a jerk.

There, I'm an "idiot" Whatever.

ftmom's picture
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"Jessica80" wrote:

When you purposely use a word that hurts others, while knowing it hurts others, it makes you a jerk.

There, I'm an "idiot" Whatever.

I would agree with this. It is the purposeful use of a hurtful word that gets me here. Her first comment may have been an innocent misstep, however she not only didnt apologize, but continued to use the word after it had been pointed out to her that it was hurtful. That makes this lady a jerk. Though I get the impression that is part of her job.

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"wlillie" wrote:

That's one of the stupidest things I've ever read. And so very hypocritical that I can't believe you had the balls to type it out. Wow.

This is completely uncalled for.

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"wlillie" wrote:

And Alissa, it's not hte being offended by the word. It's the blowing **** out of proportion and pretending like your issue is just as important to all those around you. It's NOT. Unless you are in a support group for that very issue, then you need to learn to deal with things that offend you *by yourself* and not expect other people to cater to your issue. Kind of like when my son was little. He didn't know that if he fell down he could get extra cuddles (not that he was ever denied any). He just got back up, looked around to see if anybody saw, and went aobut his business. Until one day my MIL flipped out. No blood, no real pain, but she screeched and ran over to check on him, swooped him up and was almost in tears asking if he was OK.

If people don't make a huge deal out of words like these, they lose their meaning. It's just that simple. QUIT making it an issue and it won't be.

So do you feel that way about anyone who is ever offended by anything? Like you just expect that no one will ever react to anything they hear that is offensive or hurtful, or if they do react, too bad for them?

Just seems like a pretty extreme position to take.

But again, you're free to use the word if you want, if you don't care that it hurts people's feelings. No one is going to take you to jail for doing so.

GloriaInTX's picture
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What seems so silly to me is that people that are so worried about saying the "R" word routinely use the "F" word and other cuss words that I would NEVER use. Come on that word is more offensive than those? I don't really use the word retarded either but I'm not offended if someone does.

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Yes Gloria, the r words is that much more offensive to me than the F word. The F word isn't related back to a specific group of people. Using a group of people to insult someone...that's the offensive part.

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"Jessica80" wrote:

Yes Gloria, the r words is that much more offensive to me than the F word. The F word isn't related back to a specific group of people. Using a group of people to insult someone...that's the offensive part.

Whatever floats your boat I guess. I think calling someone something that is a derogatory term about a sexual act is much worse.

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"Jessica80" wrote:

Yes Gloria, the r words is that much more offensive to me than the F word. The F word isn't related back to a specific group of people. Using a group of people to insult someone...that's the offensive part.

I wonder if this is a regional thing? While I do not think it is nice or necessary, I know several people who would think nothing of saying the "R" word that would not dream of using the "F" word.

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It might be. Someone dropping the f bomb constantly is awful to me too but I'm not offended in the sense that the R word or N word offends me.

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"Alissa_Sal" wrote:

So do you feel that way about anyone who is ever offended by anything? Like you just expect that no one will ever react to anything they hear that is offensive or hurtful, or if they do react, too bad for them?

Just seems like a pretty extreme position to take.

But again, you're free to use the word if you want, if you don't care that it hurts people's feelings. No one is going to take you to jail for doing so.

No, I just don't think it's newsworthy and don't think people should all jump on the bandwagon even if it does offend you. Again, I don't use the word, but I'm definitely not going to lower myself IRL to calling names because somebody says something I don't like. It's childish as is holding on to a grudge or acting like the world should cater to your wants. It's ridiculous. You can't say people shouldn't use the word ****** because it hurts peoples feelings and then use the words dumb and jerk. It just shows EXACTLY how stupid it is to try to have everyone be politically correct instead of expecting people to learn how to handle their emotions when they are offended.

Seriously, the letter liberals are posting all over the internet about the R word has the word dumb in it which offends another whole subset of people and they don't even notice because it's not the new cause yet. Freaking ridiculous.

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