With criticism of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel’s comment to some left-wing groups that some of their ideas were “retarded,” we now see the left deservedly getting a taste of their own political correctness intolerance. Now Rush Limbaugh is getting criticized for merely saying what he’s been saying for many years, that the left and their ideas really are “retarded,” as well as “kooks” and “loony tunes.” We need to separate the two main uses of the word “retarded,” into what it actually means, and it’s use in “slang” language.
First, the Merriam-Webster Dictionary Online defines “retarded” as:
(sometimes offensive) : slow or limited in intellectual or emotional development or academic progress
According to several online sources, the current diagnostic criteria for “Mental Retardation” in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-iv), include IQ of below 70, limitations in “adaptive” functioning, and beginning before age 18. (When I was in college, the DSM-iii referred to IQ of below 80. I guess they had to lower it to give politicians and bureaucrats a break.)
There are people with developmental cognitive functioning problems, and they shouldn’t be teased or humiliated for that. That’s a completely different situation from criticizing someone who presents dumb ideas, like Obommunists and some people on the right with bad economic and political ideas. What’s really retarded is when people express such offense at Rahm Emanuel’s off-color remarks, and making a big politically-correct thing about it. There’s nothing wrong with Rahm’s or Rush’s recognizing certain people for what they are, and there’s something good about people like Rush not being afraid to say what’s on his mind, and not afraid if a few people might be offended by a word. Most of the people who are offended by this are usually among the “social services” crowd.
But this political correctness fascism that’s been pervading and perverting our culture should be stopped. The left seem to have replaced the old Christian right in this censorship stuff, like book-banning and changing actual words with meanings into euphemisms so as to not offend someone. A perfect example of this is the American Association on Mental Retardation‘s changing their name to “American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.” That’s just silly. And it is now the leftists who want to attack and censor the Internet, as a means of stifling ideas that go against their retarded ideas that really shouldn’t be taken seriously anyway. As Psychology Today‘s Christopher Ryan states,
It’s not just stupid, it’s counter-productive. In other words, by infantilizing the discussion, this idiocy retards real social progress.