On Sunday, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer used the term “retarded” — or the r-word — on the OneNYCHA podcast while discussing a past battle over constructing a congregate living facility for intellectually disabled children. “When I first was assemblyman, they wanted to build a congregate living place for retarded children,” Schumer said. “The whole neighborhood was against it.
These are harmless kids, they just needed some help” While the term “retarded” used to be commonplace medical jargon devoid of stigma, it has morphed into a slur used casually by everyone from schoolyard bullies to ignorant adults.
Contemporary usage of the word is meant to belittle, trivialize and marginalize people and things, and it is never used in a