To: Weird Al
Re: Word Crimes
Despite being purely brilliant in places, many of us in the disability community are not pleased with this video: After one view, I was able to count three cheap shots: spastic (totally unacceptable as an insult): mouth-breather (not much better than calling someone a retard): drool (ditto) I will give a pass to the use of the word “moron” (spelled moran in the video) but I really shouldn’t because it shares a common history with words like retarded as a word that was once a “diagnosis” becoming synonymous with stupidity. All these insults come from systematic and historical hatred towards people with intellectual disabilities, many of whom were/are denied access to literacy education not because they were/are incapable of learning to read but because someone decided/decides they were/are not worth teaching. I know perfectly well that your song is meant to target those who have chosen to ignore the education they have been privileged to receive. However, in amongst a great deal of extreme cleverness and humour, you also invoke images about those who have been systematically excluded from education in order to deliver your insults to those who you deem be too lazy to use what they were freely given.
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