Anyway, I was upset, and I left a comment, of course, knowing that it would be wildly unpopular, because they hate shit like that over there.
Y'know, it used to be that I didn't really have an opinion about what they call "The R Word," but which I prefer just to say: retard. (Kind of like saying Voldemort). Look, I blogged about it over a year ago. But in the last year, Child 1 has experienced the beginnings of what will likely be a lot of bullying in his future, and even though that word was never used by any of the kids at his school, I seem to have grasped onto it as the symbol of everything he's going to suffer at the hands of other people in his lifetime.
I know, maybe more than anybody, that people on the internet like to play a role, because the anonymity of the internet keeps them safe from having to take any real responsibility for their words. And I know that people will say things on the internet with the intention only to piss people off (that's called "trolling," and people do it on reddit all the time, just because it's fun for them). And I also know that people, especially on reddit, like to take the moral position that you should be able to say anything in the world you want to because the 1st Amendment gives you that right. But there's something about a person who would so gleefully say to a mother of an autistic child "I'm sorry your tard is such a burden," with the sole purpose of making me angry, that makes me lose all faith in humanity. I'm not easily offended by much, as you guys might know, and I'm not even sure if I'm offended by this as I am just really sad. Really really sad.
Because this is what my kid is facing in the years ahead of him: having to be around people who think nothing about saying and doing whatever they want because they think it's funny. These people, who might be pushing him and physically hurting him and actually calling him a retard to his face. These people, who call themselves "tardcharger," and who think it's hilarious and perfectly acceptable to say things like this.
Just to be clear, I'm not saying that anybody should be censored, my problem is with the thought process of a person who thinks that this kind of thing is okay. People actually think that this kind of thing is okay. How do I protect my child from people like that? The truth is that I can't. And that's why I'm sad now.
The kid who originally made the comic emailed me and I'm confident that he's cool. He's young, and saying things like that on reddit will get you karma, and I'm sure that's what he was going for. But, the fact that he wrote to me, and felt bad, convinces me that he's cool. The other dudes, though.... that's a whole other story.....