I hate giving that attenuated mantis of fuckwittage any ink.
We all know that A.C. called Obama a retard. And that this Special Olympian wrote a fabulous response. And maybe you also know that an awesome guy named Barnaby Chiong posted on Facebook last night:
we should start a thing. from now on, instead of saying “retard” or “stupid”, let’s say “coulter.” it could be the new santorum.
I like it!
My friend Ellen asked me to post a comment on her blog, wherein she talks about being the parent of a kid with special needs, and I tried, but Blogger — that coulter of blogging software — ate my words. So here’s a paraphrase:
I grew up saying retard. I have had to struggle to wean myself. I realize it takes effort to train oneself to find other words. But to the people who say the following three things that people who love to say retard always say, regular as clockwork:
1. You’re censoring me!
2. I don’t mean YOUR kid!
3. It’s such a great word!
1. I do not think censorship means what you think it means. I do not own all the words. I do not have the power to stop you from choosing the words. I cannot come to your house with a giant needle and thread and I cannot put you in Word Jail. (Was that in The Phantom Tollbooth or something?) I’m asking you to choose differently because you are currently choosing to be a dick.
2. You do mean my kid. If not mine, then someone else’s. And you are choosing an insult for one person (in Coulter’s case, Obama) that slams an entire group of people who have not offended you, unless you mean their very existence offends you, in which case, again, you are a dick.
3. It’s a word that gives you an illicit thrill when you say it. I know. It feels puerile in a fun, naughty way. I get it. Other people get that selfsame thrill from saying “fag” or the n-word. But is it really a “great” word? I mean, it’s not a very original word if tons of people say it (as the response to the r-word campaign seems to indicate they do). Maybe you can come up with something more creative?
Here’s a thought: My 11-year-old is currently obsessed with Shakespearean insults. (Yeah, we’re nerds. Wanna call us a name? KNOCK YOURSELF OUT.) Feel free to choose your favorite and lob it at any coulter who pisses you off.
whoreson obscene greasy tallow-catch
infinite and endless liar
huge bombard of sack
stuffed cloak-bag of guts
poisonous bunch-backâ€™d toad
(I’m also fond of “Your virginity breeds mites, much like a cheese.” I haven’t shared that one with the 11-year-old, though.)
As an illustration, I will now use some of Shakespeare’s words in a sentence or 10. “Hey, Ann Coulter, hag of all despite! Dissembling harlot! Thou art like a toad; ugly and venomous! Thou mis-shapen Dick! Thou art unfit for any place but hell; thine face is not worth sunburning; thereâ€™s no more faith in thee than in a stewed prune. I do desire we may be better strangers. Away! Thou’rt poison to my blood.”
See? Yes, it’s more work than “retard,” I grant you, but seriously, there are many slurs to choose from that won’t make you sound like such a fucking coulter.
[Update: Deleted the 100 Best Movie Insults clip for use of “retard.” Jeez. Thank you, alert commenter Elizabeth.]
ANYHOO, my point is that the English language is delightfully flexible and has many, many mean words you can put together in super-mean ways. LET A THOUSAND INSULTS THAT ARE NOT RETARD BLOOM. Otherwise, the coulters win.