My Brother Rad: Redefining the R-word
Were you the group of teenage boys in the store mocking “that kid”, or the girls whispering and laughing at him? Well if you were, I’d like to introduce myself.
My name is Amanda, and I heard what you were saying. I didn’t think you were funny, or cool. You were hurtful.
Now let me introduce you to my older brother, Rad. He’s the person you were laughing at and making fun of.
Rad is a human, just like me and you – but too many people use the r-word (“retard(ed)”) to degrade him. Is that fair to him? Rad doesn’t deserve to be disrespected. Although the r-word may be empty to you, it packs a whole lot of hurt and pain to me and many other people who have been blessed with special people in their lives.
My brother has shown more love to people and given more high-fives in his 27 years than most do in their entire lives. He’s also the kind of guy who would go out of his way for a stranger and give him a hug, just to make sure they were ok.
When I hear the r-word, I think of my brother and what he means to me. Rad stands for love, courage, impact, inspiration, and respect. He redefines the r-word.
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About Amanda HaarbergBy sharing my and my bothers stories I want to change the publics prespective of people with disabilities. Be kind to all.
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