Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Never Go Full Retard

[Previously posted by Kennedy's mom]

I am taking the time this morning to let you know about a movie that is being released today. Tropic Thunder with stars such as Ben Stiller, Jack Black, Robert Downey Jr and Tom Cruise will be coming to a theater near us soon and you can be certain with this cast line up and the heavy marketing, your children will want to see it.

What caught my heart was the slogan that Dream Works has chosen to promote this movie. “Once upon a time….There was a Retard” and Ben Stiller is playing an individual with intellectual disabilities.

Cameron has a medical diagnosis of mental retardation because of Down syndrome. Even typing that brings this mother to her knees and I can’t even believe that our children are still being used as the whipping post for actors and writers to get a laugh. I can’t fight it all the time and mostly I just shrug and move along and turn my back on those who can’t see the sunshine that is right in front of their dark minds.

So this plea is for my little boy. The small one who can’t fight it. The small one who fights a war every single day to prove his worth. The bundle of sunshine who will hug you and love you in spite of the ugliness that at times like this surrounds him. I beg you to not see this movie. I beg you to voice your thoughts. I beg you to think of Little Cameron and the millions like him.

Dramatic much? Maybe. But what if they used the N word? Surely that wouldn't fly. What if they were attacking gay people? You can bet that wouldn't be aired. Yet people all over the country are going to see this movie... and they're going to laugh... at my son and people like him. They're going to buy T-shirts that mock my child... and THOUSANDS of others who carry the diagnosis of mentally retarded.

Still think I'm over-reacting? Here is a scene from the movie.

Stiller: There were times when I was doing Jack when I actually felt retarded. Like really retarded.

Downey: Oh yeah. Damn.

Stiller: In a weird way, I had to sort of just free myself up to believe that it was okay to be stupid or dumb.

Downey: To be a moron.

Stiller: Yeah.

Downey: To be moronical.

Stiller: Exactly.

Downey: An imbecile.

Stiller: Yeah. When I was playing a character.

Downey: When you was a character.

Stiller: Yeah, I mean, as Jack. Definitely.

Downey: It’s like working with mercury. It’s how science makes art form.

Stiller: Yeah.

Downey: You an artist.

Stiller: It’s what we do, right?

Downey: Everybody knows you never do a full retard.

Stiller: What do you mean?

Downey: Check it out. Dustin Hoffman, Rainman, look retarded, act retarded, not retarded. Count toothpicks to your cards. Autistic. Sure. Not retarded.

You know Tom Hanks, Forrest Gump. Slow, yes. Retarded, maybe. Braces on his legs. But he charmed the pants off Nixon and he won a ping-pong competition? That ain’t retarded.

You went full retard, man. Never go full retard.

How about now? Can you look at Cameron's sweet little face, after he's fought so hard in his life, and still go see that movie? Am I throwing you a guilt trip? Yes. I am. Because until the day I die I will fight for MY child and I will do my part to defend him against people like Dreamworks who wants everyone in the country to torture her with lines from this movie... because THEY want people to laugh. One day, Cameron will understand what all of this means. He WILL know when people are mocking him. He WILL hurt and his heart WILL break... just like yours and mine. But until he is old enough to figure it out and speak for himself, I will be here to be his voice.

Still think I'm over-reacting? OK. Fine. But add me to the list with: Kennedy's mom, Kallie's mom, Jacob's dad, MaryEllen's mom, Nash's mom, Darah's mom, Sophie's mom, Dominic's mom, Aiden's mom, Cheyenne and Mercedes' mom, Zoey's mom, Emma, Brianna and Micah's mom, Larkin's mom, Vinnie's mom, Lacey's mom, Mikey's dad, Ciarra's mom, Megan's mom, and her dad, too, Ethan's mom, Caden's mom, Aiden's mom, Ashlie's mom, Payton and Addison's mom, Tarenne's mom, Avery's mom, Lucas' mom, Charlie's mom, Angela's mom, Emma's dad, Kaia's mom, Tristan's mom, Delphine's mom, Joey's mom, Brant's mom, Ruby's mom, Nathan's mom, Paul's mom, Curtis' mom, John's mom, Parker's mom, Matty's mom, Kayla's mom, Ella Grace's mom, Gabi's mom, Gabby, Giovanna and Isabella's mom, Sierra's mom and Meghan, Kara and Amanda's mom. We can't ALL be over dramatic... can we?!

PLEASE don't go see this movie. Let Dreamworks know this is wrong. There will be a lot of other choices out there for mindless entertainment. Take a stand for Cameron and all his friends and say NO to Tropic Thunder.


thomtalent said...

You hit the nail on the head , Terri. My heart is so heavy, knowing this is opening around the country today. That it ever made it to the theaters is unimaginable. But it's here and it will haunt us all. I hope Mr. Stiller realizes eventually, what he did in the name of the almighty dollar. I hope the boycott works. I hope people stay away and I hope he feels the pinch. I hope he has trouble sleeping at night. Like most comedians that use hate to make laughter-I hope he is soon forgotten.
Robbin Lyons

Michelle said...

Well said!

Suzy said...

Thank you. This isn't on the list of things I'd see to begin with and that was before you explained the premise. I see no humor in being hurtful to others under any circumstance and will make a point of avoiding this.

Doreen said...

Terri........ I'm sure that was not an easy email/post to do - but THANK YOU! thank you for making more people aware, you can bet my family will not see this movie or any others like it. Thank you and kiss your boys from the Carrells - we love them no matter what!

Marea said...

An eloquent and heart-wrenching battle-cry for our kids Terri...thank you! I find myself wishing and hoping that we could protect them from this ugliness forever...alas.

Nick McGivney said...

Terri, thanks for the link. We've got more than a month before this movie opens in Ireland, so we may well be able to make some noise to help bring light to squalid habits. All links help spread the concern. Good luck on your side of the big pond.

God bless


The Parker Family said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Christina said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.