Life As Alice Blog

Down Syndrome

Dear So & So... The Mong Edition

So, I am bloody sick of people asking my opinion on the debate of Mr Ricky Gervais vs The Word Mong so here are my thoughts to, Ricky himself, All you offended by him and to the parents and family of Down Syndrome children.

This might be a shock of a 'parents perspective' for you to read but I assure you it is worth a look... or so Hoff said anyway...

**Disclosure** If I offend anyone or you are shocked by my opinion... I don't really care any more I just wish people would bloody let it lie. But seriously I do not wish to offend people on purpose but these are my opinions and all I write on here are the opinions made by me, of me and only me. If you want to whine afterwards please do so somewhere else as after this I wish to be left to my hangover in peace.

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Dear Ricky,

From one Whitleyite to another (this will amuse my friends in Reading!), I have to tell you I am quite proud of you for sticking to your guns and not backing down, but unlike Mr Boyle, apologising for any offence made... well apologising in your own little way. I personally don't think you've done anything to apoligise for as, yet again, the hype has been over exposed and this was caused by people who just like to moan and be offended by anyone and anything they can because they are boring Cu.... you get my point!

I have a 9yr old son with Down Syndrome and I use the word MONG all the time. Never towards my son and never with any offence intended to anyone, but in a general everyday sentence it does sneak in on occasions, just like Spacca or Loser or Fatty or C**t! (as demonstrated above) I was raised in Yorkshire and up there, they say words and don't really understand the meaning behind them... This isn't because they are Thick or Ignorant, It is because they are relaxed and happy and content with themselves and their judgement. They also make up words that they don't even know the meaning of, so how anyone else is supposed to understand is beyond me! In Yorkshire and other places scattered around the UK... half the terms they use for things are out dated and can be classed as racist or politically incorrect in any other part of the country, Again this is not due to ignorance but due to their relaxed nature, they are basically behind with the rest of the countries Up Tight Word Association Game!... And I love that about being up there! (this isn't the whole of Yorkshire I know that! so please don't be offended) Due to being up there for so long I am also very behind on what is and isn't acceptable, but now I'm down here I am learning a different way of life BUT I am getting bloody sick of people telling me what I can and can't say! I mong out on the sofa all the time!... so bloody what!

Surely if anyone had the right to be offended by the word Mong it would be me, right? WRONG because i'm not an idiot! It was used as a meaningless word and if used as a term towards my child or any other Downs person in a horrible way, I would have personally cut your balls off but... sorry person with Downs not a Downs person... this is also politically incorrect you see, I am, even as a parent to a Downs child, always corrected on the way I say that, as obviously it may offend... ME, if I say it the other way round... I'm hardly likely to offend myself really am I? but apparently I can. Not being funny but does that really matter in this day and age... NO! People with Down Syndrome are so integrated into society now that people don't even notice them.. in a good way though. I have only ever come across one situation in the past 9 years where I have been slightly offended by something said... and that was for all of 2 seconds and then common sense kicked in and I realised there was no issue and if I made it one then it would be publicly making people feel self concious about what to say to me, or about words they can and can't use!... Here was my situation...

A lovely drunken Irish lady, at a doo at the Irish club, Reading, decided to come and chat to me in the toilets about my son, all was lovely until she said in her heavy Irish accent... 'Mongrels are all so loving aren't they...' you see that to me was a term that nobody had even thought about my boy, let alone said out loud... but amongst the shock, I took in the rest of the sentence and realised, in her odd little way, she was trying to be nice. I took a deep breath and nodded walking away thinking 'did that just happen' then sat down to talk to my friend who's doo it was and who's family member it was and explained... in horror he said 'No No No No No she wasn't being horrible, she is from a remote part of Ireland that is stuck in the 50's when it comes to PC terms' I fully accepted that, as I said before that is most of Yorkshire! I wasn't offended, I was shocked obviously, but not offended, because I'm not an argumentative, thick, idiot! What use would it be if I'd have taken offence and kicked off? It wouldn't have been for any other reason than to be an idiot and that is the exact problem that the people that are hounding you have created! A new conflict for our kid's to take on board!

Most of the people offended have no tie with Down Syndrome people themselves either, what is that about? Most parents have taken offence to the negative publicity towards it rather than the actual word itself! Again it is just the people playing this ridiculous Up Tight Word Association Game! Half the people offended by you would never have seen your twitter anyway, so how would they know if the papers and news hadn't got others wound up by it. 

IT'S A BLOODY WORD! It hasn't got a knife attached to it and it isn't even used as anything to do with Down Syndrome any more! Not a single 'youth' knew what Mong actually meant until those idiots who published their 'outrage' started piping up! We now have another problem on our hands as parents... If the nasty side of these youths decide to take in this small bit of knowledge, Our kids will now have to fight the same prejudice that they were trying to defend... WHAT A BUNCH OF TWATS! Sometimes it is better to leave the past in the past and let the generation that invent new meanings to these particular words that's meanings get lost in time, to create their own interpretations... they don't need educating on the terms that nobody uses... they need educating on being polite to people and pulling their jeans up above their pants! 

Sorry I'm ranting now.... Anyway Ricky, I just wanted to say that as a parent, living in your home town, with a Downs child, I want to let you know that you have my full backing!

I'm off to Mong out now mate I am well and truly hung over!... All the best.

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Dear All Those Offended By The Word Mong...

  1. Take a pen and paper...
  2. Got it?...
  3. Now write down this at the top... Why am I offended? This is about why it offends YOU nobody else...
  4. Now underneath write down all the reasons why you are offended by Ricky using the word 'Mong'...
  5. BUT... there's a catch... you can only write about the offence caused by using it in the term used with NO association with Down Syndrome...As Ricky did...
  6. OR with no meaning behind the use of the word in general...
  7. Done it??...
  8. Now what have you got written down?

I'm guessing not much! Because there isn't really much to be offended by really is there? 

Does it really effect YOU? As a person? To hear someone use a word that has been disassociated with the meaning, that may have caused offence at some point, since the 50's 60's?? 

Does it bother you to hear it used in a way that doesn't bother most people with Down Syndrome now a days, because not many of them know that it used to be aimed at them? Because it was, until now, just that IN THE PAST, it being past tense we didn't find it necessary to inform them of the past hatred and disgusting behaviour against them in a past life... you know, so not to scare or worry them!... We now have to explain to them all about it, because they are reading and hearing about it everywhere over offence taken on their behalf. Most people with Downs will be OK with it and understand because they're more intelligent than most of you... Others, with more serious problems, will struggle to get it and in turn it could cause a number of troubles for them... all because you thought you were offended on their behalf... making them still more intelligent than you!

Have you thought that now we have a new problem, now that you people have advertised to a whole new generation, the words true meaning, that this will back fire and cause a second round of grief and ignorance by this generations youth or even adults? Have you thought about this out come? Because lets face it, In a country that still sees racist hate crime, bullying, gang fights and constant discrimination, amongst other problems, we aren't able to rule out that you've just handed new ammo to the people we are trying to educate 'include in society' too.  Well done you!! clap clap... :sarcastic tone:

Let me put it this way.... We as parents, family and friends of people with Downs do not need you to be offended for us, People with Downs are clever enough to be offended for themselves and we do not need your involvement... We are not a project for you to work on or for you to make your self feel like you are 'doing something to help' We can pick, choose and even fight our own battles and that is when we feel like doing it not when others see fit!

Thanks for your concern but can you now f**k off and let us clear up the mess you've made...

Thanks and see ya!


** Now here is where I can stop shouting and lower my tone a little**
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 Dear Parents and Family Members of people with Downs,

I can understand why some would take offence at the word Mong. We, after all, are the only ones that this word truly effects. We have been blessed with these amazing little or big bundles of joy for a very good reason... because we can cope with the stresses and the strains that come with them... yeah OK on the outside it might be tough but deep down we know we would do anything to protect them from the horrors that lie outside of our cuddles and our family homes. But they will only fall at the first hurdle if you hide them away and let them live in a bubble, if we are scared they will be petrified. There is always going to be mean spirited, cold hearted, ignorant idiots who purposely go out and offend our children, we can not change this. What we can change is the way that others see them and the way we treat them and the life lessons WE teach them is crucial.
I was offended last week when I heard the news about the conflict between what's right and wrong to say... but not by Ricky or the actual word itself, by the ignorance shown in the way they've handled it in the media. Ricky is right, words change meaning all the time, gay meaning happy and gay meaning sexuality for example even the N word has come back in to fashion amongst the black culture but is only used amongst the black culture, which is widely accepted and understood by all. So why are we offended by a word which was disassociated with our children decades ago? 

Until this ridiculous media outrage, the word Mong was not seen by the past few generations as anything to do with Down Syndrome, it was a term used for relaxing, dozy, idiot... the latter being non of which our children are seen as any more, due to the hard work of several organisations and the integration into society. So many people adults, teens and children have said to me they had no idea that is what it originally meant... I had people apologise for using it... I suppose I'll have to apologise to myself then as, I must confess, I use it in the new form, all the time and so will my son no doubt! These people who have been outraged on our behalf have now just highlighted again the word in it's derogatory term, meaning now if it's used people will be instantly seen as being discriminating against our kids... when really they are doing no such thing! 

We are back tracking after taking 20 steps forward we are now 10 steps back. It's completely pointless. Why be offended? Why waste your time on it? We should have Embraced the change, it was for the better that people now use it as a different meaning... that people were ignorant to it's true meaning... 

We, as parent's and family, are now left to pick up the pieces of this media pretence to be annoyed, by now having to prepare our kids for the damage caused by the uproar, the back handed comments from the newly educated idiots, of all ages, who will use this as their opportunity to make jokes, point, whisper, stare and cause trouble even more than they did before... We need to educate our children to build a barrier against these people and hope that we can build back up the work done by so many, to eliminate ignorant discrimination by using the word Mong or Mongrel... 

What is that old saying... Ignorance is bliss?... please take note of this the worlds media!

So there we go that is that out of the way... If you are shocked... I am sorry but I honestly think we now have bigger issues on our hands than a silly word and what it used to mean... It is now time for me to go to footy so I need to get sorted. I hope you got out of this a different insight to what you first thought... and just remember it's good to be politically correct but seriously don't let it stress you out too much... Get a life! LOL

I promise no more hungover rants for a while now...