Down Syndrome & People First Language

Today's lesson is about language and words. #1 People First Language

Would you believe I didn't even know about how effective and awesome "People First Language" was until about two years ago when my uncle explained it to me? I know - - - seriously!

So, the specific example at hand is this: a person is not a Downs. A mother doesn't give birth to a Downs baby.

No, instead consider that child may be born with Down syndrome. My son has Down syndrome. He is not a Downs.

Do you see the difference? It's subtle. Again, I admit, this was pointed out to me. Thankfully, because it really makes a world of difference. And, like a former smoker, I've become pretty vigilant about it.

Words Used Carelessly

Three years ago while in a fit of rage and passion, I wrote an essay called “Arguing EugenicArguing Eugenicss.”

My son was 20 years old at the time. After the initial drafts were tuned, and honestly even tamed, the real proofing process began.

Can you believe at that time I had never heard of the concept of People First language?

Consequently throughout the initial draft I wrote things like, “a downs child.” My uncle

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