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View Full Version : Making a connection: Sepulveda does goodwill



NKySteeler
06-03-2010, 08:48 PM
Here's another "feel good" story about one of our players... :wink:
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Making a connection
6-3-2010
By Teresa Varley – Steelers.com

The event was hosted by Best Buddies and it didn’t take long for Dan Sepulveda and Corey Anthony to take that to heart, quickly becoming friends.

Sepulveda was teamed with Anthony, who has Down Syndrome, at the Duquesne University event. The idea was to get to know each other and realize that while they may be different in some ways, but they have plenty of similarities.

“When I got there I couldn’t imagine how cool it was going to be meeting Corey,” said Sepulveda. “He has an incredible personality, he’s so much fun. We had so much fun talking about what we have in common, sports we like. We were joking together.”

For those with Down Syndrome and other intellectual and developmental disabilities the world can be a cruel place. People make snap judgments about them, revert to name-calling and often times don’t give them a chance. Best Buddies is trying to turn that around through their “Spread the Word to End the Word” campaign. That word that can be so cutting, so biting and so unfair is retarded, a word many want to not hear again.

“The way in which Dan and Corey interacted with each other truly showed the message that we wanted to be conveyed, which was thatwe allhave so much more in commonthan we do differences and we must take the time to show respect to each other,” said Emily Karas, who just graduated from Duquesne with her Master’s Degree in Special Education and is a member of Best Buddies.“By doing so, a much more inclusive world will be created for everyone."

Sepulveda is one whose eyes were opened because of Best Buddies.

“What society does is write them off and they become someone you have to deal with,” said Sepulveda. “That is just the perception. That is not the case. It was so neat to see Corey and his story, how he goes to school, has a job and is giving back. Just the fact that he is God’s creation just like everyone else is so cool. To be able to share with him, see the smile on his face, the joy I could see in his life and the joy it brought to me, just how we are brothers in Christ. That is all we are at the end of the day.

“I hope I never take something like that for granted, the fact that you can go and make someone smile just because you are a Pittsburgh Steeler. That’s something I never want to take for granted, it’s just too cool.”

About Best Buddies:

Best Buddies is an international non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the lives of individuals with and without intellectual and developmental disabilities in one-to-one friendships with their peers in order to create lasting friendships. Currently, Best Buddies operates in each of the 50 states and in 46 countries, impacting 700,000 people worldwide.

"Spread the Word to End the Word" is a campaign created to engage schools, organizations, and communities by raising the consciousness of society about the dehumanizing and hurtful effects of the R-word, the word "retard(ed)" and encourage everyone to stop using this word. Our event was centered around the themes of respect, inclusion, and acceptance for all people, no matter what their differences may be.

http://www.steelers.com/news/article...8-6794f6b375f9

Flasteel
06-03-2010, 10:26 PM
The "R" word? Really??

I used to teach special education myself and think those with Downs Syndrome are some of the greatest people on the planet. Having those students in our schools is one of the best teaching tools we could have for empathy and kindness.

The real crime is referring to anyone with a mental or developmental disability as retarded. For this organization to embrace it as a legitimate term of reference is misguided in my opinion. Not to long ago the terms idiot, moron, imbecile were used by the mental health community to describe varying levels of intellect. Once they entered the common vernacular as a derogatory term, the terms were changed. The same needs to happen with "retarded".

It's one of my favorite words and while I would never dream of using it to describe someone who is legitimately handicapped, I will not stop using it.

NKySteeler
06-03-2010, 11:06 PM
It's one of my favorite words and while I would never dream of using it to describe someone who is legitimately handicapped, I will not stop using it.

I do as well, man... Honestly, this was just a "feel good" story that steelers.com posted, so I decided to copy it to this board and mine as well... It's just some "good stuff" to keep things moving along till we get into the meat of the real news come August... "Filler", if you will... :wink:

Flasteel
06-03-2010, 11:22 PM
It's one of my favorite words and while I would never dream of using it to describe someone who is legitimately handicapped, I will not stop using it.

I do as well, man... Honestly, this was just a "feel good" story that steelers.com posted, so I decided to copy it to this board and mine as well... It's just some "good stuff" to keep things moving along till we get into the meat of the real news come August... "Filler", if you will... :wink:

Don't worry NKy...I'm used to you posting a bunch of retarded crap disguised as "filler". :P

NKySteeler
06-03-2010, 11:30 PM
Don't worry NKy...I'm used to you posting a bunch of retarded crap disguised as "filler". :P

... Yea... 'Ya can't call it bulls**t straight-out without the word filter killing your sentimentality for some of the crap I post... LoL!... :lol:

fordfixer
06-04-2010, 01:12 AM
Having a special needs child myself I have seen first hand how the word "retarded" can hurt, and I can see why some would want its use stopped. I also know that there are more pressing needs for some of these people. But we'll take any help that we can get.

ff

flippy
06-04-2010, 09:34 AM
Good story.

As an aside, I no longer know what words I can and can't use anymore.

To me, words just seem like words. And you can use the same words in a positive or negative way. So why does it matter what words you use?

Shouldn't your spirit/intent matter more?

Seems like telling people that a particular word is bad makes it worse in a way. So if someone uses the word it must have bad intent and then makes the person who's the brunt of the word feel worse.

And then what happens is new words become the secret word for the old word any way. So people who have a mental handicap(I'm not even sure what the right word is supposed to be so apologies if I got this wrong, I'm trying to be sensitive here), end up being called special instead of retarded. But everyone knows special = retarded. And then in 25 years, we'll learn it's not ok to call someone special because everyone will have figured out by then that it just means the same thing as retarded.

No matter what happens, we'll always have a descriptive word to describe someone that's different. People will always feel bad about being different. So the descriptor that makes them different will always be a word with a negative connotation eventually.

Can't we just learn to celebrate that we're different?

None of us are alike.

We're all unique and different.

That's great and wonderful.

I've heard lots of people just want to be just like everyone else.

But everyone else isn't like everyone else.

And that's what we collectively need to learn to deal with.

I love kids with mental handicaps.

I typically find I have more in common with them than I do other people anyway.

And I'm not sure why I can't use a word to describe their uniqueness.

RuthlessBurgher
06-04-2010, 10:18 AM
Good story.

As an aside, I no longer know what words I can and can't use anymore.

To me, words just seem like words. And you can use the same words in a positive or negative way. So why does it matter what words you use?

Shouldn't your spirit/intent matter more?

Seems like telling people that a particular word is bad makes it worse in a way. So if someone uses the word it must have bad intent and then makes the person who's the brunt of the word feel worse.

And then what happens is new words become the secret word for the old word any way. So people who have a mental handicap(I'm not even sure what the right word is supposed to be so apologies if I got this wrong, I'm trying to be sensitive here), end up being called special instead of retarded. But everyone knows special = retarded. And then in 25 years, we'll learn it's not ok to call someone special because everyone will have figured out by then that it just means the same thing as retarded.

No matter what happens, we'll always have a descriptive word to describe someone that's different. People will always feel bad about being different. So the descriptor that makes them different will always be a word with a negative connotation eventually.

Can't we just learn to celebrate that we're different?

None of us are alike.

We're all unique and different.

That's great and wonderful.

I've heard lots of people just want to be just like everyone else.

But everyone else isn't like everyone else.

And that's what we collectively need to learn to deal with.

I love kids with mental handicaps.

I typically find I have more in common with them than I do other people anyway.

And I'm not sure why I can't use a word to describe their uniqueness.

I sometimes struggle to find a word to describe flippy's uniqueness. :lol:

flippy
06-04-2010, 10:28 AM
I sometimes struggle to find a word to describe flippy's uniqueness. :lol:

Hey, I resemble that remark :lol

MeetJoeGreene
06-04-2010, 01:04 PM
I sometimes struggle to find a word to describe flippy's uniqueness. :lol:

Hey, I resemble that remark :lol

fliptard?

fliptiot?

MeetJoeGreene
06-04-2010, 01:10 PM
Having a special needs child myself I have seen first hand how the word "retarded" can hurt, and I can see why some would want its use stopped. I also know that there are more pressing needs for some of these people. But we'll take any help that we can get.

ff

I understand what you and FLAsteel have said and am sensitve to it.
But the words retarded, idiot, etc. started out as valid medical terms. It wasn't until a derogatory meaning was attached and they began to be used in a mocking or mean-spirited fashion that they became "bad words".

Even if we assign another set of terms (e.g. "Special") - sooner or later insenstive people will use them in the same fashion and we will be looking for yet another set of terms.

flippy
06-04-2010, 01:25 PM
Having a special needs child myself I have seen first hand how the word "retarded" can hurt, and I can see why some would want its use stopped. I also know that there are more pressing needs for some of these people. But we'll take any help that we can get.

ff

I understand what you and FLAsteel have said and am sensitve to it.
But the words retarded, idiot, etc. started out as valid medical terms. It wasn't until a derogatory meaning was attached and they began to be used in a mocking or mean-spirited fashion that they became "bad words".

Even if we assign another set of terms (e.g. "Special") - sooner or later insenstive people will use them in the same fashion and we will be looking for yet another set of terms.

that's what i was trying to say in my incoflipent babbling.

RuthlessBurgher
06-04-2010, 01:46 PM
Having a special needs child myself I have seen first hand how the word "retarded" can hurt, and I can see why some would want its use stopped. I also know that there are more pressing needs for some of these people. But we'll take any help that we can get.

ff

I understand what you and FLAsteel have said and am sensitve to it.
But the words retarded, idiot, etc. started out as valid medical terms. It wasn't until a derogatory meaning was attached and they began to be used in a mocking or mean-spirited fashion that they became "bad words".

Even if we assign another set of terms (e.g. "Special") - sooner or later insenstive people will use them in the same fashion and we will be looking for yet another set of terms.

that's what i was trying to say in my incoflipent babbling.

Niiiice. :mrgreen:

Prok
06-04-2010, 02:20 PM
Good story.

As an aside, I no longer know what words I can and can't use anymore.

To me, words just seem like words. And you can use the same words in a positive or negative way. So why does it matter what words you use?

Shouldn't your spirit/intent matter more?

Seems like telling people that a particular word is bad makes it worse in a way. So if someone uses the word it must have bad intent and then makes the person who's the brunt of the word feel worse.

And then what happens is new words become the secret word for the old word any way. So people who have a mental handicap(I'm not even sure what the right word is supposed to be so apologies if I got this wrong, I'm trying to be sensitive here), end up being called special instead of retarded. But everyone knows special = retarded. And then in 25 years, we'll learn it's not ok to call someone special because everyone will have figured out by then that it just means the same thing as retarded.

No matter what happens, we'll always have a descriptive word to describe someone that's different. People will always feel bad about being different. So the descriptor that makes them different will always be a word with a negative connotation eventually.

Can't we just learn to celebrate that we're different?

None of us are alike.

We're all unique and different.

That's great and wonderful.

I've heard lots of people just want to be just like everyone else.

But everyone else isn't like everyone else.

And that's what we collectively need to learn to deal with.

I love kids with mental handicaps.

I typically find I have more in common with them than I do other people anyway.

And I'm not sure why I can't use a word to describe their uniqueness.
If it makes you feel any better i have no problem at all letting you call me "Prok and beans".

BTW, the phrase "If you will" has become one of my favs. too. lol