In a perfect world, we would all accept each others’ differences. In a perfect world, we would accept that people have different personalities and looks from our own and know that that’s okay. In a perfect world, we wouldn’t make fun of one another for being different. We especially wouldn’t make fun of someone for something he or she was born with, for something that can’t be changed, and for something that may take a lifetime to accept.
We all know the world is far from perfect, but what makes things even more disheartening is when a celebrity says something insensitive and downright mean about people who are different.
Shame on you, 50 Cent.
In case you don’t know, the rapper responded to some remarks “from a fan on his social networking site by saying ‘yeah, just saw your picture fool you look autistic.’ He added: ‘I don’t want no special ed kids on my timeline follow some body else.’ ”
Needless to say, many people are speaking out against the rapper, including Holly Robinson Pete in this beautiful response to what happened.
Of course 50 Cent has apologized, and of course he has erased the tweet from his timeline, but the fact remains that he has revealed himself as a person of ignorance. Now, I am not saying he is ignorant in all areas of life, but certainly he lacks the knowledge of what it means to be autisitc, of what receiving special education is all about. And, in my mind, this is nothing more than a large-scale (8 million followers on Twitter) form of playground bullying.
I work with students with special needs. And guess what? Most of them look like everyone else. Most–if not all–of them are sensitive to the fact that they receive special education services. They already think they’re dumb or different or somehow less than, and I hope none of them saw this mouth diaherrea from someone who is regarded as an idol by many kids, including those with special needs.
And furthermore, so what if someone looks different? We are all born unique individuals, and everyone on this planet has something unique and special about them that makes them beautiful. 50 Cent happens to be very gifted at rapping, but it seems he forgot that he is is not amazing at everything he does. No one is.
Albert Einstein said it best, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
I am happy 50 Cent apologized for his insensitive remarks, I just hope he walks away from this having learned that there is value in every individual on this planet, regardless of looks or IQ.