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Ann Coulter Defends ‘Retard’ Comment


Ann Coulter is sick of being bullied about her bullying. The conservative pundit defended her use of the word “retard” to describe President Obama, saying that word has been used to mean “loser” for the last 30 years.

Coulter said that she would never use the word “retard” to describe someone with an actual mental handicap. But for someone who’s just being a loser? Well, the r-word is a perfectly acceptable term.

Coulter said:

“Look, no one would refer to a Down Syndrome child, someone with an actual mental handicap, by saying ‘retard.’ Where do you think the words ‘imbecile,’ ‘idiot,’ ‘moron,’ ‘cretin’ come from? These were all technical terms at one time. ‘Retard’ had been used colloquially to just mean ‘loser’ for 30 years. But no, no — these aggressive victims have to come out and tell you what words to use.”

Colmes also asked Coulter about John Franklin Stephens’ letter. Stephens, a special Olympics athlete, wrote Coulter an open letter shaming the pundit for the use of the R-word.

Coulter said:

“I do not need to be told this. I was not making a joke about Special Olympics the way our president did, by the way. It would be one thing if I said in my tweet a joke about Special Olympics, a joke about Down Syndrome. No one would call someone with Down Syndrome ‘retard.'”

Colmes pressed Coulter, saying that many people believe the word “retard” is offensive.

Coulter responded:

“Oh, screw them. That’s what they feel I do? I feel they’re being authoritarian bullying victims. This is the other thing about liberal victims — they always claim, like the Jersey Girls, to speak on behalf of all the victims of 9/11. No you don’t, you big bullies.”

The controversy started shortly after the third presidential debate when Coulter complimented Mitt Romney for taking it easy on “retard” Obama.

Coulter wrote on Twitter:

She later added:

The comments sparked some serious backlash for the conservative pundit. The strongest argument came from John Franklin Stephens, who said that the word “retard” should be a badge of honor and not an insult.

Stephens writes:

“After I saw your tweet, I realized you just wanted to belittle the President by linking him to people like me. You assumed that people would understand and accept that being linked to someone like me is an insult and you assumed you could get away with it and still appear on TV. Well, Ms. Coulter, you, and society, need to learn that being compared to people like me should be considered a badge of honor. No one overcomes more than we do and still loves life so much.”

Are you a fan of Ann Coulter? Is she being bullied because of her word choice?

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53 Responses to “Ann Coulter Defends ‘Retard’ Comment”

  1. Ingie Burke Givens

    Why, Why, Why, does anyone continue to listen to this woman, buy her books, or acknowledge her existence? She isn't funny, she is not particularly intelligent, she has really bad hair, and poor taste in virtually every aspect of her existence. See how easy that was? ANYONE can write nasty comments or nasty books, or send despicable tweets.

  2. Cynthia Polizzi

    Shame on you Ann for being so insentive in your words….and more importantly…for disrespecting the Office of The President of The United States of America….and the man in the position President Obama. As a news person you should be more conscience of your words and what they mean to those who listen. POTUS should be respected no matter what you feel about his politics. Agree or Disagree…but with respect. Govern yourself accordingly.

  3. Stephanie Parnell

    I didn't realize anyone listened to her. I thought she was on the same level as AM radio conspiracy theorists (or Jersey Shore if you prefer a more main stream example); someone to quote and get a laugh or a head shake out of, but no one to take seriously. She seems more of a caricature of a conservative that a staunch liberal might create than an intelligent person who can form educated opinions and comments.

  4. Cynthia Polizzi

    Shame on you Ann for being so insensitive in your words….and more importantly…for disrespecting the Office of The President of The United States of America….and the man in the position President Obama. As a news person you should be more conscious of your words and what they mean to those who listen. POTUS should be respected no matter what you feel about his politics. Agree or Disagree…but with respect. Govern yourself accordingly.

  5. Cynthia Polizzi

    Freedom of speech is the political right to communicate one's opinions and ideas. The term freedom of expression is sometimes used synonymously, but includes any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used. In practice, the right to freedom of speech is not absolute in any country and the right is commonly subject to limitations, as with libel, slander, obscenity,[citation needed] sedition (including, for example inciting ethnic hatred), copyright violation, revelation of information that is classified or otherwise .
    The right to freedom of expression is recognized as a human right under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and recognized in international human rights law in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). Article 19 of the ICCPR states that "[e]veryone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference" and "everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice". Article 19 goes on to say that the exercise of these rights carries "special duties and responsibilities" and may "therefore be subject to certain restrictions" when necessary "[f]or respect of the rights or reputation of others" or "[f]or the protection of national security or of public order (order public), or of public health or morals".[1][2]

  6. Kim LaCapria

    Geri Polizzi-Mondi Freedom of speech does not equal freedom of consequences from speech. Ann Coulter has a right to be offensive, but she also is subject to reap the hatred her words inspire. That's how it works!

  7. Scholar Mulhern

    An Open Letter to David Skorton, President of Cornell University.

    Dear President Skorton:

    I have always held Cornell University in the highest esteem, and I still do. I am concerned, however, by the vocabulary skills of one of your graduates, a Ms. Ann Coulter, who tweets quite often and gives silly speeches in the public arena. I am a high school English teacher and I quite often refer to the language practices of educated people in the public sphere for timely, relevant examples of good language skills. Unfortunately, your graduate, Ms. Ann Coulter, has been disappointing in this regard. Her recent tweet: “I highly approve of Romney’s decision to be kind and gentle to the retard,” in which she was referring to President Obama, scores low on the language complexity scale. As I am sure you are aware, educators are trying to increase academic vocabulary and text complexity to prepare for the upcoming Common Core State Standards Assessment. It is disheartening that educated public figures like Ms. Coulter use loaded language and offensive words to get their political points across. I was wondering if Cornell University ever considered implementing a Recall Program, similar to the program utilized by the Automobile Industry? If so, Ms. Coulter could be your first “recall.” Maybe she could take her Freshman Composition class again and be checked for text-complexity ability before she is allowed to go out on the road again?

    Ms. Coulter has not been completely disappointing to me though. I plan to write Pacer, a wonderful organization that educates about the harmful effects of bullying. It is National Bullying Prevention Month, and I think Ms. Ann Coulter could be a “Poster Bully” for the organization. Words like “retard” are highly offensive. She would provide teachers all across the country with a relevant, timely example of how not to act.

    Actually, why am I writing you, Mr. Skorton? You are certainly not responsible for Ms. Coulter’s behavior. I should be writing Ms. Coulter and thanking her for providing me with excellent examples: someone who does not know how to use language effectively, someone who is a bit infantile and possesses low-level vocabulary skills, and someone who demonstrates bully behavior. By the way, I would like to qualify my “infantile” descriptor. Actually infants have a better understanding of language. “Goo goo, gah gah” is a more eloquent use of diction than Ms. Coulter’s example. “Goo goo, gah gah” displays alliteration (repetition of consonant sounds), which certainly rates higher on the text complexity scale than Ms. Coulter’s “retard.”

    Sorry to bother you, President Skorton. I will write Ms. Coulter instead. But please do give a thought to the Recall Program.


    James Mulhern,

  8. Carol Jackson

    When she is on my TV the channel gets changed. I cam't stand that loud mouthed B**ch! Why anyone would listen to her is beyond me.

  9. Jill Simms

    Obama is a retard! He haS RUINED our country. His big elephant high waisted wife has turned the White House into the family home for her family…moving her mother in law in the WHite House, how crass, but yet how typical of her kind. He is a retard who has destroyed the middle class and doesn't deserve another 4 years. Go Ann

  10. Anonymous

    my best friend's mother-in-law got paid $18465 a month ago. she works on the internet and got a $404300 home. All she did was get blessed and try the steps uncovered on this link try37.coℳ.

  11. Anonymous

    After watching ann on cnn, she is really sick. Maybe Obama preexisting health care can help her.

  12. Audrey Silverblade

    Mosby Medical dictionary–Retard means delay –Delayed Dentition or delayd speech etc. It's people who cause words to twist to suit themselves. Also Retardant like flame retardant.

  13. Renee Mueller

    Hey, Jill you azzwipe, Michelle Obama's mother-in-law has been dead for years! That is so typical of you republicans….never get the facts right. Just spew utter BS!

  14. Teresa Carlton

    Who is this loon Jill Simms? Back off my Godmother or you'll be dealing with me, Little Lady.

  15. Charles Wesley Bird

    Bullying Ann is done often, but she is very, very Tough (that's a word I mean in the 60s sense, Ann). If Stephens can read and write, he is doing better than 79 percent of those eighth graders taught by Chicago's unionized three-figure waged public school teachers, and I will say he is not the type of person he says he associates with the "R" word and therefore should know Ann was talking about the politician type of "R" and that Obama uses the same word the same way.

  16. Danny Taylor

    People have used the word "retard" in all aspects of everyday life. "So and so has got to be 'retarded' to think this will work", or "Well that's retarded to put that there". The only thing that has people up in arms over Ann Coulter's choice of words is the fact that she's a conservative woman. If she were a liberal woman, this would be a non-issue to so many folks out there who are "offended" by her tweets. BTW, I work with developmentally disabled adults in a group home and the guys I work for don't give a rip about words used to describe someone. The only person who should be offended should be the person it was directed at, not the masses who read it.

  17. Charles Wesley Bird

    Jill, these other posters don't like you cuz they think the "P" word is badde than the "R" word, which reminds me of going to the bar during the Ford administration with some unmarked officers of the law. I spotted some stranger deaf girls and left the Blue table. Soon, I brought three cute School for the Deaf teachers (one of whom was hearing) back to the Blue table. Soon, the girls tried their hands at teaching me some signing, so I whispered to the appropriate teacher that I wanted the "P" word sign. Well, you guessed it, one makes a fist over one's nose and rotates it a bit. I taught the sign to the actual Ps and told them what it meant. The younger Ps were amused but the Boss P was not, turning as Red as Obama's cabinet.

  18. Charles Wesley Bird

    Cyn, when Obama took office, I was speaking harshly of him for some reason and another Conservative took me to task on the basis of the Bible teaching us to pray for Pharoah, so to speak. Shamed, I did it for some time. The next time I saw my colleague, he had to report that he no longer felt that the verse applied, as Obama could not have harmed the country any more than if he had literally been the Sleeper Spy from the Sinatra movie.

  19. Charles Wesley Bird

    Oh, Jill, I know where you mean to ship that "P" word! Steady, girl! Rox, really, Jill means Radical Red, I hope. If she confesses to what you said, I won't like her any more unless it turns out she Quantun Leaped her recently from 1953 or so.

  20. Charles Wesley Bird

    Bd, I have to say there are Leftist standup comedians by the dozens far more offensive than Ann, who uses some shock words as tools of her trade. She is very funny and excels at getting Libs in "Having a Cow" mode. Plus she has points she makes extremely well, like" Political Correctness has Run Amuck".

  21. Ingie Burke Givens

    AH Ha Ha! I had this great response but I blocked her so she nor ya'all can see it. I also reported her to Facebook for harrassing a friend. And then I checked her profile. This is what it says about college "started but never finished".

  22. Ingie Burke Givens

    FYI to my friends who responded to MY post. This was one of those article response things, so there are tons of people (such as Jill Simms) who are in no way connected to any of us. I am going to hide her response and if necessary block her. What an unpleasant person. And it is interesting to me that this person has no photo, she (or he) prefers to be "anonymous"….and that is exactly what she (or he) will be.

  23. Joe Mineo

    She may claim people have been using the word for 30 years to mean loser but really only those with a 7th grade mentality still do. Maybe that's what we are dealing with here.a woman who still acts like a 7th grade mean girl bully. And by the way, the word romneysia was a play onthe word amnesia. It was not a cancer joke.

  24. Michelle Goldsberry

    Ann is sooooo ignorant!!!! She keeps defending her saying retard and explains it away as it always meant loser so therefore it is okay to use
    It. What she does not admit to is the word retard is derived from the word retardation. Her saying it is okay to use it in a derogatory way is ridiculous. Of course with her standard classy way (insert sarcasm here) she does not apologize or even show she understands where he is coming from in his letter. Look who is calling names now Ann!

  25. Michelle Goldsberry

    Ann whining about bullying that is funny. Well when you judge just about anything that walks except republican politicians then you reap what you sow baby!

  26. Betty Pecoraro

    The fact that you work with disabled people and have no regard for the misuse of this word, leads me to believe you have ZERO sensitivity and should perhaps be in a different field. I learned at the age of 7 that this word is offensive to some and was therefore impolite at best. I always balk when a grown as* adult uses this word, which unfortunately happens more often than you would think. Speak responsibly if you are in a position to be heard publicly.

  27. Danny Taylor

    You're kidding me right? You have no idea how much compassion I have lady. I have been in an intense group home where I change shit filled attends DAILY! I have to help grown men feed themselves breakfast, lunch and dinner. I have to help them bathe themselves and I change wet sheets every morning. I take these guys to baseball games in the summer and concerts in the winter and I have been doing this for 3 years. Once a week I take my 4 year old daughter to the home I work at to show her that the people I work for are people who should be treated with respect.
    The fact that neither the word nor the person who used it does not offend me is not a reflection on a lack of sensitivity I have. It's a reflection of the amount of hypocracy I see in the world when it comes to the use of a word. It's merely a word and the only way it can offend you is if you choose to let it offend you. BTW, what have you done for the special needs people in your town?

  28. Harry Lime

    Coulter is one of the best-selling authors of the conservative movement, while she is suspected by some of being transsexual. She has a heavy brow ridge, a strong jaw, big hands, big feet, a thick waist (in spite of the fact that she is generally thin), and an Adam's apple, and she is taller than most genetic women. There are no records of an Ann Coulter born in Connecticut in 1962-63. Some say she was born Arthur Coltrane, but that (indeed all of this) may be on a par with the whole “Obama was born in Kenya” thing. It is approximately as right for anyone (as here) to make up or repeat stories about Coulter’s sexuality as it is to make up or repeat stories about Obama’s birth. It is approximately as morally right to call Coulter a “transsexual” as it is for Coulter to call Obama “retard.” It is precisely as morally right to call out anyone as a transsexual or a retard, regardless of their sexuality or their mental acuity.

    And there is no question that associating Ann Coulter with transsexuals demeans transsexuals.

  29. Charles Wesley Bird

    I have lots of sensitivity, Betty. We have to balance being courteous in our discourse, which is important, with standing in the breach against political retards who want us to wear collars and gags. This is, after all, the Land of the Free. To me, "retard" is an okay word to use, albeit not as an epithet with which to bully some kid who had the misfortune to be taught by public school union teachers in Chicago and therefore is unable to read or write. Ultimately, the political correctness thing will have Big Brother step in and retardedly expunge this and many other words from the dictionary. I plan on trying to reason with the Big retard. Wish me luck.

  30. Jo Lynn Strong

    When did free speech become confused with "hate speech"? This woman is an insensitive bigot and why anyone chooses to listen to the likes of her or Rush Limbaugh is beyond me. They are the real losers in this world.

  31. Charles Wesley Bird

    Harry, I am trying to figure how to do civility here. Suffice it to say, six foot tall girls are rare but not that rare, her waist is thin, her adam's apple is a figment of your imagination, there's nothing heavy about her brow, her femininity is A+, long feet and hands go with long bodies overall in both sexes, and Ingrid Bergman and other Viking girls had strong jaws too. Here is the Google Images link for femininity. These pictures of girls run high on the actual features you claim go against Ann's femininity [height,thin,and long extremities (her legs are Hall of Fame quality). She was born in 1961, same as O'bama.

  32. Ray Patterson

    This is simple, not quite as simple as the people using this as a tactic to be a bully providing them a sense of strength over others but SIMPLE nonetheless.
    We as humans have ALWAYS tried to force our inabilities through a prism distorting our ignorance, lack of education and lack of sympathy towards others into strength and justification of “I am better than you”. We were all born weak and reliant on others, causing us to naturally trust that others will care for us. So when does the lack of understanding, need for interaction with others and interest in helping one another become a lack of interest for others and hatred for those who are different? THIS IS A TRAIT THAT IS TAUGHT and it is up to each of us, at least those with OPEN minds, to decide who do I want to be and how do I want people to see me?
    Whether the “N-word”, the “K-word” for someone of Jewish decent, the “K-word” of South Africa, Oriental over Asian, Pogue for the Irish and many, many others slurs they are all based in fear, fear within the person using them to make themselves seem better.
    My question to Ann is do you use the “N-Word” that was common just 30-40 years ago as well? Do you mind overly critical comments about your beliefs or your personal appearance – “Bible Thumper, Blonde Bimbo – or the fact that you are a strong minded women who makes comments like these? You are human, you are female and that makes you have a heart both physically and emotionally. There is something out there that will affect you like these slurs affect others. Try not putting not only your feet in their shoes, just once try reflecting back to the time when you needed others and put yourself in THEIR HEARTS and realize what you said was wrong. I feel for you Ann because there was something in your past that impacted you so desperately that it created the person you are today, ignorant, self-serving and obnoxious, taking you away from the simplicity of being human.

  33. Theresa McMillin

    I think it's hilarious that Libs want an apology for something a conservative says, but if one of 'their' people, (i.e. Bill Mayer, Joy Behar, etc) says somethiing offensive they overlook it. Or say that we don't have a sense of humor. Well I say be as offensive and you want (to both sides) without apology in celebration of our right to free speech! OFFEND ON! That's what makes great conversation, great passion and great debates.

  34. Theresa McMillin

    Betty Pecoraro What lack of sensitivity? If the people who are being called retarded aren't offended by it, then there is no offense. Only your misguided sense of self. And your projection onto someone else that they SHOULD be offended.

  35. Theresa McMillin

    I'm sorry, I thought we were adults, not children. Silly me.Doesn't anyone here have a good sense of self worth? Enough NOT to be offended? JEEZ!

  36. Dennis Glodzik

    Actually, maybe Ann Coulter deserves a little sympathy. I mean there can be no general acceptance of her loony behavior, but just a smidgen of sympathy for her plight, ostensibly born female (we can't be sure) she must learn to handle the rage she feels at never being able to live her dream, to be an aggressive, really violent middle linebacker. Or perhaps her second choice, an SS Gruppenführer.

  37. Mike Bayray

    PLEASE just keep sending her out there. It will just make things easier and easier. The "hardliners" don't and never will get it. They insist on acting like they're in charge and it's working really well. Divide and conquer!

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