Conservative commentator Ann Coulter is standing by her repeated use of the word “retard,” insisting that she’s done no wrong and will continue to use the term.
In an appearance late Friday on CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight,” Coulter defended her language choice and said that it’s unreasonable for certain words to be off-limits. Since she was talking about President Barack Obama — who has no disability — calling him a “retard” is no different than using words like “idiot” or “moron,” she said.
“I was not referring to someone with Down syndrome. I was referring to the president of the United States,” said Coulter, adding that she views “retard” as a synonym for loser. “Do you call people with mental disabilities retards because I don’t. I think that’s a nasty thing to do.”
Coulter came under fire last week from numerous disability advocates and organizations for using the word “retard” in several comments posted on Twitter.
When asked by CNN host Piers Morgan if she would continue using the term, Coulter said, “yeah, I’ve done it since that tweet.”
Self-advocate John Franklin Stephens, who has Down syndrome, wrote an open letter to Coulter explaining that using the word “retard” is demeaning to people like him.
“The word retarded is offensive and I should not be a symbol for someone who is dumb and shallow,” Stephens told Morgan.