Sam Clements SClements at NEO.RR.COM
Fri Mar 7 23:36:02 UTC 2008

As a 63-year-old male, I've never used the adjective to describe anything
other than a human being who has some degree of mental incapacity.

My kids, all under the age of 22, however, still use it to refer to
situations, inanimate objects, etc.  Not unlike the phrase, "that's so gay,"
which has nothing to do with one's sexual orientation.

Sam Clements

----- Original Message -----
From: "Scot LaFaive" <scotlafaive at GMAIL.COM>
Sent: Friday, March 07, 2008 5:28 PM
Subject: Retarded

> I'd like to get other people's impressions on this adjective. Personally,
> I
> use the word often but only when referring to inanimate objects, not
> people
> or animals. It basically means "inane" or "idiotic" to me. I'm interested
> in
> whether this adjective is becoming more an impersonal descriptor and if
> others also have moved away from using it on people and animals.
> Scot
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

The American Dialect Society -

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