Let's Get what now? Original version of badly-aged Black Eyed Peas song a viral hit despite "censorship"

Originally published at: Let's Get what now? Original version of badly-aged Black Eyed Peas song a viral hit despite "censorship" | Boing Boing


Yeah, you can’t excuse offensive speech this way. That’s like saying, “That’s so gay,” when you mean something is stupid, and then when someone calls you out for using a homophobic slur, saying “I didn’t mean it like that!” It doesn’t work that way.


Was just telling my 14-year-old child that this is was a real thing. She didn’t believe me, so I had to dust off the ol’ Elephunk CD and put in the archaic optical media player to prove my point. She was fairly aghast that the song was made at all.


There’s always a preface that starts with a big


(and I cannot lie).


I didn’t even realize they had made a clean version.

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The phrase “Let’s Get Retarded” reportedly stems from West Coast slang, and it was intended to mean “let’s go wild on the dance floor,” akin to other colloquial phrases like “Go Dumb” and “Get/Go Stupid.”

I find that hard to believe about the West Coast of the US since on the East Coast of the US “retarded” when used colloquially as slang always meant stupid/a moron, in most situations. Only a clinician would use “retarded” to describe a person with a form of mental disability on a daily basis.

No, everybody else who was using it was using it as an insult based on the imputation of having a mental disability, and anyone who says different is lying.

You know, like “moron”. Or “spaz” or “spastic”. Or (and this is showing my age and possibly nationality) “mong” (short for “mongoloid”, an obsolete and insulting in its own right term for people with Down’s Syndrome).

And when those terms were stomped on, then you started hearing “are you challenged?” (as in “learning challenged”) or “go back to your special class”.

I’ve heard “'sperging out” in the wild. I’m still not sure exactly what it’s supposed to mean, but I do know that it’s turned “Asperger’s Syndrome” into an easy-to-handle epithet. “Autistic screeching”. “Post-Autistic Economics” is a technical term, and I’ve been told off for objecting to it, but even there the whole point of it when it was coined was that it’s an insult.


The US Social Security Administration didn’t stop using mental retardation as a term for people with Intellectual disabilities unit January 28, 2013.
We are replacing the term “mental retardation” with “intellectual disability” in our Listing of Impairments (listings) that we use to evaluate claims involving mental disorders in adults and children under titles II and XVI of the Social Security Act (Act) and in other appropriate sections of our rules. This change reflects the widespread adoption of the term “intellectual disability” by Congress, government agencies, and various public and private organizations.
Its usage was not intended as an insult.

The American Psychiatric Association did not stop using Mental Retardation until DSM-5 was released on May,18, 2013.

This also was not intended as an insult.

So I’ll amend my original statement to say only clinicians and bureaucrats did not use retarded as an insult,

It was originally a technical term, and the pejoration treadmill turned it into an insult.

It was used by specialists in the field, clinicians, bureaucrats, administrators, whatever, until they caught up to how the term had been used in the street for decades.

Moron was originally also a euphemism which became a technical term which became an insult. (IIRC it was a level of intellectual disability (or, as it was at the time, “mental retardation”) less severe than the also technical term of “idiot”.

“Spasticity” is still the technical term for the condition which affects the muscles in conditions like Cerebral Palsy. And it had been a schoolyard term of abuse for decades before the Spastic Society changed its name to Scope. On the one hand, there was tradition and brand recognition and “it’s the correct technical term dammit” and, when all other excuses failed, “we don’t intend it as an insult”, and on the other hand this was all in increasing defiance of what the word was understood to mean literally everywhere else.


Jimmy Fallon Seriously GIF by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

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