Jennifer Aniston Under Fire for Using the Word "Retard"
Days after Jennifer Aniston had a war of words with Fox News anchor Bill O'Reilly about single motherhood, the former Friends star has created an uproar for using the word "retard."
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During a Thursday appearance to promote her new movie, The Switch, on Live with Regis & Kelly, Aniston also discussed dressing up like Barbra Streisand for a recent Harper's Bazaar photo shoot. "Yes, I play dress up! I do it for a living, like a retard," Aniston said.
The comments drew a quick response from many organizations that advocate for those with mental or developmental abilities, including the Special Olympics.
"Special Olympics is always disappointed when the R-word is used, especially by someone who is influential to society," a representative for the organization said in a statement to TVGuide.com. "The pervasive use of the R-word, even in an off the cuff self-deprecating manner, dehumanizes people with intellectual disabilities and perpetuates painful stereotypes that are a great source of suffering and negative stigma."
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Aniston joins a list of celebs, including Howard Stern and Lindsay Lohan, who have been scolded for using the word. "Frankly, someone in her position ought to know better," Peter Berns, CEO of the nonprofit advocacy group The Arc, told TVGuide.com in a statement. "She is using language that is offensive to a large segment of the population in this country. ... Even if it wasn't intended to insult them, that is the effect of it."
An email to Aniston's rep was not immediately returned.
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