Saturday, August 9, 2008

Message from Dark Knight 13

I copied this message from my friend Dark Knight who posted this question to parents like me on Patricia Bauer's site here

How can you all so egregiously miss the satiric point of Simple Jack? It is not making fun of those with mental retardation; instead, it is satirizing the callous actors and actresses in Hollyweird that exploit those individuals and use such roles to bolster their Oscar chances and make themselves seem socially conscious. The use of words like “retard” simply emphasize the actors’ complete lack of empathy for the subject of their portrayal. If I had a child with this disability, I’d find Sean Penn’s and Rosie o’ Donnell’s “serious” movies much more offensive than Simple Jack.

Don’t boycott Tropic Thunder…instead use that Simple Jack subplot as an example to Hollywood of what you will no longer tolerate from movies about the developmentally disabled. After all, to paraphrase Jonathan Swift, the point of satire is to point out flaws in the hopes of redeeming them.

First, I don't know where to start but how about with the quote from Jonathan Swift who also said "satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody's face but their own."

Jonathan Swift relied on creative genius to write his satires about political injustices and minority causes. Ben Stiller on the other hand, has relied on cheap shots using farce to exploit the "industry standard" depicting our family and friends.

In all honesty, Dark Knight 13 my friend, I don't have issues with Rosie, Dustin, Sean, Cuba or anyone who wants to take on the challenge of portraying my family and friends. More power to them. If you or anyone else thinks these actors look ridiculous doing it, well maybe you don't feel comfortable with "disability" or how it looks.

Yes, sometimes "it" looks strange. It looks "weird" to some people, too. Often times, it makes people uncomfortable. Regardless, my family and friends are not their disability. They are people first so if their humanity can be conveyed through acting somehow, more power to the acting guild.

On the other hand, if you think Rosie, Dustin, Sean, Cuba or anybody else were trying to pity, politicize, parody, or patronize our family and friends, please use a platform different then a farce-comedy directed at the illiterati, ignorami, and idioti with a movie tag line "never go full retard."

1 comment:

Nick McGivney said...

We do what we do because we love, and spreading that message is tough, especially when it seems like we're being spoken down to by people who 'get it' (and in reality are clueless through inexperience). But we're no strangers to this, are we? Keep fighting the good fight, Elsiabeth's mom.