To complain about this language, I think it's disablist?

(128 Posts)
Lambzig Thu 25-Jul-13 17:50:05

I recently went on a speed awareness course with AA Drivetech. Totally my mistake and stupid fault for speeding and I found the course content interesting and useful.

However, one thing is really bothering me. The course talks a lot about how speeding over 30 mph can have severe and fatal impacts during any accidents. The trainer referred on at least 3 occasions to people being "left as cabbages" or "if it didn't kill you, you would be a cabbage".

I thought it was inappropriate and offensive, and wished I had said something at the time, but the whole delivery was a bit intimidating.

It's just over a week ago now, but its praying on my mind. DH thinks I am being a teeny bit preciou, that they use emotive language and that if I complain it will look like I am being petty for having to go on the course (some people there were so aggressive about it). I think AA would want to stop it being said and that I should complain.

Am I overreacting?

Secretswitch Thu 25-Jul-13 19:35:02

I do not think you are being precious or misguided in the least. As a women with a prosthetic leg, I know I find it delightful when someone refers to me as a cripple or gimp.For God's sake bring back the good old days when we cold just spout whatever racist, homophobic, disabilist, garbage we wanted!
YANBU..

HardlyMotherTheresa Thu 25-Jul-13 19:35:38

I agree with zatya and think many posters here are missing the important point: stopping idiots driving too fast which is a causative factor in many serious injuries.

By all means focus on a petty mis-use of language (the term "cabbage' is indeed offensive but it won't kill anyone) if you want but I find it very odd. SPEEDING is offensive.

Well done OP for coming right out with it being your "mistake" (not sure how you drive fast by mistake though) and for taking on board some of the messages of the course (I hope). I am not getting at you in particular but am surprised you are picking on the instructor and not some of the prats on the course who had chosen to speed thus risking injury to others for the sake of a bit of excitement or a few second saved for themselves.

PolterGoose Thu 25-Jul-13 19:35:43

It is offensive. Please complain.

hazeyjane Thu 25-Jul-13 19:37:46

vegetative state – when a person is awake but showing no signs of awareness

From nhs choices, to describe various types of brain injury.

Zatyaballerina, do you not think that someone who has severe brain injury, possibly resulting in a lack of awareness, or very minimal awareness is still a person, who deserves respect and dignity? And that their families are deserving of sensitivity?

ilovesooty Thu 25-Jul-13 19:38:17

SPEEDING is offensive

No one said it wasn't. One offensive act or concept doesn't preclude something else being offensive.

McNewPants2013 Thu 25-Jul-13 19:40:28

Two wrongs don't make a right.

I hope the op has learnt what speed limits are for and she will in future keep to the speed limit. However this isn't a thread about the wrongs of speeding.

GiveItYourBestShot Thu 25-Jul-13 19:40:28

I don't think it would be unreasonable to complain, not least because your discomfort at the language has distracted you from the important content that they want you to remember!

I went on one recently and the instructor showed photos of real local accidents. The victims in one of the crashes were personally known to one of the other people in the room. I thought that was pretty crass. There's making a point, and there's causing needless pain...

GiveItYourBestShot Thu 25-Jul-13 19:42:42

hardlyMotherTeresa it is possible to speed by mistake by for example, thinking you are in a 40 not a 30 if you missed the sign marking the change.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 19:43:56

That is best example of a straw man argument I have seen in a long time.

People are missing the point. Really?

Rubbish.

The speeding issue is separate. But if you do want to mix the two up I would say this,

if you wish to educate someone who is selfish enough to speed (sorry op) you will be doing them no favours by teaching them that it is is acceptable to use terms that reduce a human being to an object with no feelings or rights.

How will this increase ability to think about others when they are doing 100mph in a 60mph zone?

MikeOxard Thu 25-Jul-13 19:45:41

I agree with Zatya and Hardly.

You are trying to claw back some moral high ground by saying 'he used insensitive language about disabled people' when the reason you were there listening to him talking about those people, is because YOU were the one risking making someone disabled. Get off your high horse and concentrate on the more important things about the course.

Ilovemyself Thu 25-Jul-13 19:47:52

Giveityourbestshot. You should know if the limit changes as there will be repeaters. If the repeaters vanish and you are in a built up area or there are lamp posts then it is a 30 limit. So there is no excuse for speeding by mistake.

ilovesooty Thu 25-Jul-13 19:48:25

You are trying to claw back some moral high ground

Bollocks she is: it's a completely separate issue. She also admitted being at fault and made positive use of the course.

SlangWhangering Thu 25-Jul-13 19:48:38

I would let the people running the course know. It is not a nice thing to say. I dont think you need to be 'outraged' and angry. Just let them know, I would bet they will sort it out.

Ilovemyself Thu 25-Jul-13 19:50:24

Hi MrsDeVere. I don't think you would be on a speed awareness course for 100 in a 60........

Flojobunny Thu 25-Jul-13 19:52:05

I think 'vegetative state' needs updating too, I find that offensive.

GiveItYourBestShot Thu 25-Jul-13 19:55:27

ilovemyeelf i know that, but there are a lot of people who have no idea that lampposts + no other signs = 30mph. Until they've done a speed awareness course, that is.

When I speed I do it deliberately....

Flojobunny Thu 25-Jul-13 19:59:19

Lamp posts hmm

Ilovemyself Thu 25-Jul-13 20:02:15

Giveityourbest. Those that don't know are not accidentally breaking the law. Ignorance is no defence. If you get behind the wheel of a car you should know the rules. And know how to park a Q7 ( sorry lol)

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 20:03:48

Is that important Ilove.
My point is clear.

Why muddy the waters further with yet another irrelevance?

If you want to educate people to behave in a way that acknowledges the importance of fellow human beings you do not do it by using language that reduces people to the level of a vegetable.

GiveItYourBestShot Thu 25-Jul-13 20:04:52

Motherteresa didn't ask people could speed by accident, she asked how people could speed by mistake. I have suggested one way in which you can be mistaken about the speed limit in force on a road. Go away and polish your halo if you have never, ever, once made a mistake behind the wheel. Because I won't believe you. But yes, if you drive it you should be able to park it ;)

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 20:05:58

Mike that makes no sense whatsoever.

The op has admitted she was speeding. She went on the course. She listened intently enough to notice the language used.

It IS offensive. There is no question that comparing a human being to a foodstuff with no brain, no emotion and no importance IS offensive.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 20:07:34

If I speed and I get caught I have no defence.

When I drive my OH's car it is much harder for me to gauge my speed. His car is newer, bigger and much smoother.

But I know that so if I get caught out because I am not paying attention I have not been speeding deliberately but it is still my fault.

susiedaisy Thu 25-Jul-13 20:13:53

I think cabbage is inappropriate and outdated, it is along the same lines as words like retard and mongrel I grew up in the 1970's hearing those words but thankfully we have moved on.

Ilovemyself Thu 25-Jul-13 20:14:22

Tbh I have no real problem with a lot of language that people find offensive. As they are only words.

And the comment about 100 in a 60 was not, in my opinion, irrelevant as they would be feeling the full force of the law and are not the sort of people the course is aimed at.

MrsDeVere Thu 25-Jul-13 20:21:12

I wonder if anyone would think it ok to have their child or mother referred to as a cabbage?

Regardless of their state of consciousness. If someone told you they thought your dear old mum was a cabbage.

Would you think it was a term of endearment or an insult?

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