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Is the term 'moron' not ok to use?

(165 Posts)
MarshmallowFluffee Wed 13-Sep-17 16:18:36

So I would use the term moron to describe someone who has done something stupid (like the person who cannot wait two seconds to let someone through a gap on a packed road and then causes a massive jam by getting stuck in the middle of the road).

I would NEVER use it to describe someone with a mental disability or additional needs. Same as I would never use the word 'retard'. Actually I wouldn't use the word retard to describe anyone but I wasn't aware until today (another thread) that you shouldn't use the word moron any more.

What do others think?

SuzukiLi Wed 13-Sep-17 16:19:51

I've only ever seen outrage on mumsnet. It's quite commonly used where I am.

HappyLabrador Wed 13-Sep-17 16:22:28

I use it to describe stupid people who do stupid things.

I don't give a shit what the Mumsnet collective thinks.

Polter Wed 13-Sep-17 16:25:07

I try not to use any words related to intellectual disability (or disability in general) as insults.

villainousbroodmare Wed 13-Sep-17 16:27:15

I believe that in the past, it was a (quasi-?) medical term to describe a person in a particular IQ range. Also cretin and imbecile.

SumThucker Wed 13-Sep-17 16:28:28

Barring swear words I wouldn't use any word which is offensive, no matter how old I am if I learn it is so.

I'm not a dick.

Ttbb Wed 13-Sep-17 16:29:16

Like idiot, moron was once used to describe people with a certain level of mental impairment. Also like idiot that is no longer the case. Anyone who gets their knickers in a twist over it needs to learn to be less hypersensitive

redemptionsongs Wed 13-Sep-17 16:29:19

i've never heard of moron or imbecile being used for the intellectually disabled, I am surprised at this too.

MorelloKisses Wed 13-Sep-17 16:30:01

This is an odd one as 'moron' has a derivation from the Greek to mean foolish and is commonly used to denote foolishness. Additionally, it was used for a short period in history to describe a medical diagnosis related to intelligence. I'm not sure that this is widely known and isn't the origin of the word.

I believe when this word is used it is typically with relation to the original Greek meaning of foolish.

Even the dictionary definitions carry 2 separate meanings.

Polter Wed 13-Sep-17 16:30:24

Cretinism is a disability linked to congenital thyroid hormone deficiency.

TheFallenMadonna Wed 13-Sep-17 16:32:31

I think the scale was idiot, imbecile, moron. With idiot being the most severe.

PerfumeIsAMessage Wed 13-Sep-17 16:33:28

No it isn't.
As many pointed out earlier today on the thread where it was used.

redemptionsongs Wed 13-Sep-17 16:33:38

yes, cretin, flid, spaz, all of those words clearly relate to a disability - i've just never heard moron being used like this.

Imbecile i thought was a french insult, again just meaning someone making bad decisions.

MarshmallowFluffee Wed 13-Sep-17 16:33:46

I'm not a dick either Sum Thucker but I'm asking a genuine question.
I'd never heard that it was an offensive term, not sure it is really from the replies on here. Sometimes people seem to be professionally offended.

TheFallenMadonna Wed 13-Sep-17 16:34:35

I think they were all words used previous to their use to medically describe an intellectual disability. And they are no longer used medically.

redemptionsongs Wed 13-Sep-17 16:35:05

wiki says i'm wrong on imbecile however. Hmmm going to have to re-think this. Similarly moron as an IQ category, never ever heard of this.

MarshmallowFluffee Wed 13-Sep-17 16:35:25

Perfume - it is offensive or it's not offensive? My title has made your reply a bit confusing - double negatives! I got a bit bored with that thread tbh and didn't read all of it, just noticed one or two comments about 'moron'.

TittyGolightly Wed 13-Sep-17 16:36:29

Moron is Welsh for carrots.

Polter Wed 13-Sep-17 16:36:51

Unless you're Welsh and you'd be calling people carrots.

SumThucker Wed 13-Sep-17 16:36:54

I wasn't actually calling you a dick, MarshmallowFluffee, it was aimed at people who would carry on using it on here, even when they know some people are offended by it. I think those people are dicks.

Josiah Wed 13-Sep-17 16:38:02

But Gordon IS a moron.

tangledup123 Wed 13-Sep-17 16:40:18

Words change their meaning over time. I think 'moron' is fine in 2017 and I'll continue to use it.

HappyLabrador Wed 13-Sep-17 16:44:01

I wasn't actually calling you a dick, MarshmallowFluffee, it was aimed at people who would carry on using it on here, even when they know some people are offended by it. I think those people are dicks.

The trouble is SumThucker, if everyone avoided using words that offended someone, none of us would ever speak again...

ponderingprobably Wed 13-Sep-17 16:44:36

I try not to use any words related to intellectual disability (or disability in general) as insults.

Absolutely agree, Polter. Because these words have been regularly used as insults they have now become offensive. Sadly it still continues, with newer diagnostic terms - so my DS informs me. The sentiment is exactly the same but the words have changed with the times. This and people indulging in 'pop diagnosis' erodes perceptions of valid diagnoses. Disability discrimination is ever present.

sleepymama81 Wed 13-Sep-17 16:44:59

I'll be really honest, I don't associate the words moron, imbecile, cretin or idiot as someone with any sort of disability impairment. I use them all, to describe someone (usually OH) who has done or said something daft/stupid. Although not cretin much because to me that's someone a bit more malevolent or mean- not sure why. I've never considered them offensive to disabled people at all, I'd use them in the same way that I'd use prat or buffoon. Most people I know would use them, including my friend who is a carer for adults with learning disabilities (never to describe her service users I should add). If I said or did something stupid I have no doubt she say 'Sleep you moron!' and I wouldn't think anything of it.

I would never use the terms retard, flid, spaz, mong. Those to me refer directly to someone who is disabled in a derogatory way.

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