Top 10 Reasons to use Dignifying Language about those with Autism
(or any disability)
10. We are more alike than different
9. We are all disabled somehow
8. You likely love someone on the spectrum since it affects 1 in 95 children
7. You wouldn't want to offend someone in the room
6. We are all made in God's image
5. The Golden Rule is to love your neighbor as yourself; it's how you'd want to be treated
4. Words change our perception of others
3. People meet the expectations we set for them; your words impact another's identity
2. A person is a person; a soul is a soul
1. You have influence over others
Of course this begs the question: What is dignifying language? Kathie Snow at Disability is Natural has ammassed a wealth of articles here that define people-first language quite well.
John Tomkins work in developing Green Language is also excellent. Exploring his site for a couple minutes makes you mindful of your tongue in new ways. There are many ways to interact with his site, games for kids, and explanations of how our brains react to language and how words lead to behavior. We can all improve on this. And it's a matter of life or death according to the Bible.
Words are powerful; take them seriously. Words can be your salvation. Words can also be your damnation." Matthew 12:33-35 The Message