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AfriGeneas at the Movies

“Tropic Thunder”

Protesters silently picket new comedy
By Jamon Smith Staff Writer
Published: Thursday, August 14, 2008 at 3:30 a.m.

The movie, a spoof directed by and starring Ben Stiller, includes frequent use of the word “retard.”
“The ‘R’ word hurts” said Robbie Lewis, 40, a member of People First of Alabama. “It makes me feel bad when I hear it.”
People First of Alabama joined a national protest that included Special Olympics and the American Association of People with Disabilities. The groups called for a boycott of the film as it made its theatrical debut Wednesday.

In “Tropic Thunder,” Stiller plays a fading action star desperate to be taken seriously as an actor after he just made a flop in which he portrayed a severely mentally ill man.

“Our particular objection to this movie is the use of the word retard and the movie’s portrayal of it as a humorous term,” said Mike Marion, state coordinator of People First. “They use it like it’s a cool and acceptable way to talk about people


18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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