A Great Example for Others

Actress Lauren Potter of "Glee"

Fox’s hit series “Glee” is a great example of creating tolerance and acceptance for all people by displaying situations of inclusion for people with disabilities. Check out some of the examples of how the show fosters respect for people with intellectual disabilities:

  • In a great example of tolerance, Kurt’s dad tells Finn not to use derogatory language and equates the R-word to other slurs.
  • Glee also regularly features actress Lauren Potter, who has Down syndrome. She plays cheerleader Becky and is treated as a friend and classmate by all the other students.
  • In addition to her presence on the show, Lauren has teamed up with Spread the Word to End the Word, Special Olympics and AbilityPath.org to help put an end to bullying in schools. According to AbilityPath.org’s recent study about bullying among children with special needs called “Walk a Mile in Their Shoes,” nearly 60 percent of students with disabilities are bullied in their schools.  
  • Lauren joined Special Olympics CEO Tim Shriver on CNN to talk about her experience with bullying and explain why she’s Spreading the Word to End the Word.   

What you can do to put an end to hurtful and abusive language and actions in schools:


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  • I have a brother who has Muscular Dystrophy and is continually fighting for his life. I hear the r word all the time with him. I can't stand it. I pledge to end the R wor...

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    Paul Davis

    Edmond , Oklahoma
    1293 hours ago

  • As a father with a child on the Autism Spectrum I have come to know the broad reach of both the word itsrlf and the pain in which it inflicts. I pledge and support the el...

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    Shelbyville , Tennessee
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    Tampa, Florida
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    Jakarta Utara, Indonesia
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  • As an advocate for kids and adults with special needs, I pledge to always fight for the rights of my students and peers, and will promote "spread the word to end the word...

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    Lincoln, Nebraska
    1365 hours ago

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