Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
In the News

Special Olympics Athletes Can Heal the Nation

In a Washington Post Op-Ed, Timothy Shriver, Special Olympics Chairman of the Board, explains why athletes are role models when it comes to inclusion and acceptance.
Mario Horn, Shadi Brightfield, and Tim Shriver at a Snowboarding Event

The following is an excerpt from “To heal our divisions, listen to people with intellectual disabilities,” an op-ed by Timothy Shriver for the Washington Post.

“Today, most Americans have concluded that there is a group that is just too “other” to deserve respect or inclusion. For many, it’s Trump voters. For others, it’s liberal elites. For others, it’s certain people of faith or people of color. The pattern is familiar. Some person or group has a quality, characteristic or belief that provokes a judgment so extreme it cannot be tolerated. “They” don’t deserve our respect or welcome. Therefore, they are hopeless, of no value. We must defeat, fix or crush them.

Special Olympics can’t solve the political or cultural challenges of our time, but it can offer some lessons worth learning.

First, have faith, not necessarily in a particular religion or creed but in the goodness within every person. Choose to believe that everyone has something valuable and beautiful to offer. A deeply felt faith in the goodness within each person was the first step in healing the vicious prejudices against people with intellectual disabilities. People who believed in them refused to accept the judgments of those who didn’t.”

Read the full article here.

Recommended Content

Timothy Shriver pens NBC Op-ED Explaining Federal School Funding

Special Olympics survived Betsy DeVos' attempt to axe our school programs. Here's what we do for America's kids.
1 Min Read

Kayla McKeon

Kayla McKeon is changing laws and attitudes as the first registered lobbyist with Down syndrome. As the Manager of Grassroots Advocacy with the National Down Syndrome Society, Kayla brings her personal story to the Nation’s Capital.

Man with Intellectual Disability Remains on Death Row Despite Ruling

The Supreme Court should block the execution of a Texas man with intellectual disability—again, a Los Angeles Times op-ed by Timothy Shriver.
1 Min Read