The National Stuttering Association is extremely troubled by a recent tweet by President Trump directed at former Vice President Joe Biden’s speech at an event in Delaware on Saturday, March 16, 2019.
Media reports indicate that Biden misspoke about his looming decision whether he will seek the Democratic nomination for president in 2020.
President Trump wrote that Biden was “unable to properly deliver a very simple line,” and referred to Biden as “another low I.Q. individual.”
Biden, who previously served as a keynote speaker at the 2004 NSA Annual Conference, is open about discussing his experiences with stuttering.
Rhetoric that perpetuates false information about stuttering – such as that used in President Trump’s tweet – diminishes the successes of people who stutter and reduces stuttering to fabricated predictor of their ability to achieve.
Stuttering is not a reflection of an individual’s intelligence. Conflating a person’s stuttering with an inability to communicate reinforces harmful false stereotypes.
Based on decades of research, the precise causes of stuttering are still unknown, although most researchers now consider stuttering to be a neurological condition that interferes with the production of speech. In some people, the tendency to stutter may be inherited. Although the interference with speech is sometimes triggered by emotional or situational factors, stuttering is basically neurological and physiological – not psychological – in nature.
We invite President Trump and anyone else who is interested in learning more about the latest stuttering research, the challenges faced by people who stutter, and the work that the NSA does every day to support people who stutter to visit http://www.westutter.org.