John Franklin Stephens, a Special Olympics athlete with Down syndrome, has penned an open letter to conservative pundit and provocateur Ann Coulter in response to this tweet from Monday night after the presidential debate:

The offensive tweet was met with outrage by many, including fellow conservative author Michelle Malkin. But instead of apologizing, Coulter –never one to shy away from controversy — compounded the remark, using the “r-word” yet again in this tweet Tuesday:

Stephens’ response to Coulter’s bigotry, however, is truly touching, thoughtful and heartfelt. In short, it’s better than what she deserved.

The letter reads in part:

After I saw your tweet, I realized you just wanted to belittle the President by linking him to people like me. You assumed that people would understand and accept that being linked to someone like me is an insult and you assumed you could get away with it and still appear on TV.

I have to wonder if you considered other hateful words but recoiled from the backlash.

Well, Ms. Coulter, you, and society, need to learn that being compared to people like me should be considered a badge of honor.

No one overcomes more than we do and still loves life so much.

He ends his amazing letter by inviting Coulter to “join us someday at Special Olympics. See if you can walk away with your heart unchanged.”

You can read the full text here.

— Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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