Blogs » According to K » Did ALS joke go too far?


"From one man to another, I hope you get Lou Gehrig's disease," Mark Wahlberg says in the Seth MacFarlane movie, "Ted."

I haven't seen the movie yet, but that line seems to have offended ALS, or Lou Gehrig's disease, patients and advocates.

The ALS Therapy Development Institute sent a letter to "Ted" producers, spelling out their grievances.

"The 'joke' in Ted has fueled continued misinformation and stigma within the general public about what Lou Gehrig’s disease is and what it is not. We hope that you will take the time to listen to your critics, many of which have lost the ability to share those criticisms with you because Lou Gehrig’s disease has robbed them of their ability to speak or write...

"The fact is that more money was spent on the making of Ted than has been spent in the last decade on understanding and stopping Lou Gehrig’s disease," the letter reads.


You'll recall ALS is a devastating -- to say the least -- disease that progressively robs its victims of the ability to move, talk and breathe. There is no cure, no treatment.

We here in Victoria probably have a greater understanding of the disease than most people thanks to a loud and active ALS community that hasn't been afraid to share its most vulnerable moments with all of us.

My friends with ALS and their caregivers have wonderful senses of humor, but I haven't asked them how they feel about this punch line yet. I'd imagine they'd be less offended if it were actually a FUNNY joke about ALS.

Does the line offend you?