Sticking Up For His Kid Got This Dad Fired From His Job

bruce casper crista miller and child

We sometimes get so wrapped up in figuring out the Best Way to Parent that we forget the obvious: It all comes down to setting a good example. It's not always easy, of course, but if you need inspiration, consider Bruce Casper, a dad in Plum, Pennyslvania, who got fired for standing up for his special needs son -- who's too young to even know what's going on.


Bruce works -- correction, worked -- at a Chili's restaurant in the Pittsburgh Mills Mall. He has three kids with his girlfriend, Crista Miller, and their youngest, 16-month-old Kyron, has Down Syndrome.

Last weekend, Bruce was allegedly called a "retard" by two female co-workers. When he pointed out that his son has Down Syndrome and "retard" was not an okay word to use, his manager allegedly told him to leave.

Bruce has hired a lawyer who's advised him to stay mum, but Crista's speaking her mind on Facebook, calling out the Chili's manager for being "completely inappropriate." "Not only for Kyron, but for all kids with special needs, whether it's Down Syndrome or something else," she wrote.

A spokesperson for Chili's Restaurants released the vague statement that you would expect -- sort of "We don't know if this really happened but if it did, it shouldn't have." Bruce was also offered a job at another Chili's, which he declined -- and which we applaud.

More from The Stir:  13 Things Never to Say to the Mom of a Child With Down Syndrome

Standing up for your kids is hard enough when they're old enough to understand you're on their side. But to do so when your son is a toddler and might never even learn of this incident? Now that's impressive.

We're all so busy teaching our kids to be independent and act like little adults that we tend to forget how much they need us. And not just to buckle seat belts and make doctor's appointments, but to lead by example and show them the right way to move through the world -- with courage, kindness, and conviction.

I'm sure being unemployed with three kids is making Bruce wonder, "Did I do the right thing?" But when you're advocating what's best for your child, the answer is always yes.

What would you have done in this situation?


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