Thursday, May 03, 2007

Thoughts on Blogging Against Disablism Day

Tuesday’s Blogging Against Disablism Day was a rousing success. I have read posts that were thought provoking, sad, insightful, funny, and informative - all exploring the many varied aspects and perspectives on disablism. Thanks to everybody who read and commented on my post.

I feel enriched, encouraged and invigorated.

I didn’t really have favorites from the day. Each post was unique - it's worth reading every single one.

Here’s a sampling of quotes from the day:

"Bullies and teachers had made it very clear to me which of my traits were desirable and which were not. Every time I saw myself I saw all those undesirable traits to my disgust and shame."

"He was my grandpa who had gone blind but that was somehow different from him being a blind person to me at that time."

"In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court has been so hostile to disability rights that Congress has started to consider legislation that's aimed at restoring the employment discrimination oversight powers to the ADA."

"So how did anyone get the idea that it's abnormal to need services?"

"Maybe labor and delivery rooms would sound like this,
'It's a boy! No hair, dark eyes, 46 chromosomes! Congratulations'
'It's a girl! Blond curly hair, blue eyes, and 47 chromosomes! Congratulations!'"

"OK, then. Where are you all? Where are the hordes and hordes of disabled bloggers of colour? Huh? What? Where are you?”

"Your finally getting married to the love of your life. Do you:-
(a) Hold your wedding at a restaurant without an elevator, with multiple stairs over many different levels so that your nephew, who is a power chair user, can’t attend.
(b) Invite your neice to be your bridesmaid, knowing that her brother won’t be there to watch her.
(c) Tell your nephew’s family, when they offer to pay the difference it would cost you to change the venue to a more powerchair friendly place, that the day is not about your nephew - it’s about you.
(d) Consider your family and hold the reception in an accessible restaurant/venue so that the whole family can enjoy the day and watch you get married."

Having chronic, invisible & controversial diagnoses also makes you aware that there’s a hierarchy of ‘acceptable’ illnesses.”

“Note that, discrimination against disabled people (at Ellis Island)wasn't a benign oversight, nor an unforeseen consequence of broader policy--disability discrimination was the policy.”

“So where are the self-reflective posts by nondisabled folks about ability, bodily privilege, fear of people with cognitive disabilities, or even angst about becoming impaired? Where is the recognition of participating in and privileging from an ableist culture?”

"We have a couple of people in our lives that have that "deer in the headlights" look whenever they're around us."

"So, there I am, in my wheelchair, waiting to cross the road. The total stranger next to me, having had a good, long, sideways stare, eventually says, “So what’s wrong with you then?”
My options would appear to be:
tell them what my disability is - which is no secret, but really none of their sodding business
say 'You first - what’s wrong with you?' - which will confirm them in their opinion that all disabled people are peculiar and embittered - after all, they were just trying to be nice!"

“. . . what if there was ableist discrimination, if the able-bodied encountered whispers, inaccessible buildings and transport, stares, intrusive and rude comments, and more?”(great 3 minute video demonstrating this point)


Michelle said...

thanks for doing a recap like this - I was able to read a few blogs I hadn't had the chance to yet (still making my way through the list of participants!)

abfh said...

Thanks -- I linked to your Blogging Against Disablism Day essay in my latest post.

Pedro Morgado said...

Blogging against disablism.

Karen Putz said...

Thanks for putting this together, I see a few that I missed.

Elizabeth McClung said...

Great recap - like others, I am now going back to find the ones I missed.