Ableism Isn’t Nonviolent-You’re Killing Us

Crutches and Spice

Daniel Harris | Mirror UK
I wish I could come up with some clever reaction to the recent deaths of disabled peoples in the last few months. It would make things easier. Instead, I’m going to make your lives a bit more difficult and ask one simple question: how valuable are disabled lives when they’re not inspirational?I once described ableism in terms and stereotypes everyone could understand, but I seem to have been talking to a wall. So, I’ll be blunt. You, as an able-bodied person, are conditioned to watching people like me die over and over again and not to question a thing. You feed yourselves story lines where disabled people are used for their inspirational capital and discarded once the protagonist has gotten where they are meant to be in life. You describe our suicides as freeing and peaceful not even realizing that same rationale was used…

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Stop Praising Able-bodies for Treating Disabled People Like Human Beings

Something that seems obvious, but apparently isn’t.

Running with Crutches

Periodically, memes and news stories about able-bodied people befriending, helping, and even inviting people with disabilities to prom swirl on social media. To many, these stories are heartwarming and may even “replenish one’s faith in mankind.”. Undoubtedly, hearing about these events is more pleasant than hearing about bombings, robberies, or murders, however, these stories also belittle disabled people. The world needs to wake up and understand that disabled people are human beings, and therefore, have no less value than their able-bodied peers.

Many articles write “Girl takes friend in wheelchair to prom,” and the comments section is spilling over with positive responses like “What a sweet girl,” or “What a lucky boy,” and what these commenters fail to notice is that they are promoting the stigma against disabilities in society. If an able-bodied girl asked her able-bodied friend to prom, people would not praise her for making her friend feel…

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Why I’m Marching: Charlotte Ernst

Just because “we” don’t experience it, doesn’t mean it’s not real.

Families For Justice

Photo credit: Bella Toso and Meley Akpa Photo credit: Bella Toso and Meley Akpa

Recently, I shared a heartbreaking essay on Facebook that a 13-year old girl had written. She bravely posted about how it feels to be black in America and, more specifically, how it makes her hate herself. This article received 4 likes.

A few hours later, I changed my Facebook profile picture. That received 137 likes.

You might think “It’s not my fault a little girl feels this way. I’m not racist.” Or you make statements like ” I don’t see race, we’re all the same” so you don’t need to be paying attention to what people of color are saying, You’ve got this. “We have a black president, lets move on.” you assert.  So you go on with your life, while America burns.

That’s how it was for me until I married an African American man and we had our 4 children.

If you grew up like…

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Lyssa and Me

Cara sits in the chair to my right. She looks everywhere but at me; at the floor, at my desk, at her hands. I read through the notes from my colleague’s consultation last month, and the letters from various agencies. Now twenty-two, Cara crashed out of university in what is described as a psychotic episode four years ago. Called to the lecturer’s office to discuss an unsatisfactory assignment, she refused to speak and ran from the room. Several staff attempted to restrain her, resulting in frantic head-banging until she was removed by ambulance to the local psychiatric department.

The years since then have been a pattern of admissions after similar episodes. Staff on the ward note that once she recovers she is calm and appropriate, but very scared of some of the more labile patients. She has moved from hostel to hostel, and has no friends, or support system

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Autism Society statement on the beating of Aaron Hill

“We at the Autism Society are shocked and saddened by the Aug. 8 beating of Aaron Hill, a 16-year-old with autism in Okeechobee, Florida. The actions of Andrew Wheeler, 18, who admitted to attacking Hill, were the unthinkable result of a series moral failures. That Wheeler would hit Hill, drag him by his hair, choke him and hold a knife to his throat is nothing short of horrifying. That several partygoers would have such a lack of concern for a fellow human as to stand feet from Wheeler and watch him seriously injure Hill is deeply disturbing. And that Evadean Lydecker Dailey, who is accused of buying alcohol for the teenagers’ party at her home, helped create an illegal and dangerous situation is yet another unbelievable transgression in this case….”