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Wednesday, 20 April 2016

From the inside ...

Disability rights and inclusion of people with all kinds of disabilities in every aspect of their own individual lives and community life continue to evolve.

Parents, families and carers have often had the loudest voice as disability movements emerged, and now we are hearing much more from people with disabilities themselves.

We all need to pay attention, even (especially) if what they are saying is that we have been getting it wrong, or that we can at least do a whole lot better. People with intellectual disabilities might struggle more than most to have their voices heard, but that too is emerging, and there is much to learn from other disabled people (as they often tell us they wish to be called, notwithstanding that we have previously often demanded, and continue to demand 'person first' language on their behalf). These are just a few examples worth attending to:

Basic Myths about Disability I Can’t Believe We Still Have to Debunk
Sarah Blahovec, Huffington Post (blog), 4 April 2016
To be honest, I was really hoping that what I’m about to write was common knowledge by now. I really wish that society in general understood disability better, but in light of a number of concerning articles recently, from a USA Today article about people “faking” disability during travel, to a New York Times Magazine article about parents stunting the growth of disabled children through estrogen treatments, it seems necessary to counter the basic inaccurate beliefs people have about disability and those who live with it ...

Choreography of Care
Alice Wong, Making Contact, 14 April 2016 (Audio 11m 33s)
Community Storytelling Fellow, Alice Wong asks, how do people with disabilities who rely on personal assistance negotiate their relationships with the people that assist them? And how does that inform their sense of independence or interdependence with others? ...

'Disabled': Just #SayTheWord
Barbara J King, (US) National Public Radio (NPR), 25 February 2016
... I noticed this posting on Facebook by Lawrence Carter-Long:
"If you 'see the person not the disability' you're only getting half the picture. Broaden your perspective. You might be surprised by everything you've missed. DISABLED. ‪#‎SayTheWord"
I understood intuitively the thought that many people with physical limitations wouldn't want to have this part of their lived experience erased by others. But admonitions that the term "disabled person" is inappropriate and disrespectful firmly stuck in my mind ...

I Don’t Have “Special” Needs…
JasonsConnection, 11 February 2016
I don’t have “special” needs. That might offend some, but it is the truth.

I am not denying that I need help or that I have a disability. But the needs I have are not “special,”—they’re needs everyone has. I want what most people want out of life. Relationships with people, meaningful use of my time, a position that earns me some form of respect, and so on ...

History Made Me Do It
Dave Hingsburger, Of Battered Aspect, 12 March 2016
... My decision, I believe, was looked at in the context of their lives, not in the context of mine.

I think this is why so many people don't get prejudice, they don't understand why a person might react to something that they see as a neutral because they've had the luxury of having lived a life in neutral ...

A Woman on A Bus
Dave Hingsburger, Of Battered Aspect, 13 march 2016
... I tried telling a couple of other people and both of them saw the conversation in a way that it hadn't been experienced. No matter how I tried to present the conversation as a conversation, the mention of the woman and her communication board, turned the conversation into an act of charity, an act of giving ...
Are your characters tragically disabled or magically disabled?
... Trope #1. The Tragically Disabled

You know this one. It goes all the way back to when disabilities started being represented in literature. And that’s a long time. Like, ever since there has been literature ...

... Trope #2. The Magically Disabled

Moving on to trope #2, the “magically disabled.” This trope is a common one in SF/Fantasy books. Here, a character develops a disability but magically (or scientifically) overcomes the disability to the point where he or she isn’t disabled any more ...

4 Things You Should Ask Yourself Before Sharing Inspiration Porn On Social Media
Kimmie Jones, Ravishly, 18 April 2016
Facebook posts can easily shape-shift into 21st​-century sideshows.

Spring is here, meaning prom season is upon us. As much as my 33-year-old self loves the vicarious joy in seeing what the kids are into — which is decidedly not French twists and chokers anymore — I shudder at the thought that my news feed will soon be inundated with a certain kind of prom-posal that stresses me out ...

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