This is the degrading, devaluing reality thrust upon disabled people every day of our lives.
In the USA
The Americans With Disabilities Act has been law for more than a quarter of a century and barriers abound. Another generation has had to contend with exclusion. How can anyone reasonably argue that we are moving too fast on
Wheelchair or …
There’s one question that I will probably never respond “yes” to and I was asked it tonight: Neighbor: ”Can I borrow your wheelchair?” For many disabled people, a wheelchair is more than a mobility aid. It doesn’t get loaned out.
(Nondisabled) neighbor: ”I don’t like the term disabled. I prefer differently-abled.” Why are so many nondisabled people determined to identify disabled people with euphemistic terms?
Disabled people, and only disabled people, should define our identity.
Pedestrian(seeing wheelchair): ”Let me push you.” Me: ”No, thanks.” Pedestrian:”C’mon, I’ll do it. (Starts pushing chair) Me: ”You need to stop.” Pedestrian: ”No need to be rude.”
Offering to help is a good thing. Pushing a wheelchair without consent is not.
The one-step entrance at stores, offices & residences is the source of infinite frustration for disabled people. So easily remedied, yet so often ignored. For many, it is the difference between entry and exclusion. It is the antithesis of the welcome mat.
All quotes are by New York lawyer Gregory Mansfield. If you are on Twitter, make sure to follow him.