Today is International Day of the Disabled.
I’m sitting on the floor of a motel room in Mexico with my beloved, beautiful daughter next to me. She’s trying to bat her eyelashes at me and ask for Dora. She is winsome. She is charming. She is completely and utterly adorable.
I think about disability – hers and mine. How I end up writing so much about hers because her tribe is still, far and away, the most discriminated against out of all of us on the disability spectrum.
I think about my own deaf tribe and how isolated we are among the general population. I think about mental disabilities and how even I will hesitate to write about it because of the stigma associated with them. I think about Star Trek and the value of disability. I think about the gay and lesbian community and what we, the disabled community, can learn from them. I think about the Hawaiian monarchy movement and what we can also learn from that piece of history and apply to our own rights movement.
I think about the sexy club that I passed last night, the one that was next to some run down center with a large sign with a blue wheelchair outside of it, and thought of how that needs to change. Disability doesn’t have to be so… disease-ridden, medical, unsexy, run-down, beige coloured. It really doesn’t. It is not about that.
So what is it about?
It’s about the way we move. It’s about the way we hear, the way we see, perceive, think, feel, experience our world. We all do it in a way that is our own. It might be difficult to understand how another does this if it’s different from the way you yourself do it, but that doesn’t make it less or more; it’s just a different way.
But understanding, accepting and more, valuing it, will add variety to our lives, it will make the universal stew that our human race is creating more complex, rich and worth savouring.
I “came out” as a disabled person fully and completely after Moxie was born. I changed my life. Rather than seeking to “pass” as a person without disability, I embraced who I really am for the first time, and along with that, my own child.
My journey in that acceptance is captured in my compilation of essays from this blog.
In honour of today, I will be giving the e-book away this week – the link to download it is here: 4 Years: Essays from the Blog, A Little Moxie
If you don’t have a device that can read the e-book, the PDF is here.
Now, your gift to me.
Please take a moment to participate in this teleconference if you can –
Senator Harkin Asks Community Groups to Join Him on the Phone this Wednesday, December 3rd, for an International Disability Rights Day
discussion of the U.N. Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD)
On Wednesday afternoon, December 3, Senator Tom Harkin
invites disability advocates to join him on a teleconference discussion regarding United States ratification of the international disability rights treaty (CRPD). December 3 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, commemorating the fight for equality, opportunity and access for people with disabilities now taking place all over the world.
Our fight is not over in the United States and December 3rd is an appropriate day to come together to take note of our progress to date and commit to continuing to work together and to expand our support in order to reach our goal of U.S. ratification of the CRPD.
National disability leaders will be listening and we invite
state and local disability advocacy organizations to bring their staff and consumers together around the phone to hear Senator Harkin’s remarks at this moment in the history of disability rights in the United States.
What: National Message from Senator Tom Harkin on CRPD
When: Wednesday, December 3, at 2:00 Eastern (1:00 Central; 12:00 Mountain; 11 a.m. Pacific)
Teleconference Line: (202)
228-0808 or (855) 428-0808
Conference ID: 2767894
this article on The Convention of the Rights of the Disabled.
and this one, by Judy Heumann (written last year but sadly, still relevant)
Thank you xoxox
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