GirlWithTheCane

Thoughts on Disney’s Disability Access Service Card (Or, Why it Sometimes Sucks to Be Disabled)

Thoughts on Disney’s Disability Access Service Card (Or, Why it Sometimes Sucks to Be Disabled)

disability service access cardIn the last post that I wrote about Disney’s new Disability Access Service Card, I said that it was receiving, at best, mixed reviews. Well, the chickens have come home to roost on that. Sixteen families of children and youth with developmental disabilities (including autistic children) are now suing Disney on the grounds that the new Disability Access Service Card regulations aren’t…

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Thoughts About Disability Awareness Days

Thoughts About Disability Awareness Days

disability awareness daysSo, a disability awareness day came and went this week: World Autism Awareness Day, on April 2.  My Facebook feed was lit up with pictures of city landmarks bathed in blue light, and autism-themed memes, and pictures of friends’ autistic loved ones.

I didn’t write anything this year, or post anything on the Facebook page, or even tweet anything, as I have in past years. The first year I had this…

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apsies:

Things that blew your mind when you were a kid.

apsies:

Things that blew your mind when you were a kid.

Anonymous asked: what's extreme is people like you not realizing that sometimes diversity can go too far. When characters are made black or disabled or gay for no reason it hurts the story and it hurts the cause of the people who are supposedly being represented.

danialexis:

summercomfort:

blue-author:

I like how you sent me an ask claiming that no one says a thing except people rhetorically making fun of the position that no one actually holds, and then you send me an ask clarifying that you hold exactly the same position.

I’m kind tempted to just not address anything else you said and just marvel in the perfection of that.

What’s the reason for making a character white? What’s the reason for making a character straight? What’s the reason for making a character abled or neurotypical or cis?

When you assume that making a character Other relative to yourself weakens the narrative, you’re revealing a terrible thing about yourself: that you can’t imagine that those people have backstories and inner lives the way that you do.

Every single person in a fictional narrative is ultimately there because a writer decided they needed to be there, but when the person looks like you and matches your expectations, you accept that this person who was made up for the plot had a life full of events that led them to the point where they’re appearing on the screen or page.

But when your expectations aren’t met, you start saying it’s forced. You can’t accept that events led them here because you don’t grant them the kind of life that you know you have. Your empathy does not extend to them. 

Look at how many white people think they can relate to a little girl in an industrial orphanage who falls in with a capitalist robber baron during the Great Depression more than they can relate to a little girl in the foster system in modern New York who falls in with a career politician, all because of a difference of race. The original Annie’s situation and world were only slightly less alien to us than the Victorian period, but making her white somehow makes her relatable in a way that a little girl who clearly exists in our world isn’t.

The fact is, empathy is linked to imagination and we can (and do!) relate to people who are literally alien beings in literally alien worlds. The choice not to relate to Quvenzhané Wallis as Annie—or a Black or gay or female or trans video game character—is a choice to shut off both imagination and empathy. 

The failing is not with the narrative, it’s with you.

Love the 4th parag, especially

When you assume that making a character Other relative to yourself weakens the narrative, you’re revealing a terrible thing about yourself: that you can’t imagine that those people have backstories and inner lives the way that you do.”

Reblogging with emphasis because that fourth paragraph is utterly perfect.

Yes. Amazing.

2 guys playing “Thunderstruck” on their cellos just ROCK it! Why am I just hearing about 2CELLOS now??

sam-clay:

sam-clay:

Malala Yousafzai, in a 2011 interview with CNN, discussing her activism on behalf of girls seeking education in Pakistan.

I’m bringing this back because this morning it was announced that Malala Yousafzai has been officially nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize.

Congratulations, princess.

Saw her interviewed on “The Daily Show” last year…it was the first time I’ve ever seen Jon Stewart speechless. She’s a powerhouse.

(via bright-warrior)

Vaccination Safety and Autism: An Irritating Debate

Vaccination Safety and Autism: An Irritating Debate

vaccination safetyMeasles outbreaks in both Canada and the United States are bringing the debate about vaccination safety and autism out in force again. And, as I often do when I see a Facebook debate among my friends on vaccination safety and the decision not to vaccinate children, particularly when it involves fears about autism, I jumped right into the one that I came across the other night.

The vaccination…

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