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Those issues I believe were eventually worked out. But the whole thing reminds me of what the anonymous webmaster of www.gettingthetruthout.org said about the people who said there was no hope for her vs the people who said she could be cured of autism:
"They both declared an identical view of the world in which only people with certain innate traits were deserving of freedom.

It seems pretty ironic that at the heart of "new urbanism" lies the issue of accessibility within a community and creating a communnity that embraces the various facets of our lives, and yet these developments largely have not delt with the accessibility of handicapped people within the community.

Thank you for the article regarding Arthur Miller's child w/Down Syndrome (Arthur and Daniel, by Michael Bailey)
. As a proud parent of a child w/DS & as a classic literature fan, I was greatly saddened to learn this. I have since embarked on an Arthur Miller schmearing spree :)

RE: Adult Protective Services vs. Jerry Chenoweth, by Laura Hershey: I was the victim of circumstances, in which I was held like a common criminal, that was very DANGEROUS TO SELF AND ALL OF SECIOETY...????WHY OH WHY? AGAIN I WAS NOT GUILTY AT ALL OF ANYTHING SO JUST LAY OFF I'm JUST FINE. Sincerely Jerry Che

Thank you for putting this online! I am disabled from when a vehicle lost control and significantly injured me. I filed an ADA lawsuit and have been harrasseed, humiliated, run out of town, and assaulted. Not only that, but the person who was completely non-compliant trumped up bogus claims to the county permit department and send the troops in causing me horrible distress and legal fees to defend property which is grandfathered in in use of all structures. I am SHOCKED at how I am treated as a disabled adult and how, even if you ask, no one wants to make accomodation for you irregardless of "notices" to businesses. It is painful enough to be disabled, but to be humiliated as well is unbearable! Thanks you again for your article on here. If you want to contact me I can provide you with greater detail. I filed the ADA lawsuit, but was probably one of the few who did not go after money. I just wanted to be treated with respect, instead I have been tarred and feathered.

I amn ot pleased with the authors referring to televised fund raising activities as hurting thjose with disabilities. I am assuming that the author does not have any major disabiilty or I doubt she would be so vocal in her thoughts. Espectially those of use who have been helped by Mr. Jerry Lewis. How dare she give her obviously uneducated ideas in this manner. Shame on her.

At the end of Cal's piece is "She says that at times she's been judged to be too low-functioning to consent to or refuse medical treatment, benefit from education, work in a sheltered workshop or register to vote."

I would bet that she's also been judged to be too high-functioning to speak for DRM!


Some US President in our history once said, "Just Follow the Money". Maybe a US Attorney General said it.
I am very interested in actuall figures of where the MSDA telethon monies are being spent. Your site does not address those monetary specifics. I first ran across this financial issue when I first read an article in the news papers from the Jerry's Orphans organization. This was about 10-15 years ago. Like, all the celebrities that comes on the telethon receive wages for doing it. And Caesar's Palace charges a huge sum of monies for rent due them for hosting the telethon. Please respond to my comments.
Roger D Braasch

In reference to the comment by Kell regarding Murderball... This movie is not for the faint of heart - you have to understand that this is a documentary. It also highlights the fact that adjusting to life with a disability is an ugly process. Having played athletics, I know this movie was a true picture of what life was like (and we were always up against the idea that people with disabilities should be quiet and compliant and of course we rebelled against this). Despite all the lack of PC (these are real people sharing real feelings), these were people in my life that I could be real with, be disabled with, and be loved without judgement. (I played against Joe a couple times) This movie may not be right for you, but it is important and has changed many people's views of who people with disabilities are.

Any comments from the community about "Emmanual's Gift", the movie?

I am writing about the disabled person having to sit in a section where he can't see Dr. Phil (My Dr. Phil Nightmare: 'Special' segregation at the Dr. Phil Show). I myself am disabled and I surely wouldn't want to go to any of his shows, even as much as I like Dr. Phil. Does Dr. Phil know about this because I can't believe he would let this happen, especially as rude as the woman was to Mr. Shakeel. That is my opinion and whether Dr. Phil knows about it or agrees with it, I will not change my mind.

re: the article about inspiration...and people with differences:
Very well written. As an autistic person I can appreciate the content on a personal level. I also observe people treating those with physical/mental differences with much less respect than they deserve. I was highly impressed with your writing.
thanks for sharing.

About "Murderball"...
I've avoided seeing the movie because of rumors that "rauch culture" shows up predominantly, i.e. as blatant misogyny and obscenity. (One example was calling men "bitch" or other misogynist names as insults, along with even worse woman-hatred.) I've also heard (from fewer sources) that hate-speech against fat people and full quads also shows up in the film. If all this is true (and I'd love for someone to give me more details), how can it possibly be a worthwhile movie? Fighting one set of hatreds and bigotries doesn't give someone the right to perpetuate those hatreds against someone else.

How do I protest?

For several months (really!) I have looked for rules to protest by. I want to protest a local McDonalds that provides access to its "restaurant" in a path from the two parking spaces, across two lanes of traffic, thru the drive-thru lane (directly in front of vehicles at the pick-up window) and up a ramp to a manually- pulled-open door. I have talked to the owners but to no avail. I would like to ride my scooter in the route while holding a sign to point out the problem.

My concern is with getting arrested. Where can a person protest? On public streets, on public sidewalks, on private property? Or does this vary by state? I live in Missouri. Recently a petition signer was arrested for asking for signatures in front of the Post Office on their sidewalk. This town doesn't like to have the status quo questioned.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Re: The way things are, by Cal Montgomery, 9.8.2005. Yes it is a while since the article was 'posted' but my google search was only needed today...and I was looking for some exploration of Foucault and disability...and I agree with Cal, it can be tortuous reading and perhaps is best left for those on a higher language-cognitive level to explain to those of use who are best able to use the vernacular in a more constructive way in order to explain what happens in the world...I keep looking for easy ways to explain 'difference' to people in social settings and as Foucault had some differences that troubled him and he seemed a smart fellow, I occasionally wonder how he would explain disability...and intellectual disability in particular...not sure if he was ever that specific...I get lost in the translation from french to english and even when trying his french I get totally confused....so thanks Cal for letting me know that I am not alone in wanting what is intelligent writing reframed into words that many more of us can understand, and thus appreciate what the french fellow had to say.cheers, david b in oz.

I read your article titled "The Wrong Message--Still." Strong feelings seemed to just lift off the pages. However, there is a book titled BLACK LIKE ME where a white man did paint himself black to experience that particular life. Also,the most excellent book to add to the reading list is titled UNARMED BUT DANGEROUS by Tawana Williams. Instead of feeling sorry for herself or what other people portrayed of her, she made a statement loud and clear. The reading is excellent, but the title said it all.

Re: My Dr. Phil Nightmare
'Special' segregation at the Dr. Phil Show

Oh. Man. I'm so saddened to read a story like this. How could a disabled person be discriminated like this, forced to sit in seats away from the cameras?

There are 52 million disabled Americans. 12 million have my disability, epilepsy. According to recent tests from a doctor at the University of London Cognitive Research Center, I'm the only one (he knows of) on earth who has zero visual memory. I can't remember what people or objects look like. I write about this a lot on my website, livingthelifeofholly.com.

When I go to a concert, I'm placed in the disabled seating area, so flashing lights won't send me into seizure.

But. This poor man and his friends, being discriminated in such a barbaric way?

Oh. This worries me.

I've lost jobs due to my disability. I haven't been hired because of my disability. And. I've spend a lot of time worrying about whether my newest job would have a problem with my being disabled, even though I no longer have seizures, people fear the worst.

Knowing that a television show seats people by disability is terribly frightening.



Re: Segregation and Discrimination among the Boy Scouts:

The article written by Mr. Peace provided me with another example of discrimination in the Boy Scouts of America. Had I not seen this piece, I would have believed that I may have been the only participating adult, his son being a member of the scouts, who was treated shabbily by Scout personnel.

My son was also very intrigued with joining the Scouts at the Tiger Cub level late last year. He has come to enjoy it immensly, and I supported his efforts wholeheartedly, having been a Scout myself many years ago. I came to appreciate the regimentation, moral values, comradeship, inclusiveness, mentoring . . . the list goes on. But, now I believe that, from my perspective at least, those ideals either have been replaced or never actually existed in the first place.

I am a law enforcement professional and had been for over 25 years, when I suffered a dibilitating vehicle accident which rendered me incapable of bending my right knee. This resultant incapacity has forced me to occasionally use a cane; I am precluded from walking long distances; I am unable to climb or descend stairs without taking a considerable amount of time; I requested and was granted handicapped status by the State of Illinois based on the official reports of my physicians. There are other physical restrictions resulting from my condition, but I won't list them here.

Yet, I am still able to think clearly and rationally about who I am, what my limitations are (and are not), where I can go with the least amount of effort or fewest physical barriers, and what activities I can reasonably participate in with my 7 year old son. For the most part, due to established national laws, manditory changes to the statutes, and a greater national awareness of the issues surrounding people with disabilities, those activities that my son and I share are not incumbered.

Therefore, the last place I expected to face discrimination of any kind, let alone handicapped or racial, was at the hands of the Boy Scouts of America.

The incident, which occurred approximately 2 weeks ago, involved a Boy Scout sanctioned day-long trip to a Kendall county Illinois, a Boy Scout Campground facility known as Hoover Outdoor Educational. Our Cub Master had touted the site for quite a while since it is regularly used by area Scouts, and explained that the annual weekend or 3 day camp would be held at that location. Initially I was reluctant to sign my son up for the camp, fearing that I might slow him down because of my disability, and knowing full well that he was not old enough nor would he be allowed to attend without his parent. I expressed my concerns to the Cub Master, who in response contacted the Chicagoland Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, and immediately began to obtain information or make arrangements for me to attend. He contacted personnel at Hoover, explained to them the nature of my disability, and was able to secure promises of support to ensure my attendance would not be problematic. He specifically showed me the layout of the site on a map and in photos, where the lodging, mess hall, showers and other facilities at Hoover were located.

I decided, based on the information provided by the Cub Master, that it would be prudent for me to personally examine the site before commiting to attendance at the three day camp. To this end, we decided to go on the one day trip that was planned, enjoy the festivities of that event and I would have an opportunity to gauge the situation and make a decision.

The Troop used several buses to transport over 50 Scouts from our area to the Hoover facility. I had to drive because, due to the nature of my injury, sitting on a crowded school bus for over 60 miles one way would have been very difficult. I explained my decision to drive to the Cub Master, who in turn relayed my intentions to a Scout Master affiliated with the Chicagoland Council. This Scout Master was apparently in charge of the trip and was responsible for the welfare of the Scouts in his charge both on the buses and at the Hoover site.

Once we arrived at Hoover (I remained with a caravan following the bus with other parents who drove), I parked my personal vehicle along with the others. I noticed that there were no handicapped parking spaces or facilities out side of the grounds gate. All arrivals, with the exception of certain Scout personnel, were required to park their vehicles, buses included, exit the vehicles and walk approximately one hundred and fifty yards to the "Trading Post" or main building. There is a railroad track that runs across the "front" of the property, so a tunnel under the tracks was used by most of the attendees to reach the building. The walk by way of the tunnel added an additional 150 yards to the walk.

Apparently realizing my predicament, the Scout Master approached me and initially suggested that I should ride in his vehicle onto the main property, at which point he would drop me off and pick me up at the end of the day and deposit me at my car.

First of all, the suggestion is offensive and insensitive, that a grown man who is only unable to walk far and fast, must be surrender his personal means of transportatoin, to be carted around by another grown man, losing his freedom of movement, his dignity and deminishing his self esteem in front of others, not to mention his own son. What was wrong with letting me drive my own vehicle to an area near the main building and parking it in a handicapped zone (if one were available)?

Second, his vehicle, a compact, would not be physically large enough to hold or transport a grown adult who is unable to bend his leg. I would essentially have to lay prone either across the back seat or place my head on the rear seat and prop my legs across the front passenger seat. Neither feasible nor dignified.

When the Scout Master realized his solution would not work, he told me to get into my vehicle and follow his vehicle onto the property to a parking location near the main building. He assured me that it was permissible, even though regular vehicular traffic was forbidden. I followed his instructions, maintaining a distance of only a few yards between his vehicle and mine.

As we drove close to the building we reached a fork in the road, one leading to the side of the building, the other going in a different direction. He continued to drive forward, presumably to the parking area, but I was forced to stop and wait while pedestrians, Scouts, their parents and Scout Leadership personnel crossed the road from the main building to the shower area on the opposite side of the road.

Once the pedestrian traffic stopped I proceeded to drive along the same road as the Scout Master had driven moments before. As I did I observed a truck traveling in the opposite direction, and given the limited width of the road, effectively prevented me from proceeding further. I observed that the driver of the vehicle was shouting something at me, although I could not hear what he was saying. What I did notice, however, was the look of surprise and concern written on the faces of those standing near his truck who were able to hear what he was saying. I realized that he was trying to drive past the area where I had stopped, so I put my vehicle in reverse and backed up onto the fork in the road to allow him to pass. Once his truck was abreast of my vehicle he continued to mouth words or shout in my direction. I rolled down my window to hear what he was saying. Although I could not hear everything, I did understand him to ask me what I was doing, where was I going and who did I think I was. He continued to rant as I told him that I was given permission by Scout personnel, specifically a Scout Master who instructed me to follow him onto the property. The driver of the truck responded that "Scout Masters don't run nothin'. They got nothin' to say about what goes on here."

Although I could not relate what obscenties he was shouting, I do know that his rhetoric was unacceptable, inflammatory and inapproriate. Realizing that responding to him in kind would further inflame the situation, especially after he began to demand that I "answer" him as to why I was there, I felt continuing in this vein in full view and earshot of both Scouts and other adults was not the way to proceed.

I removed my vehicle from the property by driving back to the original parking area, and walked with considerable difficulty, from the parking area back to the main building. This took more than 30 minutes.

When I arrived, I found the aforementioned Scout Master standing nearby planning the days events. I discreetly pulled him to the side out of earshot of anyone else, demanded to know why he would instruct me to drive onto the property when it was not allowed, why there were no handicapped parking facilities available for use by partons or Scouts who may be disabled, and why I had to be treated in that manner by another adult. Although I really believed that some of the anger expressed by the truck driver was racial in nature (he was Caucasian, I am Black), my focus and concern was more about the handicapped issue as opposed to the potential racial component.

The Scout Master appeared to be taken aback, but after I provided him with a description of the truck driver and detail as to the nature of the incident, he immediately determined the offending subject was "F", an employee of the Boy Scouts who is charged with maintaining the Hoover site and grounds. The Scout Master tried to suggest that there was a "misunderstanding" and that "F" might have been having a bad day. This whole approach on his part was unacceptable. The Scout Master went on to say that he was going to "talk" with "F" and try to determine what happened, suggesting that my account may have been somehow inaccurate or biased. The Scout Master was unable to explain why provisions are not available for handicapped persons, whether Scouts, their parents or others present who may have disabilities.

The Scout Master was also loath to explain why other persons, none that appeared to be Scout personnel or support staff, we allowed to drive their vehicles, cars, campers, trucks and trailers up and down the gravel road that disects the property from one end to the other, and were not questioned or stopped. He was unable to address the reason as to why, after I had been assured that provisions would be made for me as a disabled person, why those promises were not fulfilled. The Scout leadership either misled the Cub Master with whom I had spoken or disregarded his requests because they had no intention of aiding a handicapped person on their grounds.

After several hours the Scout Master returned to inform me that he had spoken with "F" who provided him with a different account of what occured (big surprise). He went on to say that "F" refused to entertain any idea of providing an apology and insisted that his position, his approach to me and what he said was acceptable.

Since the central issue here is discrimination against handicapped or disabled persons by the Boy Scouts of America, even though it is just as distasteful, racial discrimination and bigotry issues regarding the Scouts is something that I choose not address at this time.

Either way, the Scouts have always promoted diversity and inclusion, touting themselves as being wholesome and all American. What a joke! They, perhaps, need to clean their own house before they propose to hold themselves up as the standard for teaching morality, inclusiveness, sensitivity and understanding to their young and impressionable charges.

The bottom line is: Does one approach this through civil litigation or is the solution in trying to work with the organization? Since I sent the Chicagoland Council of the Boy Scouts of American a written account of what occurred, I have yet to receive a response.

Perhaps their primary concern is defending their practices in court rather than trying to deal with these problems directly with those they discriminate against.

Ed Hooper's predictable MURDERBALL review

MURDERBALL is actually all about the idea that disabled men are still "men"--without deconstructing the damaging and corrupt patriarchal gender role of "man" in the first place. As a result, nothing is challenged and nothing really changes. Men are still men; women are still women, and all is right with the world. (((YAWN))) That is conservative business-as-usual, not radical in the least. And it certainly does NOT benefit those of us who have been harmed by gender roles, particularly people with disabilities.

Ed Hooper finds it very important to be a "man" (status quo definition), so applauds the movie for telling him he IS one.

Please read an alternative view:


Liberals and disability rights: Why don't they 'get it'?

Sometimes I feel like giving up, to be honest. I’ve been an “advocate” off and on for years, and lately I’ve felt that trying to break down barriers—both physical and social—may be almost impossible. I’ve had a web site (http://accesswilliamsport.org) on the internet now for over a year, and people are staying away in droves. I’ve gotten some feedback from readers, positive and negative, but nobody seems to want to lift a finger to make positive changes. Frankly, it appears that people want society to go on treating those of us who are mislabeled as “handicapped” the same way it’s always treated us. It’s no accident that rampant discrimination still exists; it’s by design and is intimately intertwined in all our institutions including government, business, and religion.

But I won’t give up. What have I got to lose? Even on my paltry income I can afford $6.95 a month to keep my web site going. I’ll continue until things either change for the better, or they plant me in the ground. I've seen a lot of crap in my life, but it would all be worth it if I might some day see it all remedied. For now, I can only ask people who give a damn to do something to make life better for us all and in so doing, prove that they respect their own lives as well as others. There are no rights as long as rights are denied to some, and none of us are safe in a society that disrespects basic human rights. We’re all potential victims of “the system.” Let’s change that system.

Re: The Scribes Who Mistook the Crips for The Right:

For John Smith, who was asking about the quote, which I believe is "Pity has always been a kissing cousin of disgust": I believe I read that quote in a print version of The Disability Rag, and I believe it was in an article reflecting on the phenomenon of the freakshow. I can't find it in the online archives, but I'd like to, because I totally lifted it and collaged it into a poem.

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