When “Confined” to a Wheelchair Is the Lesser Evil

Wheelchair user Ruth Harrigan writes about attitudes that wheelchair users encounter and finishes with a pointed thought:

“Of course I could simply stare at asses (or assholes) all day since they are at my height. But that’s no way to go through life. There’s so much more to people who stand up than their asses. And the same is true when you don’t see the person in a wheelchair. Or the blind person with a guide dog or using a cane. If all you see is the disability, you’ve missed the entire point.

“Because people with disabilities are, after all , just people. And when people confine their views to just seeing the wheelchair, they’re the ones who are confined to a wheelchair, not us.”

The human diversity and resolution are astounding, and yet some people still choose to bury their heads in a metaphorical paleolithic morass. We have practiced division of labor for thousands of years. The “worth” of people no longer depends on how many bison they are able to clobber, or how many invaders they are able to slay with one swing of a sword, or how much they are able to bench press. We now have technology that allows (relatively) effortless movement to people who otherwise would have been housebound. Time for attitudes to catch up.

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