And we’ve been doing it since the beginning of time. In almost every single piece of our world’s history, people with disabilities are the outcasts, the poor, the sick, and the unloved. The people that were not equal.
But, that’s only the ones that made it in the history books. We are so segregated, that the history of our minority group often doesn’t make it into books. Now think about that. History, often doesn’t include an entire group of people. Now how does that make you feel?
Children with disabilities in years past didn’t receive educations. They were put into asylums to waste away because there wasn’t much a family could do for them. But what about children in this day and age? Though they might be lucky enough to attend the same schools, they aren’t all given a chance to be in the same classrooms as their peers. Yes, they may learn differently. Yes they may need more time. And yes, they might need assistance with writing, speaking and listening. But who put them in the separate classrooms? Who told them they needed to receive a different education than their peers. It certainly was not them, because they are just children.
No one with a disability wakes up and says, “I’m okay with the fact that I am treated differently.”
You know, when I was a little girl, I used to think that this life was all just a vivid dream. That I would one day wake up and have my arm and leg. I was a child, having no real concept of independence in this world, and I was already feeling the pressure of everyone else to be just like them.
But as I grew up, I became okay with this pressure. I even remember asking my friend as we were playing in my family’s yard, to play a game where I was the normal one and that she, and the rest of the world, were the “deformed” minority.
She said no. She didn’t want to play that game. And who can blame her. Who wants to willing switch over to a world where society and plain damn buildings, won’t let you in.
But that’s the beauty of disability. We are the only minority group that doesn’t discriminate against age or race. And we are the only one that allows you to join at any point in your life. We are the largest minority group.
And we are an accepting group. We are a non-discriminating group. Because, who do we have to discriminate against?
If we were to treat everyone in the world in the same sort of ways that they treat us, as separate. We would slide backwards. We would lose access to our world because the people behind creating the access would feel that we were no longer wanted to be a part of it because we were now treating them differently.
If you think back, at the beginning of this conversation, I stated that “we” created a world that isn’t equal. Because I identify as a functioning member of society. And now I’m ending this thought, with another “we”. We are just a group of people that want access to the world. I’ll let you decide which “we” that is.