Monthly Archives: June 2010

It’s all just a little crazy

If you felt that life has been a little difficult lately because of your disability it is about to get a lot worse. Just last week one of the primaries was won by a man who outwardly opposes the ADA. You would think someone who has said very clearly the government’s job is not to help people with disabilities could never have gotten a chance at winning an office. However, people in the South disagree.

“Oh no” he will say “I’m not opposed to people with disabilities getting jobs but if they can’t climb the stairs they should work on the ground floor.” Heaven forbid him think about the type of accommodation I need to do my job. Actually, he might like that. After all I then wouldn’t have a computer with a screen reader and Braille display and dictation software to write this blog. No I might have the computer but I would sit in a chair and the computer would be unused. In fact my job wouldn’t actually exist if it wasn’t for the fact that the federal government got involved and said students need to be accommodated. Let alone employees and anyone else with a disability. You might say The ADA hasn’t done any good? YES! Many people say that without the ADA people in disabilities would still be able to do everything they can with it. However, I’m sure it would not be at the level they can today.

I remember going to school 20 years and more ago how much harder it was just to get access to a textbook. I would often count on classmates to read the tape. Today in the room next door to mine 450 textbooks or more get converted to one of many different file formats for each students reading needs. This is not unusual. This is happening in all schools around the country as a matter of course. Maybe students would’ve had access to textbooks without the ADA but with the ADA these textbooks can be accessible.

My whole life I considered myself a Canadian liberal. When I moved to the US I had to change my stance a little. Now I call myself a socialist but still very much a liberal. There’s nothing wrong with the government getting involved with situations that can just be when someone’s prejudice or someone’s budget could limit anyone from receiving services for access to the same things that others can Use. When it comes to healthcare why not get the government involved. What’s wrong with a person sick going to the hospital and receiving the services they need. If you’re the kind of person that’s very susceptible to flu why should you have to wait in line paying and paying again for flu shots? Why shouldn’t that is provided as part of standard health care benefits. If Donald Trump and Bill Gates get a flu shot why shouldn’t any child in your local slum or the mother of the child or the father or the teacher or the classmates of that child also get a flu shot. Sometimes my idealistic dreams say that if we all got the healthcare we needed the diseases that we fight today might disappear. A little hygiene and a lot of care and prevention can go an awful long way.

Politicians that tell you the government needs to stay out of people’s day-to-day lives in disabilities and health care no nothing. They have never had to suffer the indignities of crawling up a flight of stairs to go to a job interview or watch a child suffering from the disease that you can’t afford the medicine for. I say if the government doesn’t get involved who will ?why not after all we do pay taxes and the last time I checked I was opposed to weapons of war but I paid for those two.