Monday, November 14, 2011

not knowing / not bothering

i don't actually have the power personally/ systemically/ institutionally to "force" or "make" you post accessibilitIES information for your events -- & if it must be forced, have folks learned anything?). 
However, if you consider yourself IN ANY WAY WHATSOEVER "allied" to me as a disabled person, you will do the right thing & post it. If you don't know what to post, ask me or someone else. There's nothing wrong with NOT KNOWING. You are not alone in not knowing, believe me! There are many things i don't know about accessibilitIES too. It's a learning process, but you have to be willing to not know to move forward. No shame, nothing wrong with not knowing!
There is, however, something wrong with NOT BOTHERING. When you have the opportunity but don't bother, you are sending a very clear message to me that: 
- you don't care about my/our inclusion and participation, 
- you don't care about the fact that i/we get shut out of things every single day, 
- you don't care that our friendship or other kind of relationship doesn't actually get to include all of me/us, and that you would rather not think about that. You have devalued me/us based on ableism, likely without even realizing it.
i know it maybe seems like a lot, but this is what is being transmitted in your "not bothering". i'd like to think you'd never say such things to my face, so why are you willing to say them in other ways? 
Ask yourself, honestly, why you don't/won't prioritize this, us, me. No brownie points, but you --yes you-- will be doing me, my disabled friends & non-disabled allies, our communities, & ultimately our friendship a major favour.
[And also, like i've said elsewhere, gimps can (and often do!) do this aaaaaall day long. We aint goin' anywhere (especially since folks seem to insist on using non-accessible spaces!). So, y'know, we're meeting up with each other, drawing up plans, making change happen. You can come along for the ride and help steer every now and then, or you can get sick in the backseat. Your choice. Either way, change is happening, friend!]
 <3

5 comments:

billie rain said...

love this article! thanks so much. i'm going to pass this along.
<3!!

billie rain said...

love this article! thanks so much. i'm going to pass this along.
<3!!

emmarosenthal said...

i've had similar discussions in los angeles. we've put a call out to the left, offered our own space, we created despite our very limited personal funds, provided ample resources, and in the end, an event with us, just isn't cool. i mean, this IS los angeles, hollywood, movie stars, why should social justice folk be any different than the larger society with its superficial attitudes toward body normativity?

some links you might find parallel, interesting, and resourceful.

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2010/06/05/i-cant-be-part-of-a-movement-if-i-cant-get-my-wheel-in-the-door/

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.files.wordpress.com/2010/09/disability-affirmative-event.pdf

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/2009/09/30/guide-to-accessible-event-planning/

https://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=361031147521

http://inbedwithfridakahlo.wordpress.com/resources-for-accessibility-links-and-downloads/

a few groups have used these suggestions and resources, but for the most part, there's not even the remotest effort at dis-inclusion.

let me know how we can support each other. i really love your work.

romham a bear said...

emmarosenthal, thanks for that, and the solidarity! im not able to read the posts in those links unfortunately, the text is too close in colour to the background (any chance of darkening that text up?), til then when ive got a sec i'll cut n paste it into a doc to read.
:)

Anonymous said...

Sorry i have not commented till now, i have been reading your blog for a although now though. It has turn into part of my morning routine.