The definition of Ableism from disabled Feminist:
Ableism is a form of discrimination or prejudice against individuals with physical, mental, or developmental disabilities that is characterized by the belief that these individuals need to be fixed or cannot function as full members of society (Castañeda & Peters, 2000). As a result of these assumptions, individuals with disabilities are commonly viewed as being abnormal rather than as members of a distinct minority community (Olkin & Pledger, 2003; Reid & Knight, 2006). Because disability status has been viewed as a defect rather than a dimension of difference, disability has not been widely recognized as a multicultural concern by the general public as well as by counselor educators and practitioners.
Yet, being Autistic I am better than any one of those Ultrasound technologists who think they are the best because they are Neurotypical. I am Autistic and I am proud of being Autistic. I may have my faults, but from what I know Neurotypicals have many faults. I can see details other Ultrasound techs can’t see at all because I am also an Artist!
Ableism continued at the Ultrasound School I first started in and finished. Then went to my externships. Then to my first job which wound up being part time. Then wound up being a difficult path to find another job which is part time. Any cardiologist or doctor for that matter should know better than to discriminate against an Autistic person like myself or any person with a disability. I should hope not all doctors are like this, but that is what I experienced. Doctors are always with people with disabilities in their practice who are their patients. Autistics are human too.
Now is the time I am wanting to help and teach other Autistic people to not suffer from the ableism in this world that I have suffered all my life. This is the reason why I want to teach Autistic children and teenagers and mentoring them to be able to have a great Adult life later in their lives.
And so, I have devised up a plan to stop Ableism in it’s tracks before people like me set it in their brains causing them to internalize it in their minds. It’s just not a healthy talking point toward an Autistic or any other disability.
I have come up with a list of different methods to stop Ableist viewpoints and thinking:
Here is the list devised to stop ableism:
1) Read, Watch, or Listen to what you feel may be Ableist carefully. (if you need help, ask someone who knows)
2) Report it in your mind as labeled as Ableist
3) Tell the person who reported Ableism even if it’s the news about how Ableism causes more harm to a person with a disability because it causes negative reaction with a person with a disability (read Lydia Brown, Autistic adult blog posts).
4) Know that any one you see is a Human being and talk to them as if they are Human not anything less.
Stopping this thinking will take time because it’s implanted in all of our brains already. Ableism is a virus that attacks all of us. I have friends who are also affected by internalized Ableism. Why bother to bring a person down by using the “virus” we call Ableism?
How do we stop it?
1) Think before you say something about or to a person with a disability
2) Never accept Eugenics ever!! We didn’t accept it during World War II when Hitler thought of that to eradicate the Jewish people, so why are we accepting to eradicate the Autistic people like me.
3) We need to start advocating for Autistic people who are suffering from internalized Ableism. We need to keep in mind that a lot of people without a disability is thinking the wrong way about my Autistic friends and I.
4) Change each of your words in your speech by telling an Autistic or any person with a disability that they are capable of doing what they put their minds to.
5) Don’t use words like the R-word, but especially don’t use the words intellectual disability or ID. I think society needs to rethink carefully what words they currently use toward disability.
Disability is in all of our nature. There is no one who is not subjected to disability at some point in their lives. Being human means we are not perfect. However being human we have passion to do whatever we feel we want to do with our lives.
That being said: I am a Human Rights Activist, Animal Rights Activist, Artist, Writer, Poet, Autistic man who will not stop ever doing what I am doing. I will fight to the end always and forever. People need to stop criticizing, stop trying to eradicate, and stop trying to judge disability. I will always continue to fight for my people and help by mentoring them because like what I heard on Saturday Night Live years ago, I’m Good enough, I’m Smart enough, and God darn it, People like me!!!
Hope you all enjoyed your Holidays and continue to enjoy the holiday season!!