Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Watch the Whole Speech

Obama made a speech this morning on the wider issues raised by his association with Rev. Wright. If you have the time, I urge you to watch, listen and/or read the entire speech. I am sure various news outlets of every political stripe will feature soundbytes of portions of the speech, but to really appreciate what he is saying, you need to experience the whole.

You can find it here: http://my.barackobama.com/hisownwords.

Someone told me that the pundits are already saying that the speech was "too nuanced" for the average voter to appreciate. I am glad he didn't dumb it down, personally. I think one of his attractions is that he is giving voters the benefit of the doubt about being able to grasp the subtleties of the issues.

I Can Relate

One thing that struck me, while I was listening to his speech is that as a "disability rights advocate" I have experienced hearing a so-called ally say things I vehemently disagreed with, or that merely made me uncomfortable. I call it the "don't be on my side" phenomenon. But, unless someone says something that I simply cannot allow to stand, I may remain silent. We need solidarity, or at least the appearance of solidarity in the face of all of the various forces that would weaken our perpetual struggle to equality.

The very title of this blog, "Crip Chronicles" offends some people -- for using the word "crip". But, as a young disabled person, particularly when I first started being integrated in high school, the words "crip" and "angry crip" was used by my older, disabled classmates to refer to US, who were struggling for equality.

I try to be politic about where and when I use the term. But, I know when I have found a brother or sister in the "disability rights movement" when they are comfortable with the use of "crip". And I also know that you can hear some pretty angry and hostile talk when a bunch of angry crips get together and talk about the wrongs done to them by TABs [temporarily able-bodied], the system and the man.

1 comment:

Will H. said...

I hope you can join our community "Support People with Disabilities" on Change.org.

http://www.change.org/changes/view/2154

Thanks,
Will H.