Disability 101: Voices from Facebook | SummitDaily.com

Disability 101: Voices from Facebook

Sandy Lahmann
special to the daily

Have you ever noticed that when a person with a disability gets angry about something, perhaps they get angry about discrimination or they get angry about how they are treated, there is always someone out there who jumps all over their case and says they are just “bitter” or they have a chip on their shoulder?

Oh, really? Today we are going to go beyond one voice. We are going to 2,191 voices, as of the time I am writing this. Call me bitter or whatever. Let’s see what you would call these 2,191 people with disabilities.

There is a Facebook group entitled

“Stupid quotes people have said to us disabled people.” The group was started

in June of 2009 and there are now 2,191 fans as I write this, but every day more fans join. It’s

growing quickly.

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The entire group

is just a collection of comments people have made to people with disabilities that are offensive or just plain

stupid. It expands beyond comments to

share some of the things people have done that are offensive or stupid. I’ve pulled a

few of the entries to share with you.

Tammy reports,”The other day I was out at this cafe, and the woman dining next to me was staring at me. I pulled my book out and all of a sudden she blurts out ‘YOU CAN READ?!?!, WOW! I thought disabled people couldn’t do anything!'”

Wayne shares this stupid comment that a nurse said to him, “You have a job?!”

Amanda tells this story: “One time I was eating dinner at a sushi restaurant in an airport, and a lady sits close to my brothers and I. After a while she asks, ‘Is this chair yours?’ (referring to my wheelchair). Then she asks, ‘How do you live?’ The only way I could reply is; ‘I just do.'”

Robin has this to say: “Why do some people have a tendency to pat someone on the head who uses a wheelchair?? I have gotten that a lot in the past and I feel like barking at them or biting them like a dog would!!”

Meg questions, “What I want to know is when people say ‘If I got MS I’d kill myself,’ is that meant to be admiration (for my superior moral courage) or advice?”

Kathy comments on the same theme, “The other day I was at work in the

break room. This guy came down and

sat next to me and talked to me a little bit. Then he started talking to another lady

in the break room. Then he says … ‘If I

ever end up in a wheelchair, just put me out of my misery. I would rather be dead than live my life in a wheelchair.’ WOW. What do you say to that? He turns to

me and says ‘Oh, no offense.'”

Tammy dislikes this comment, “‘You’re so brave.’ Yeah? Well, I have to be!!!”

Chris remarks, “I love when people say, ‘Well, you look normal.’ Really, can you define what normal looks like, please? Does anyone know for sure what normal is supposed to look like?”

Let’s close with this one from Chris: “I was working in a store and some lady stopped me to ask me a question. She said to me, “Excuse me, sir, do you have any respect for your employer?’ I said, “Why do you ask that?’ She said, “Why did you come to work drunk?’ My response was, “Ma’am, I have cerebral palsy. I was born with it. You, however, are ignorant.'”