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Disabilities - Essay Example

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There are many barriers which a differently abled person is faced with everyday of his/her life. Some are physical barriers, which include lack of access to places, transport and support services and medical care. Then there are financial barriers like lower wage jobs and no health insurance…
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Download file to see previous pages It simply means we are calling ourselves " abled". The Smith College Office of Student Affairs issued a pamphlet that defines "ableism" as "oppression of the differently abled, by the temporarily abled." The term "differently abled" was "created to underline the concept that differently abled individuals are just that, not less or inferior in any way..." "Ageism," according to the pamphlet, is "[o] oppression of the young and old, by young adults and the middle-aged, in the belief that others are 'incapable' or unable to take care of themselves." Disability should be perceived as an aspect of human diversity and not as an "abnormality". Terms like" differently abled" not only aim at being politically correct but also serve to remove physical and attitudinal barriers in various aspects of life. Literature and media has forever used words terms describing differently abled peolple that have negative, de-personalizing connotations and reinforce the stigma of these people and promote the idea of summing up a persons identity with a disability that he/she has.
The sense of superiority and the illusion of power in us stems from our inflated egos because we take our lives and our living for granted. The "what -if-I was -one -of -them" factor never crosses our mind. We fail to realize that our bodies are not an everlasting bunch of tissues. Each cell in our bodies has a fixed life span and if the cell dies before we do, it results in disability. The condition of wellness we presently enjoy is not permanent but just a passing phase. We are al "temporary abled bodies" which means if we are lucky enough to live long enough , each one of us will come to face with a disability which is an inevitable part of ageing and degenerative process provided we don't meet with an accident or illness before that! Disability is an integral part of human existence and the only difference lies in the number of "disabled years" that we live. For some it might be their entire lifetime and for others it might be just the last few days of their existence. Indeed, most of us will experience disability in ourselves or in someone close to us at some point in our lives and we too will have to reach out to others - to family, friends, neighbors, strangers and even the government for a helping hand.
We must understand that our distance from disability closes every second we live. This may sound as a morose and debilitating statement and very pessimistic too but that should not stop us from living our lives and fulfilling our dreams in anticipation of a life of chronic pain ahead!
If we find it difficult to expand our definition of "normal" so much so that it accommodates what we call "disabled", I think it makes more sense to call ourselves" temporarily abled". This would place every human being on an equal platform with no obstacle to the right to fully participate in the society. It would also broaden the general perspective regarding "norms" which we have established for a normal, healthy and fulfilling existence.
Research has shown that approximately 3% of all children born globally will be uniquely different - born to this world challenged in extraordinary ways. Also, one out of five adults between the ages of 45 and 65 will experience some form of disability for an extended period, and that 43 % of those over age 65 will ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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