Heroes and Victims in the Disabled Community
All of this talk about Brian Sterner being victimized by a physically able deputy, and my early posting regarding Christopher Reeve, got me thinking. We all know it is unhealthy to look upon someone as a hero just because they are disabled and manage to live their lives. But is it also unhealthy if we too quickly stamp the victim label on the disabled? Sure Brian Sterner had a terrible thing happen to him in this one instance, but are we missing out on the broad range of accomplishments of an entire class of people by thinking “victim” automatically. For instance, Brian Sterner is an advocate for disabled people’s rights. He has been for years. That should count for something. Advocate for rights, not just a victim whose rights were violated.
Here is a great article I found on the subject that illustrates what I mean.