Leaving Treadmarkz Across the Universe

Posts Tagged ‘disabled rights

Double-Amputee Oscar Pistorius Eligible to Compete In Olympics…AND the Paralympics

with 4 comments

by Treadmarkz

I have been quietly following this story, about Oscar Pistorius, a double amputee who wishes to compete in the Olympics for his country South Africa alongside fully able-bodied competitors. If you’ve been reading my work, you’d probably guess that this is exactly what I have wanted: Pistorius is now eligible to attempt to qualify as an Olympic athlete, not a Paralympian.

What do you all think of this? Do the carbon-fiber “legs” that he wears give him an unfair advantage or give his body and unnatural performance contrary to what the spirit of the Olympics is all about in the first place? The experts at MIT who have tested his “legs” say that they do not. They are made to mimic the performance of a biological leg and foot as naturally as possible. In this age of performance-enhancing drugs, though, this is bound to raise some eyebrows.

Underneath the story I have linked to above, there is a series of reader comments and one of the readers made a great point (which I myself responded to). He basically said that Pistorius should be required to either compete as an “able-bodied” athlete or a “disabled” athlete. He should not be able to have it both ways, even though it looks as though for now at least Pistorius will be doing just that. If Pistorius is claiming to be “able bodied” enough to compete in the regular Olympics, then is it unfair for him to compete in the Paralympics against “disabled” athletes?

But hey, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here! Pistorius still has to qualify for the Olympics (or be selected as an alternate if he does not make a “qualifying time”). If he can’t do it, then we’ll know the “legs” gave him no unfair advantage and he will go back to being a “disabled athlete” again. Let’s let this one play out.

Further Info on the RatifyNow Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities BlogSwarm

leave a comment »

by Treadmarkz

Last week I wrote something about the RatifyNow Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) Blog Swarm. The CRPD is a U.N. treaty first signed in 2006. Now we just need to get as many countries on board to assure that disabled people all over the world are ensured a life of just as much dignity that I’ve always felt I can count on in the U.S.
I recieved a message from Andrea Shettle, the Co-ordinator of the Blog Swarm with a wealth of further information which I had omitted, because I did not realize how big this could be. Rather than trying to give you more information about it myself, I’d like to post the message I recieved from Andrea here. It is the only way to do the Blog Swarm and the Convention justice. It will suffice to say that I think that the CRPD could be just as important a document as the ADA has been in the US but on a global scale this time!

I know there is a lot here to browse but if you are interested, take a good look and click on the many underlined links to get more detailed information on what it is all about. I hope a lot of people can contribute to making this a world-wide reality! In that spirit, please pass the word on to your friends world wide.

Here is the message from Andrea (by the way, Thanks Andrea!) –

If you’re interested in browsing through the entries, the RatifyNow CRPD Blog Swarm 2008 is now up. Maybe that’ll help in understanding what a blog swarm is and more about the CRPD itself. Here’s the blurb for it:

From Australia … from the USA … from India … from New Zealand
… from Fiji … from the Philippines …

Writers and bloggers from around the world joined together to help
celebrate and promote the first legally binding international human
rights instrument to protect the rights of people with disabilities –
the international disability rights treaty, called the Convention on
the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).

They celebrated by writing blog posts for the RatifyNow CRPD Blog
Swarm 2008, which can now be read at
http://ratifynow.org/2008/03/29/ratifynow-crpd-blog-swarm-2008/

What did they write about? Some of the topics include …

… The story of one advocate who watched the birth of the CRPD among
grassroots advocates with disabilities and others in the 1990s …
… How the CRPD could deliver new hope for people in India with
mental disabilities …
… How the CRPD represents an evolution from the charity/medical
model of disability to the social or human rights-based model …
… How the CRPD could make travel go a little more smoothly for
tourists with disabilities …
… Why the CRPD matters for people who use personal assistance
services or who are seeking the freedom to explore their own sexual
expression …
… An allegorical tale about farmers, spoons, and plows: Why the CRPD
is well worth celebrating and why our work isn’t done just because the
CRPD is about to take full legal force …
… And more …

All at the RatifyNow CRPD Blog Swarm 2008, and all available by
following the link to:

http://ratifynow.org/2008/03/29/ratifynow-crpd-blog-swarm-2008/

Celebrate and learn about the CRPD through the RatifyNow CRPD Blog Swarm 2008.

Then invite other people to do the same. Please circulate this notice
or post it at your blog or web site — with, of course, a link to the
blog swarm at

http://ratifynow.org/2008/03/29/ratifynow-crpd-blog-swarm-2008/

Incidentally, the idea for holding this blog swarm was initially inspired by an earlier blog swarm on another topic (to which I had contributed and enjoyed reading):

http://karasheridan.com/?p=164

From International Disabled Rights Treaty Blog Swarm,