I had wanted this blog to be mostly fluff and fun. We have googly eyes forfuckssakes. We have taupe ribbons on cats. I had hoped to have a silly corner of the world where the institutional oppression and ingrained ableism wouldn’t matter and we could giggle at ourselves.
The world isn’t allowing that to happen. Amanda Baggs (http://youneedacat.tumblr.com) is being treated abominably by Fletcher Allen Hospital. She was asked if she “was at peace with her decision.” Not once, not twice. Three times. That’s a question you ask someone who’s asking to die. Not something you ask someone who wants to live, and wants to live badly.
So, as disabled people, we’re doing what we can. We’re making what phone calls our spoons allow. We’re social media crisising. We’re trying flash blogs and twitter campaigns and anything we can do to raise “awareness” (there’s that annoying word!) of the systemic oppression that’s literally killing us.
Sadly, there are probably hundreds of Amandas out there right now. There are people who are being denied lifesaving treatment, being encouraged to die. There are people being told their lives aren’t worth the cost. They don’t have the means to get the disability community behind them.
We need Allies. We need people that the medical establishment will actually take seriously to step forward and say “hey! NOT OK.” They’ve already determined we’re subhuman, and they don’t seem to be caring that they’re treating us thusly. We need you! We need you all to stand up to Fletcher Allen, and every other place with ableist oppression and help us make it stop. We cannot do it alone. Amanda has more support behind her than anyone at Fletcher could have imagined, and she’s still being treated this way. Can you imagine the hell a non-verbal Autistic is going through who *doesn’t* have the weight of the Autism world behind them?
So now we have a different call to action. Still wear your taupe ribbons. Still tell people what they mean. And then spread the word on medical ableism. Tell Amanda’s story. Tell Paul Corby’s story. Tell everyone that the medical establishment has unilaterally decided that disabled lives are not lives worth living.
And help us fix it.