It has come to my attention that speaking out about issues facing people with disabilities will get me no where; that this should be a forum where people get their daily dose of inspiration and feel uplifted by my words. Well, I’m not here to paint rainbows and belch butterflies. It has always bothered me that because I walk with crutches, I am expected to serve as inspiration to those who are “able-bodied.” I realize that this is something odd to complain about, but think about it this way: my parents, teachers and doctors (and insurance companies) have spent thousands of dollars and countless hours “normalizing” me, making sure that I wasn’t excluded from activities, classes or opportunities because of my disability. So, when people say that I inspire them for living my life with a disability, they are essentially inspired by how “normal” I appear to be doing–even with Cerebral Palsy.
That being said, it also concerns me how reluctant people are to question or speak about issues that people like me face on a daily basis. No one really has the courageous conversations it takes to break down the walls that keep the disabled unemployed, impoverished and isolated, and ignoring the issues works about as well as an NYPD hashtag campaign (#myNYPD, really?!). So, I would like to clarify what my aim is with Crutches and Spice. I will present viewers with the diversity of disabled people, and despite not being a source of news, I will share current events I think are important to talk about as they relate to how I think they may affect the lives of disabled people. I will also share my opinions and not hold my tongue because if you want the crutches, you have to take the spice as well.