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Posted by Philip on 1 May 2014, 1:26 pm in , , , , , ,

Blogging against blogging against disablism

Blogging Against Disablism Day logoMay 1 is Blogging Against Disablism Day. You probably didn't know that. I remember hearing about it years ago but had forgotten until I saw a tweet about it.

The problem with blogging against disablism is that "disablism" is the wrong term. We should be blogging against ablism. Ablism is the preference for or normative belief that being able is better or superior than not being able, in the same way that heterosexism is the preference for or normative belief that being heterosexual is better or superior than not being heterosexual.

So blogging against disablism is like blogging against homosexism.

That said, blogging against dysfunctionphobia, the fear or hate of losing function, might be a more useful thing. Dysfunctionphobia goes a long way towards creating ablism in the same way as homophobia does heterosexism.

Dysfunctionphobia also focuses on the need for individuals to examine their beliefs and values about function, in the same way as homophobia points at individual biases about sexual orientation.

Heterosexism and ablism are structural consequences that exist as a gestalt of individuals' homo- and dysfunctionphobic attitudes. They are difficult to influence individually.

Conversely, individuals are held accountable and chastised for homophobic statements or acts, like "I hate queers" or gay bashing. But dysfunctionphobic statements or acts — like "I'd hate to be disabled" or living in an inaccessible house — mostly go unchallenged, being deemed natural and beyond an individual's responsibility.

So, without wanting to be disrespectful to the organisers (good on them), perhaps May 1, 2015 could be Blogging Against Dysfunctionphobia Day. Whaddaya reckon?

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