How Can People Listen to Us?
Advocates invent many strategies. Every strategy is meant to get someone more powerful to listen, agree and change how they act. People get together in groups. They raise money and hire people to make important points with politicians. They research facts and write papers. They block buses and roads. They create meetings and interrupt other meetings. They make phone calls and sometimes make enough phone calls to block the phone system. They hand out pamphlets explaining their ideas and experience. They make web sites and connect with other people’s web sites. They light candles and hold hands. They sing and chant.
When people want people who are labeled disabled to be leaders they try to get us to do all these things. Not one of these strategies to make change was invented by someone who doesn’t speak. All those strategies are difficult, and usually impossible, for a person who doesn’t speak. They are also difficult, and usually impossible, for someone like myself who goes through life with the hands-on support of other people.
This Cincinnati, Ohio event is part of a series of Community Conversations focused on gifts and possibilities of community. For more information go to A Small Group.