I Missed Blog Against Disablism Day

Which is okay, because I don’t really have anything coherently political to say about it.

This is what I want to say.  My beloved Uncle B. was on crutches or riding around on some kind of motorized scooter my whole life.  He was also the kind of man who could take you to the edge of a Civil War battlefield and point out to you which regiments crouched behind which rises. 

And he often wanted to get to those rises and see from that perspective and he rarely could.

When I went to Fort Negley for the first time, it was really all I could do to not cry.  The paths are wide and not too steep.  The interpretive materials are put at levels so that people at all heights can read them.  Once you get into the fort, there are wide wooden walkways one can get a scooter on.

I’m not saying that the whole thing is perfectly and easily accessible.  There’s some rough terrain up in the fort itself.

But it’s navigable.

My Uncle B. could have gotten up in there.

It’s such a small thing, making paths wide enough and the rises not too steep, but it matters.

One thought on “I Missed Blog Against Disablism Day

  1. What I don’t understand — as the daughter of a woman with a chronic condition that finally put her in a wheelchair, as a web professional, as a homeowner slowly renovating — what I don’t understand is that 1) it’s so easy to make most public places accessible to most people who aren’t 24 and athletic and 2) it benefits everyone, not just people in wheelchairs (or the blind, what have you). Why doesn’t the mall built in 1983 have automatic doors? The grocery store built in 1969 did, and there are lots of shoppers who are slow moving: hauling a stroller, on crutches, carrying that expensive big-box item. At the train station, the people I see most grateful for the elevators are riding to the airport or Amtrak station with huge suitcases. Web sites get included in this rant: it’s not that hard to create a good-looking web site that doesn’t become unworkable when the font is changed, images turned off or JavaScript disabled.

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