Archive for the ‘respect’ Category

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Reblogged: Not-So-Retail Therapy

February 24, 2013

This post reblogs a refreshing alternative to conspicuous consumerism, and adds some of our own thoughts triggered by the reblogged post. We should all strive to evaluate our needs and wants more carefully. There is a big difference between the two. Oftentimes what we THINK we need is actually a very strong desire, but doesn’t fit into a “vital” category: food, shelter, safety, water, health.

Speaking for ourselves, we find shopping (for ourselves) to be mostly a chore or obligation, and not one that we would consider “fun” or “relaxing.”

Shopping with someone else, to assist xem in finding things xe needs, is a different story depending on the person. For instance, our sister N needed to find dress shoes to match her dress for the Inauguration Ball (her boyfriend was on Obama’s campaign staff and the Inauguration committee staff also- thats why she was able to go). I (Andrea) and our mom met her in DC and we were out for 4 hours. I was exhausted by the end of it. All for a pair of shoes. But she NEEDED them for the occasion. And I figured since I don’t get to see N much now because we live 6 hours apart, that shopping was a way to spend some sister-time together. I actually insisted that I accompany mom and N on the shopping trip, to their pleasant surprise (they both know I hate malls due to noise and crowds.)

I was certainly thankful to be OUT of the mall when we all finally finished. After that I think we had a nice meal together. Mom and N probably said something about being proud of me for braving the mall for so long. I must have thought to myself “glad to help” and “thank goodness for comfortable ear plugs!”

Shopping for pleasure, to us, is an oxymoron most of the time.

Collaborative, mostly written by Andrea, finished by Ivan in her absence

Adventures in Thanks-Living

Most folks who know me well are aware that I do not take much pleasure in shopping–especially the kind of retail shopping that involves plunking down major cash outlays for transitory and often cheaply made consumer goods. In short, I just about have to be dragged to a shopping mall.

That said, I can understand how shopping can be classed as “retail therapy.” There’s the thrill finding that seemingly perfect item to fill a need, or more likely, a want in a person’s life. I’ve been there and done that and have come to find the outcome severely lacking.

Now I practice “not-so-retail” therapy. Let me explain. As a member of The Compact, I avoid buying new items that contribute to an ever-growing waste stream and violate principles of justice and equity that I hold important.

My latest “not-so-retail” therapy sessions involved Goodwill, Staples, and Dollar Tree. Here’s the…

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Reblogged: Shopping Expedition gone Awry

December 16, 2012

Wow. There are so many things wrong in this situation. Talk about deflating! This kind of thing is what many of us autistics experience in daily life. We need to figure out how to educate staff in grocery stores and retail in general, on proper etiquette when interacting with disabled customers who happen to bring friends/support people.

I would love to read suggestions from other self advocates, on how we can educate customer service employees to interact appropriately with autistic people and others with disabilities that might cause them to “appear” less intelligent, for lack of a better expression. Especially those like E who went with a friend, and had the employee talk to her friend rather than directly to her.

My wording is poor, but this has to go out. We have been sitting on this post for a very long time now.

Andrea

The Third Glance

While I know this is really minor compared to some things people go through on a regular basis, and my visible disability is temporary, I just wanted to share a story that happened to me yesterday. Not for reactions, just to point out that things like this happen. All the time.

I’m still on crutches, and as such, need to go with someone to the grocery store. My friend and I have a deal that involves a weekly trip, and we’ve been shopping together for more than a year. I keep him on task (he spaces out a lot, plus, I know where everything in the stores we go to is, and can quote prices, too), and he deals with people for me. It’s a good trade. So anyway, we were on our way out of a store last night, and were about 20 steps away from the register and…

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From diaryofamom: she’s not a baby

November 27, 2012

This may very well rub some autistic self-determination proponents the wrong way. I was taken aback the first time I read it. Some truths are harder to accept than others. 2 positive things to take away from this:

1) this mom didn’t want to write about it or admit it BUT SHE DID BOTH! There will be time to dissect all the “why she may not have wanted to admit it” later on. I don’t know the reasons. They are her reasons. But I think this is a big step for her and her family. I say this as an autistic person myself.

2) Her other daughter, an NT, pointed it out to her. This girl has ally potential already. Key word is POTENTIAL.

Kudos to DiaryOfAMom for fessing up and writing this. That was a huge step. One that should be recognized.

Ivan

a diary of a mom

*

I don’t like this post.

In fact I hate it.

Its content is raw and embarrassing.

But I’m publishing it.

Because I think it matters. 

~

She was right.

Of course she was right.

That’s why it hurt so much.

*

That’s why I got so defensive when she said it — and tried to pretend that I didn’t know what she meant.

“Mama,” she said, “you don’t have to talk to her like she’s a baby.”

*

The words hung in the air — thick, accusatory.

My gut reaction was denial.

“I wasn’t, honey.”

It sounded ridiculous. Like I’d just said that the sky wasn’t blue. But look, Katie, my brow is furrowed as though I’m confused, and I’ve even cocked my head to the side for good measure, so I must not know what you mean.

“Mama,” she said, going along with the game,”ask me the same…

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Ann Coulter Discussion Continues

November 24, 2012

We are very glad that people are still thinking about Ann Coulter’s use of the r-word. Just yesterday I saw that someone had found our blog using the following search phrase: “autistic girl’s letter to Ann Coulter”
We do not know of such a letter, just the one we found and reblogged, written by a young man with Down Syndrome.
Talk is good, as it induces thinking. Now it is time for action.

When we have more time and energy, possibly over either Thanksgiving or (more likely) Winter Break, we will attempt to create a list of bookstores which sell her books, with contact information so that people can call and voice their concerns. We would love some help with that if anyone is up to the task; then it can get done much faster and we can get on with making calls or writing/emailing those bookstores! Seriously, we need to do this. Hitting Ann Coulter where it hurts the most, in her wallet, is the best way to send her and everyone else a message loud and clear: that hurtful and offensive comments do not and will not go unnoticed and unchallenged any longer.

Solidarity, fellow advocates and allies!

Let’s do this!!!!!!

Ivan

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Reblogged from Many Of Us

November 7, 2012

This is so awesome! We thank every veteran we come across, if they are not socially inaccessible at the time (engaged in other conversations or things like that.)

Veterans, thank you so much for all of your sacrifices.

Welcome home.

Andrea the Integral
For all of us

Many of us's blog

BEFORE YOU GO
–Author Unknown

(Please read to the end, then click on the website — this is wonderful!)

The elderly parking lot attendant wasn’t in a good mood! Neither was Sam Bierstock. It was around 1 a.m., and Bierstock, a Delray Beach, FL, eye doctor, business consultant, corporate speaker, and musician was bone tired after appearing at an event.

He pulled up in his car, and the parking attendant began to speak. “I took two bullets for this country, and look what I’m doing,” he said bitterly.

At first, Bierstock didn’t know what to say to the World War II veteran. But he rolled down his window and told the man, “Really, from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank you.”

Then the old soldier began to cry.

“That really got to me,” Bierstock says.

Cut to today.

Bierstock, 58, and John Melnick, 54, of Pompano Beach…

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WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL??? Or, Fuck you, OryCon!

November 6, 2012

Wow. So apparently Orycon, a sci-fi convention in Oregon that had scheduled an autism panel WITHOUT AUTISTIC REPRESENTATION, said, after being called out for not having autistic representation, that they would cancel the panel discussion.
The advocate doing the calling-out even explained what the problems were with the panel.

What she got for all her efforts and energy and VALUABLE SPOONS was a fake apology.

Yeah. She spends alot of time and energy and that’s what she got. I don’t really understand the entire situation to be honest, but I know enough to be absolutely outraged.

BUT WAIT, IT GETS BETTER! I couldn’t make this shit up if I tried.

THEY HAD THE FREAKIN PANEL DISCUSSION!

Because of YOU, OryCon organizers, certain advocates will probably need days to recover from their frustration and overload and wasted efforts to explain to you what was wrong and how you could correct the situation.

I don’t believe this shit. OMFG, I’m so freaking angry right now.

But I highly doubt this is the first time something like this has happened in the history of autistic self advocacy.

K, and whoever else made such an effort to reach out to these goons on behalf of autistic self advocates everywhere, I am deeply deeply sorry, that your valuable energy was so shamelessly disrespected.

These people clearly had no appreciation whatsoever of the time, energy and stress you may have gone through in order to advocate for yourselves and the rest of us. But I surely do appreciate it. I would never have known about this if K and others hadn’t blogged about it in the first place.

And yes, I used the word goons to describe the organizers of OryCon. Why? Because they fucking lied about having cancelled the discussion panel. Bullshit they weren’t aware of it happening. Read K’s posts I linked to. All of them.

I hope this gets signal boosted into the stratosphere!

Nothing about us, without us!

Ivan, Andrea, and Athena

 

 

 

 

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Reblogged: An Open Letter to Ann Coulter

October 24, 2012

More on the response to Ann Coulter’s insensitive tweet! This letter is amazing! I wouldn’t have been able to write something like this completely devoid of anger and harshness. Whether Ann Coulter understands this letter and takes it seriously doesn’t matter one bit. What is FAR MORE IMPORTANT is that many people are speaking out and responding to these kinds of letters from people who write them. People are talking about this issue and taking a stand. That’s how we can effect change.

Bravo, John!

Andrea

The World of Special Olympics

The following is a guest post in the form of an open letter from Special Olympics athlete and global messenger John Franklin Stephens to Ann Coulter after this tweet during last night’s Presidential debate.

Dear Ann Coulter,

Come on Ms. Coulter, you aren’t dumb and you aren’t shallow.  So why are you continually using a word like the R-word as an insult?

I’m a 30 year old man with Down syndrome who has struggled with the public’s perception that an intellectual disability means that I am dumb and shallow.  I am not either of those things, but I do process information more slowly than the rest of you.  In fact it has taken me all day to figure out how to respond to your use of the R-word last night.

I thought first of asking whether you meant to describe the President as someone who was bullied as a child…

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