Advocacy: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
The Good: Disability rights organizations are continuing to make themselves heard, through well-orchestrated presentations to Congress and the Obama administration, regarding policy decisions. The National Disability Rights Network presented Congress with a report documenting the abuse of children in the schools by means of restraint and seclusion, and advocating specific policy changes to protect children with disabilities. Also, a coalition of disability rights organizations sent an expansive list of policy recommendations to President-elect Obama. Both of these initiatives were supported by the Autistic Self Advocacy Network.
The Bad: As blogged by Bev on Asperger Square 8, a British newspaper, the Daily Mail, has printed an article advocating eugenic abortion of autistic children because they supposedly wreck their parents' lives. The Mail is an infamous bigoted rag and not to be taken seriously; however, the article got a large number of disgusting comments from people who agreed with it.
The Ugly: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has decided to give its Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award at the Oscar Awards ceremony in February to — Jerry Lewis. Yes, that Jerry Lewis, the misogynistic, gay-hating, narcissistic slimeball who has been pissing off disability rights activists for the past four decades with his annual Muscular Dystrophy Pityfest. About two thousand people already have signed an online petition protesting that abominable choice.