A reader who didn't even have the courage to sign their name, wrote in response to my post yesterday that I had written 'selfish nonsense' about 'housing and disability'. I had several reactions to the slap.
First, anger - On a blog that's up front about being about disability issues, I wrote about having to make a significant lifestyle change because of the issues I face as a disabled person and the fear I have about being inadequate in a crisis along with the isolation I face because of the lack of access experienced in the country. Not easy stuff for a proud person like me ... then I get slapped because I wrote about this topic ... which apparently is piffle ... by someone who came here to read about what they wanted. (Who's really being selfish here?)
Second, anger - I'm guessing that whomever wrote the comment is probably non-disabled and has probably never had to think about disability and housing and therefore 'disability and housing' seems an unimportant topic. I get tired to those without disabilities telling those with disabilties that we do not have the capacity to determine our own agenda. I just pray that this person does not work with people with disabilities directly, I can imagine, "Your tears about teasing are self centered, now I want to talk about employment." The worst of the worst disphobic attitude is that you know best what I should do.
Third, anger - the implication that I don't care about the Latimer situation is outrageous. While I have no need to justify myself to anyone ... I have written about the Latimer case in newspapers across this country. I have responded to every interview request by every news source no matter how small. I have posted about the issue here on this blog. I produced a two hour CBC radio documentary, award winning, called: Life, Death and Disability ... that directly addressed the attitudes that lead to the murder of people with disabilities. The airing of this so upset the Latimer side that you'll see them curse me out on various Latimer support websites. The enemy knows my name.
Fourth, anger - do people think that I just sit down at the typewriter and words automatically flow from my hands. That I can 'will' a piece to appear? That this is all so easy for me? Firstly, I have written so much about Latimer and the 'case' that it's difficult to find a new toe hold. Secondly, when writing about another individual - even if you hate what they've done - you need to be more careful when stating facts. You need to check. My anonymous abuser just gets to be hopping mad ... I'm supposed to do something that gives food for that anger. Well, given my history with this case and the things I've already written, might you think, "I'm sure Dave is working on something and will write when he is done." In fact, I now have a toe hold but I need to be sure of one piece of obscure information. I'm tracking that down. Because, while on the blog I rant, I try to rant without libel, I try to rant with information. So, I will write what I want to write when I have the information that allows me to say what I need to say.
Fifth, anger - I have never in my life left an anonymous comment. Ever. Most people on the blog sign something, intials, real name, net name ... something and I appreicate that. But if I write something nasty, it has my name. I think it's only respectful to the writer to know who says what. The courage of an opinion is easy when you leave it like an abandoned child at the doorstep of another.
OK, that done, for those of you who are also waiting for a Latimer response, I hope to have the information I need next week. There are only a couple people who might have what I want, then I will write, of course, about Latimer.
Thing is now I'm feeling shy about making myself vulnerable while being honest about my reactions to my life and my growing disability. I found so many of the comments yesterday helpful both in practical ways (about the practicalities of selling the house and other things to consider) but also in emotional ways (That thing about the greatest disability is fear - really hit home with me). But when I started my blog, I was fearful, my worst fears would be that people would interpret my writing about my journey as a newly disabled person as 'drivel' and 'self involved' ... and now my worst fear has happened. I'm not quite sure what to do with that.
Selfish nonsense, indeed.