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Thread: I ready hate supercrips....in response to "For the lazy quads".

  1. #1

    I ready hate supercrips....in response to "For the lazy quads".

    . Living with a disability is hard enough without being compared to ‘supercrips’ and their ability to “Overcome” by climbing Mt Everest backwards in a wheelchair or performing other super human feats. A number of critiques of the ‘supercrip’ metaphor argue these activities then become the yardstick by which the success of the rest of the disabled population is measured against with the inevitable failure. The following are examples of the analyses of the ‘supercrip’ metaphor, from various disabled writers. First we have this (Bauman at http://www.ncpad.org/yourwrites/fact_sheet.php?sheet=243)

    Some disability advocates, as well as media researchers of disability images, are concerned that many ads, like Nike's, use disabled athletes, which serves to extend the Supercrip image (Clogston, 1990; Covington, 1988). John Clogston defined the Supercrip: the disabled person is portrayed as deviant because of "superhuman" feats (i.e., a mountain climber who has a prosthesis) or as "special" because they live regular lives "in spite of" disability (i.e., a wheelchair user who swims). The image reinforces the idea that for someone who is portrayed as less than "complete," the accomplishment is "amazing." David Lewis, a quadriplegic who is community relations coordinator for the Center for Independent Living, a non-profit group based in Berkeley, California, says, "It would be nice to have a severely disabled person depicted instead of your superjock 'crip.' "Attractive and sports-minded individuals and wheelchair athletes do not truly represent the diversity within the disability community. "Not every person with a disability is young, beautiful and athletic (McLaughlin, 1993 Aug. 22, p. 31)."

    The following titled Why I Hate SuperCrip Stories http://www.geocities.com/dhcpolwnk/articles.htm#supcrip Laura Remson Mitchell writes of the feeling of oppression from reading inspirational ‘supercrip’ stories of people with MS.

    “I felt inadequate and overwhelmed, terrified not only by the uncertain future of my MS but also by the idea that because I had MS, I now had to do more, to be more, to achieve more. The message I got from those "inspiring" stories was that I not only had to cope with my MS; I now had to live up to somebody else's unreasonable expectations!

    For a long time, I thought it was just me. After all, as many people have pointed out, nobody can make you feel guilty (or inadequate, or ashamed) without your cooperation. But after living with MS for many years, including 10 years as an MS peer counselor, I know that others have reacted the same way I did. Finally, I think I understand, and I'm more convinced than ever that those "inspirational" stories generally do more harm than good.”

    The literary dominance of ‘supercrip’ stories in the media have provided a club with which to beat up the non-inspirational disabled person. While the following critique, by Colin Kennedy Donovan, could be seen as a bit tongue in cheek found at http://www.pscap.org/db/index.php?na...article&sid=37

    The other role, played by Marlee Matlin and Chris Burke, (and disabled athletes everywhere) is the role that Queer disabled writer Eli Clare calls the “Supercrip.” This is the consistent media portrayal of heroic, brave and inspirational disabled people who are successful despite being disabled. In other words, it’s only when disabled people act like able-bodied people—whether in miniscule ways like lifting a finger or over-the-top-triumphs like climbing fifty mountains with one leg-- that the media is willing to give us any airplay. That way able-bodied people can suck up all of the strength we use to get through the day and use it to feed a voracious (but most likely subconscious) superiority complex.

    This sort of analysis shows how disability metaphors operate to oppress the disabled person who is without a desire or the financial ability to climb Everest. The ‘supercrip’ metaphor says to disabled people that unless you ‘overcome’, by performing a feat or feats, which provide proof to a sceptical world, you are a failure.

    Every time I read a supercrip story I just want to vommit.


  2. #2
    big high five dowdy.

  3. #3
    Yes, I totally agree. It's not so much what one can do physically with their body, but more what a person can do with their mind is what really counts.
    "Life is about how you
    respond to not only the
    challenges you're dealt but
    the challenges you seek...If
    you have no goals, no
    mountains to climb, your
    soul dies".~Liz Fordred

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by all-buggered-up View Post

    “I felt inadequate and overwhelmed, terrified not only by the uncertain future of my MS but also by the idea that because I had MS, I now had to do more, to be more, to achieve more. The message I got from those "inspiring" stories was that I not only had to cope with my MS; I now had to live up to somebody else's unreasonable expectations!
    yeah, this is too true. esp. when the person speaking is full of themself and thinks they know it all.

  5. #5
    Overall, I agree. As someone who's had MS for some time, it seems to me that the wunderkind stories are only inspirational for the first year or so post-diagnosis; later, when you finally get it that you're not going to die from MS, but you're not going to be cured, either, those mountain-climbing stories get mighty hard to take. We have local MS fundraisers where seemingly AB people with MS ride bikes and hike for mile upon mile to "raise awareness" of MS, while the rest of us line the barricades wondering where we fit into this glowing picture.

    Now, I do think it's wonderful when people find ways of continuing to participate in activities they love; but such endeavors should not be used as bludgeons against the rest of us who - either through choice or bad luck - need to find other ways of adapting.

  6. #6
    Senior Member tooley's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cass View Post
    yeah, this is too true. esp. when the person speaking is full of themself and thinks they know it all.
    What's wrong with having some self-esteem?

    I think a better thread for you and your crew would be "what I don't hate".

    You'd have alot more free time.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by tooley View Post
    What's wrong with having some self-esteem?

    I think a better thread for you and your crew would be "what I don't hate".

    You'd have alot more free time.
    really?? you get up as a quad in pain for 23 yrs at 6 or 6 a.m.(OR 5 DURING MONTHS OF FLIGHT TEST) to go to your engineering job, work for 10 plus hr days? give birth 18 yrs ago, care for that baby as single mom, still go to work? come home, cook supper, drive him to all the kid things, grocery shop, etc etc REALLY?? DO TELL ME ABOUT TIME. self esteem is HARDLY the issue. you might try checking prof before posting. because that's been my life. i'd say you fit quite well in above posted quote. and i'm so pissed at your audacity and ignorance right now i could resort to name calling. but wise is my friend so i won't.

    "my crew" ??? jesus, mary and joseph....help me shut my mouth at this person.
    Last edited by cass; 10-06-2010 at 12:56 AM.

  8. #8
    I did my time fighting for the rights the disabled australians have, try 16 committees at one time, one of them was fighting for an attendant care scheme, while studying at university, represented my state at the national level in the political organization declared war on the powers that be . thinking about putting my hand imn for the senate seat.

  9. #9
    AND DID YOU READ WHO WROTE THE QUOTES look up their work ignorance and burying your head in the sand is no way to live..btw these are among the milder quotes.

  10. #10
    Senior Member brucec's Avatar
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    it all comes down to your own self assesment, and how you feel about yourself.
    if seeing a supercrip makes you feel small, it's your problem.
    think of all the able body people trying to compare theirselves with a superstar sportsplayer and do you think every single able body person feels insecure because they cannot keep up with the jones?
    We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.
    Ronald Reagan

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