Over on William Peace's blog, someone has left a snide
was invented solely for those in perfect agreement on everything to
communicate with one another, and therefore object to any
form of lively discussion on the part of others.
Mr. Peace says that, due to the response my remarks
have generated, the thread has now deteriorated and he will
delete all future comments from everyone. He could simply delete
those he regards as "empty rhetoric", but it appears to be mainly the
comments for which he has no answer and wishes to evade that are
the true targets of his ire. I was unaware when I initially replied to the
post that it was three years old, but a number of folks disagree with Mr.
Peace's viewpoint in no uncertain terms - a few are quite insulting, in
fact. My comment, on the other hand, is perfectly polite and (more
Mr. Peace'e fundamentally flawed view that anything he regards
as showing disabled people in what he sees as a negative
light serves only to reinforce a stereotype of them.
now, for the purpose of discussion, consider his proposition that
Disability is no respecter of persons, afflicting people from every walk
of life regardless of age, gender, status or intellect. Is Mr. Peace saying
that there are no physically disabled people who are far from the sharp-
est tool in the box? When I watch the video, I do not come away from it
thinking that all (or even any) blind beggars are 'useless' and 'thick' (and
I sincerely doubt that any fair-minded, rational person without an axe
to grind does either), only that, for the purpose of the ad, a beggar of
average intelligence was required. (I did wonder why the woman
was wearing sunglasses on a dull, rainy day 'though.)
Another thing - it wasn't just the beggar who failed to see the
potential benefit in rewording his sign; the other passers-by were
equally as unimaginative - as was everybody who watched the ad. It
can't be claimed that the man was portrayed as being stupid without
levelling the exact same charge at everyone else (bar one), as well as
the entire viewing audience. However, if an able-bodied person were
to suggest that it made 'people' look stupid, you'd think that he'd
had too much vinegar on his chips and was over-reacting.
promote. Shortcuts are usually taken, hence the woman not seeking
permission to change the beggar's sign, nor him asking what she's doing
as she writes it. Or, indeed, asking consent to touch the woman's shoes,
as a fellow 'activist' complains on the site that Mr. Peace links to in sup-
port of his views. (Saying that other people think the same as him
is hardly the clincher he seems to think it is.)
in some cases, even bearable. (Depends on the disability, obviously.)
Mr. Peace's problem seems to stem from his resentment of the notion
that not all disabled people are as capable as their more able-bodied
counterparts. Well, Mr. Peace, it's a sad fact that not all of them
are. The clue is in the name - 'disabled'.
intellectual giants whose physical disabilities are mere minor incon-
veniences, and who are far better and more capable human beings
than those who haven't been 'blessed' with some form of physical
impairment? (In just the same way that homosexual couples who
adopt, always seem to be shown as loving, caring parents to a
degree that hetrerosexual parents can only dream of.)
in their claim that all they want is to be treated in the same way
as the able-bodied, then they should be prepared to put up with
advertisers treating them in the same manner as they do everyone
else - as people to be exploited. That's true equality. Welcome
to the real world, Mr. Peace!
Sadly, in this instance, Mr. Peace comes across as just another
guy with a giant chip on his shoulder who wants to bully the rest
of society into seeing and doing things his way. Perish forbid that
any able-bodied person should ever be portrayed as being smarter
than a disabled one, or shown assisting or bestowing an act of
assistance on anyone less fortunate. That would never do.
Agree, disagree, couldn't care less? Or would you prefer a
punch-up at the back of the pub? Feel free to have your say in
the comments section - or not, as the case may be.
As someone seems to be exploiting this topic to 'settle old
scores' over in the comments section of Mr. Peace's post on this
subject, let me just make it clear that I hold no personal animosity
towards him. It is only on this one matter that I feel he is not only
mistaken, but damages his own credibility in his response to an ad
which I (and many others, some of whom are disabled themselves)
feel he has over-reacted to. Also, in 'shifting the goalposts' for his
reason for objecting to the ad and removing my follow-up com-
ment pointing this out, I feel that he has been less than honest.
As, I'm saddened to say, he has also been in saying that he
would publish no further comments from anyone on the matter
and then allowing a number of 'anonymous' attacks on me by one
or two people without the guts to identify themselves (or reply to
my post) who have sought to exploit the occasion for reasons of
their own. It's strange that none of the more vociferous replies to
Mr. Peace's post have attracted the same kind of hostile attention
as my own far more mild and moderate one. Strange indeed.
Says it all really.