Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Disability Blogs Roundup, #4

I'll start the roundup this month with a welcome to some new disability-related blogs. Australian David N. Wallace has put up TWO: blob is his personal blog, and LifeKludger is specifically for posts about strategies and technologies for barrier-busting. Samples: the former has a nice post on the concept of disintermediation as it relates to the history of disability rights; the latter has a recent post about the kinds of specialized robot arms Wallace would like to see developed.

Adaptive technology is also on the mind of the Angry Gimp: "People, quit telling me I'll walk again" is her plea to well-meaning folks who shower her with reassurances about medical advances that will cure her someday. "If people really want to help me out, really want to make me feel better, they'll tell me that there are people doing research to create adaptive equipment to make my life easier. They'll tell me that they are working for political causes that will give me the funding I need to survive." And speaking of making life easier (and surviving, too), David Faucheux suggests there might be a market for a "best cities" list for blind people, a list of places with audible traffic signals and well-maintained sidewalks, where the medical professionals and transit workers are enlightened.

Michael Bérubé has A Stupid Proposal: how about we retire the diagnostic insults ("idiot/moron/imbecile") already? Language, as always, matters. Edge-Centric and Ouch! have recent entries on the Spazz wheelchair--yeah, it's a real product name. The marketers claim it means "wild and crazy" in California, where the the company's based--but I'm here in California, right at the beach, and I say we have plenty of better words for them to try instead. At Along the Spectrum, Shawn has a terrific rant on autism terminology.

The mainstream press doesn't regularly cover the disability angle on current events, but blogs do: Edge-Centric is your go-to blog for perspectives on the Alito nomination, the Wal-Mart memo, and the passing of Rosa Parks, as well as ongoing coverage of Gonzales v. Oregon (the physician-assisted suicide case that the Supreme Court will decide this term). Ouch!, meanwhile, has also had an entry on Wal-Mart, and commentary on Canada's recent immigration ruling about families and disabled children. And history blogger Ralph Luker at Cliopatria briefly noted Freedom Ride '05, in which disability rights advocates are touring Illinois to protest continuing institutionalization in nursing homes and other group facilities. Haven't found any blogging on the plight of disabled survivors of the earthquake in Pakistan and India, but Chapati Mystery has been tracking relief operations, and there are news items here and here on the subject, for starters.

What are folks reading? Books are Pretty says the French graphic novel Epileptic is both "incredibly ambitious" and (at 361 pages) "exhausting." Jamie Bérubé and his dad are discussing Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince; Kestrell's reading Harry Potter fanfic with disability themes, and plenty of other stuff, too.

And finally, it's that time of year: Angry Gimp (who lives in Minnesota) wasn't so angry to find some wheelchair-friendly winter gear that's actually comfortable and warm; Katja at Broken Clay also blogged about the perils of winter weather, or not (she's in Colorado).

Whew! Okay, next round-up should go up sometime in early December. Tips are always welcome.

8 comments:

Jonathan Dresner said...

This is a great roundup, thanks!

dnw said...

Mike, thanks for mentioning my blogs in your roundup.

Just a note to let you know I've moved blob onto a different platform do the link to the disinternediation post is now http://dnwallace.com/blog/2005/10/14/disintermediation/

All the best, David

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