Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Offering "False Hope" to a "Vulnerable Population"

From Salon.com, here's a post from blogger Becky Blitch, a 28-year-old whose neuromuscular disease has prevented her from ever walking. She points out that "Sen. Obama, whose father-in-law lived with multiple sclerosis from his late 20s until he passed away in 1990, is the first presidential candidate to make disability rights a central plank of his platform."

By contrast, she examines McCain's weak record on disabilities. (The Association of Americans with Disabilities offers a comparison of Obama and McCain. McCain chose not to answer their questionnaire.)

But she reserves her most critical commentary for Gov. Palin: "Sarah Palin is, of course, a very smart politician....She must know that every time she talks about her son Trig and vows to fight for 'special needs children' she is taking advantage of a very vulnerable population, people who are tired of fighting with insurance companies and schools and employers, people who desperately need to know that they are not alone. She is shattering their invisibility -- but in doing so, she's only offering false hope. This is fundamentally unfair, and outrageous."

And a post from a man with spina bifida who encourages people to read Obama's nine-page plan for people with disabilities. "If you're like me," he says, "it might make you work a little harder to make sure Sarah Palin's pretty face doesn't steal this election."
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