Tuesday, April 19, 2016

I am Inconvenient

Reprinted from Yes, That Too

Gifted students are inconvenient. They get bored, sometimes hyper because of their boredom. They want to know why things work, not just what you do. Or they are gifted in one specific area that isn't covered much, and they drag that area into everything.

Disabled students are inconvenient.

How varies by disability.

The student who uses a wheelchair takes up more space in the hall.

The student who is blind needs braille textbooks, a screen reader, maybe both.

Because these disabilities are visible, are obvious, something is done (not necessarily something good- exclusion is often the thing.)

They get their wheelchair, or they get their braille, or they get sent to a special school where everyone is blind and everyone uses braille and it's not even a special accommodation.

You can't pretend it doesn't exist simply because it is inconvenient to deal with.

You decide to do nothing about it, but you can't pretend it's not there.

Autistic? Depressed? OCD?

They don't want to deal with that.

So it just doesn't exist.

We don't have those problems here.

They do, of course, but they pretend it's not there.

With no obvious difference, nothing you can see that says there is something different, they can pretend.

They can pretend that we are making things up.

They can pretend that we are just being difficult.

They can pretend that we are simply lazy.

They can pretend that our inconvenient behaviors are there for any reason at all.

So it is for a reason which makes it purely our fault.

So it is for a reason that does not require accommodation or education, but shame and punishment.

It exists, but they can pretend it doesn't.

And then we pretend it doesn't exist either, not wanting to face what they dish out when we try to make them see what is in front of their eyes.

Disability becomes an inconvenient part of ourselves that we would simply rather ignore, and then they have won. I refuse.

I will be inconvenient, and they will just have to deal with it.