Sigh... I wanted to make this about cute Valentine's Day projects that aren't too babyish. Feisty Pants is "almost fourteen harrumph" (read that with rolled eyes and your best teenage sneer) and has a boyfriend and is just too old for little kid stuff. Except for really cute Valentines, and Hello Kitty, and puppies, and anything that makes her squee. But every time I turn around, the world seems to want to wax the bottom of the hand basket we are going to heck in so it will slide faster.
We have an idiot named as Secretary of Education, who seems to not understand about things like the ADA or the IDEA act or FAPE or have any effing clue about education being for EVERYONE and not just the rich. We have a congress, full of people getting FREE health care that we pay for, determined to take away everyone else's. We have an ignorant, sexist, racist leader who is worried more about his own power and prestige without any seeming understanding that political office is meant to be about public service, not private gain. And a gazillion jackasses following behind him who think it's now time for some weird orgy for bullying.
I am so done. Seriously, stick a fork in me. But while am waiting for that moment when I shall spontaneously combust, (and please let it be next to some d*ck who deserves to burst into flames with me...), I want to get a few things off my chest.
1) There are NOT more and more people on SSI or disability benefits simply because they are lazy. Or are getting better at scamming the government. If it seems that way, it's because more people with disabilities are living due to better medical care. (Feisty Pants is one of those people.) And because better equipment means they can get out and about more. And just maybe, because we no longer hide our disabled away in institutions and attics.
2) Children with special needs are not just pampered wussies who parents mollycoddled them too much. Autism is a difficult processing disorder. ADHD kids want to be good. A melt down is NOT a temper tantrum. And we are talking about CHILDREN, why do people expect children to be better behaved than adults? If you honestly think that a special needs child just needs more "discipline" (by which you simply mean punishment- not actual discipline. Punishment is when you smack your kid. Discipline is what I use when I don't smack you.) then you, dear reader, are an asshole.
3) Disabled children grow up to be adults with talents and skills and value all their own. How dare you expect my daughter's education to be a glorified daycare?! How dare you expect her to not have access to health care as good as anyone else's?! How dare you not allow her to dream big, have ambitions, contribute to society, and make the world a hell of a lot better then this mess we have apparently created?!
I grew up with disabled siblings. Children of my older sister's generation were usually shuttered away in horrible, overcrowded institutions where they were neglected at best. My parents had to sue the state they lived in to assert my sister's constitutional right to an education. When my parents wanted to adopt, they were told they would have to institutionalize my older siblings because it was too hard for my family or no adoptions. (My folks very rightly told them to buzz off. Ended up with two adoptions anyway. ) They, along with so many others, fought daily for every inch of progress made for kid's like Feisty Pants to have a decent shot and a fair start.
So, for my folks, who fought so hard. For my sister who never was given the chances she should have had. For my brother. And most definitely for Feisty Pants. We will not go quietly back into the dark ages of disabled rights. We will not go quietly back into institutions and back bedrooms and quiet poverty. We will not go back. And if I have to, I will gladly spontaneously combust and take all you d*cks with me.