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14 Oct

The Disabled Don’t Belong With Us

As functioning “able bodied” human beings in society we have been conditioned to feel entitlement in all aspects of life whether you are rich, poor, black, white or every color of the rainbow.  According to an article I read a little while ago, “The common notion of any entitlement is a belief one deserves something, which is in part a grasp for confidence, which might not exist. And entitlements begins with attempting to raise one’s power.”

With that being said how dare you… YES YOU! Those of you who feel entitled enough to play God and say that people with disabilities do not deserve a place in this world like you do. What makes you better that the next individual you view as disabled? I am sick and tired of having these awkward and demeaning conversations with people who feel like anyone with a disability or suffering from a mental illness should not be a part of the world created for all of us. I have had conversations with different individuals talking about people with disabilities. We talked about the extreme and mild behaviors seen in many individuals suffering from different mental health issues and the replies I have gotten included “why can’t they just put these people down and stop wasting our tax dollars?” “We really need to let the natural selection take its place and let the idea of survival of the fittest happen naturally”

Now I have to say everyone is entitled to their own opinions or feelings. The people that said the things above are entitled to how they feel. But for no reason should any of us ever forget that we are just has “fragile” as these “disabled” human beings we put down. We are all subjective to mental illness and it comes in various forms. And it could take is something as little as a car accident to change your entire life around and next thing you know I will be taking care of you and someone will be confused about why their tax dollars is going into services that make your life better. It could be a never ending cycle or we could all drop our sense of entitlement and gradually be able to recognize that other people have needs and the same rights as we do.

Now our sense of entitlement isn’t just going to disappear overnight as growth cannot be forced but we can find ways to educate ourselves and put ourselves in the shoes of the same people we chose to condemn. Because in the blink of an eye it could be you or a loved one feeling the burdens of societies view on the “disabled”. What will you do then?

Chinenye Otakpor