Naturalistic Neurodiversity

Exploring our differences through science.

Posts Tagged ‘epilepsy

Ableism in Atheism Anonymous #59

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Do you consider yourself to be a person with a disability?

Autism & epilepsy.

Have you (or do you personally know someone who has) felt out-of-place or limited your involvement with an atheist community because of disability-related situations?

I have yet to find a skeptic place that wasn’t all “asshole = autistic”. And the -tard suffix. And people look at me like I’ve got 2 heads when I mention that flash photography often = seizures (I do not, in fact, have 2 heads). And when people post videos of talks and such, they don’t have transcripts, & when I ask, people think it’s appropriate to demand to know why I-or anyone-would possible need transcripts.

I wrote a blogpost about atheism’s ableism problem and the reaction was largely ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK, when it wasn’t IGNORE IGNORE IGNORE. This is a problem. (Actually, you may have read that post if you’re who I think you are…)*

What steps could atheist communities take to become more inclusive?

Um, stop being ableists?

Restrict the ableist language. Leaders need to actively say that it isn’t cool. Not just quietly say “yeah, I cringe when they do that”, but tell them ASSHAT AND AUTISM ARE NOT THE SAME THING AND STOP USING MY NETSPACE TO SAY THEY ARE or whatever.

Caption shit. ASL interpret shit. If someone asks for an accomodation (ie me and my no flash photography need, the transcript thing) instead of being all defensive and demanding to know why, just say OK, and do it, or find someone who can do it.

Meet places that are accessible to mobility devices & accessible by public transit. My city supposedly has great transit, but many meeting places are over an hour on transit and/or involve a half mile or more walk. I’m in good physical shape & can do that, but a lot of people can’t.

Any other thoughts about ableism and atheism?

The ableism issue is enough that I’ve pretty much stopped even trying, & given how much crap I have been trained to tolerate that’s pretty damn bad.

Response #59 from the Ableism in Atheism survey.

*I think the post may be this one, but if not, it’s still an eye-opener:  http://timetolisten.blogspot.com/2012/02/skepticisms-ableism-problem.html

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Ableism in Atheism Anonymous #39

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Do you consider yourself to be a person with a disability?

Epilepsy

Have you (or do you personally know someone who has) felt out-of-place or limited your involvement with an atheist community because of disability-related situations?

Internet forums contain flashing and strobing ads, as do computer talks.

What steps could atheist communities take to become more inclusive?

Limiting contrasts in presentations is the most helpful.

The above is response #39 from the Ableism in Atheism survey.

This is something that is easy for people to overlook who do not have epilepsy, but when it comes to flashy presentations and computer graphics, less is more. Find out more at http://www.epilepsy.com/epilepsy/seizure_triggers

Ableism in Atheism Anonymous #8

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Do you consider yourself to be a person with a disability?

No.

Have you (or do you personally know someone who has) felt out-of-place or limited your involvement with an atheist community because of disability-related situations?

No.

What steps could atheist communities take to become more inclusive?

only schedule meetups at guide-dog friendly locations.

The above is response #8 from the Ableism in Atheism survey.

This is actually something I haven’t thought of, but a very good idea. Within the USA, guide dogs are allowed anywhere their human owners are allowed, by law (it’s part of the ADA). In other countries, some places may very well be allowed to refuse access to service animals. That doesn’t mean that every place is friendly for dogs, however. Places which are cramped or have no place for a dog do hir business aren’t as welcoming. Also, keep in mind that service animals are not just for blind people, but also for any number of disabilities, including invisible ones (such as epilepsy).