bio_dave_hingsburgerYou scare me.

You there, the one who I thought supported the cause of civil civil liberties for people with disabilities. The one who was horrified at Donald Trump’s mocking of the disabled reporter. The one who said ‘Who would do something like that?’ You said it with sincerity and even furor. And you know the shittiest thing of all? I believed you. I believed you actually cared about how people with disabilities were spoken about, how people with disabilities were portrayed and how people with disabilities deserved respect. More fool I.

I guess that why you scare me so much.

Because I believed you, I taught myself that I can’t trust myself or my judgements. I can’t identify an ally. I can’t identify those that secretly revile me and those like me and who pretend otherwise to advance political agendas from those who truly support me, and people like me. You hurt my sense of trust, of others, and of myself.

Why?

I see your posts. I see you calling Trump all sorts of names. Yeah you, the person who got all teary and all upset when discussing Trump’s behaviour and stating that he was a ‘bully’ and a ‘name caller.’ Yeah, now you are the one calling names the one using the tactics that repulsed you when ‘the Trump’ did it.

Worse the words you use are most often about his intelligence. Words that has systematically been used to oppress and to segregate people with intellectual disabilities. Now, though I don’t use most commonly used words for people who are supposedly of low intelligence, and I protest only the ‘R word’ when it’s spoken or written, I see the pattern of the comments and the posts … all equating ‘low intelligence’ with bigotry and bias and bullying. All suggesting that Trump is a low intelligence kind of guy who deserves no respect.

Now I don’t respect Trump because of his behaviour. It’s his behaviour alone that disturbs me. I don’t care about anything else. I don’t care what his intelligence level is, as I’ve found this to correlate with pretty much nothing. I don’t care what his education is, as I’ve found this to correlate with less than nothing. I don’t care about who he is at all … I care what he says and what he does. I care that he makes racist, sexist, homophobic, disphobic and ableist comments. I care that he sees women as people to be valued, on his scale, and assaulted on his whim. I care about those things.

Why aren’t you talking about those things?

Why are you suggesting that his behaviour is a result of a slow mind rather than a heart charred with hatred and prejudice … isn’t that the issue?

So next time you are going to call him a name, think about it. Don’t bully the bully.

So next time you are going to focus on his intelligence, think about it. Don’t classify some. Instead comment on his behaviour.

So next time you pretend offence at disphobic, ableist, language and behaviour, look deep in your heart and if you find that, beyond puffed up outrage, you actually do care. Let that change you.