I am sharing the post here, for you, which hopefully he won’t mind, because I’d like to look at what he said from a slightly different perspective.
Chris Herbert, Facebook post, Dec. 8, 2015:
Getting frustrated by some people expecting racism from me, because I got blown up.
Here it is:
Yes. A Muslim man blew me up, and I lost my leg.
A Muslim man also lost his arm that day wearing a British Uniform.
A Muslim medic was in the helicopter that took me from the field
A Muslim surgeon performed the surgery that saved my life
A Muslim Nurse was part of the team that helped me when I returned to the UK
A Muslim Healthcare Assistant was part of the team that sorted out my day to day needs in rehabilitation when I was learning to walk
A Muslim taxi driver gave me a free ride the first time I went for a beer with my Dad after I came home.
A Muslim doctor offered my Dad comfort and advice in a pub, when he didnt know how to deal with my medicines and side effects.
Contrary to that,
A white brit spat in my girlfriends face for ‘fucking a cripple when you could have me [him]’
A White brit pushed my wheelchair away from a lift so he could use it first.
A White brit screamed at my Dad for parking in a disabled bay when I was in the services coming home
(Although, alot of people helped in my recovery! I dont hate white brits either! hahaha)
Point is, fuck off. I know who I dislike, and I know who I dont. I know who I appreciate, and I know who I dont.
If you want to hate an entire race of men and women for the actions of a few dickheads feel free, but don’t push your views on me, thinking I am an easy target because one douchebag decided it was my day to die.
Blaming all Muslims for the actions of groups like Daeshe and the Taliban, is like blaming all Christians for the actions of the KKK or Westboro Baptist Church.
Get a grip of your lives, hug your family and get back to work.
See, I told you, thoroughly cool and decent guy. The reaction to this post, that I have seen is, rightfully, universally positive.
He makes a great case, maybe the best I’ve read, for seeing people as people and for not succumbing to stereotypes.
But I’d like to focus on the second part of his post, where he describes how some people have responded to his disability.
We all have stories about how the non-disabled have reacted to who we are, what we have, and the lives we live.
There is something distressing about how this post is being read.
I’ve not seen anyone who has stated clearly, that what happened to him as a disabled man is not OK. That people have no right to treat him in that manner.
Let’s realize that this guy is a war hero. He went over in the defence of his country to fight for our freedoms and our rights.
This is NOT OK.
For those of us in the disability community who became disabled, rather than being born so, we all know the shock of the sudden change in status.
No one told me that I would face prejudice like I couldn’t imagine.
This post represented a perfect time to get both messages that are contained within.
First, what’s with the rampant prejudice against people you don’t know. Second, what’s with the rampant prejudice against people with disabilities.
I would love it if someone simply acknowledged that there IS rampant prejudice. But people don’t want to see it … so they don’t.
I think Chris Herbert is a brave man for writing what he wrote.
That he is experiencing the prejudice that he is fighting against – that which is born of ignorance and of hate.
To Chris: I don’t know if you will ever read this, but if you do, know that a fat, old dude in a wheelchair in Canada, admires you.
And I thank you, as a disabled man, for bringing into sharp focus the kinds of prejudice that our community faces.