Friday, August 19, 2016

Our Election

I don't believe I'm saying anything shocking and controversial by declaring this election to be very distressing on everyone.  I do not ever intend to use this blog as a forum to be political or sway anyone's opinion, as I think that would be wrong.  Everyone has their own right to vote their heart and I respect that.

The one thing I will address is my dismay and sadness over a candidate imitating a disabled man in front of a crowd of people.  As the Dad of a disabled young man I believe I have the right to voice my opinion on that. 

There is NEVER any excuse to make fun of a disabled person, especially in public, and most especially when running for public office.  Yet I have never heard an apology, any remorse, or any attempt to assure the special needs community that they will be treated with dignity and respect.  To me that is a frightening thing.

Those of us who have a family member with special needs understand the stares, snickers, comments, and imitations.  Make no mistake...they HURT.  There are few things that ever cut me as deeply as knowing that someone felt it was ok to disregard my son and treat him as though he were beneath them.

Twenty years ago if a candidate for office was seen doing something like that, it would be over no questions asked.  But today we seem to have a much different standard, as though we can ignore things we don't want to see in favor of what we do.  So long as something confirms our own beliefs we embrace it and then pretend the rest don't exist.  As long as the perceived "misstep" doesn't personally involve our circumstances we can just wash it away.

Personally I would never associate with any person, in any way big or small, that would feel its ok to publicly humiliate a disabled man.  In my eyes he humiliated my son at the same time, and all of our special sons, daughters, siblings, and parents.  

At some point we have to bring the line of decency and humility back to a level that everyone can take pride in.  It has to start at the top.  If we can't hold presidential candidates to a higher level....then who?

Be well and God Bless.  Tom

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