The Americans with Disabilities Act: To Boldly Go Where Everyone Else has Gone Before!
While I think Disabling America is Entertaining and humorous (e...moreThe Americans with Disabilities Act: To Boldly Go Where Everyone Else has Gone Before!
While I think Disabling America is Entertaining and humorous (especially considering the subject matter and amount of information), at the same time I think it's sad and scary! As a Disability Rights Activist who supports the Americans with Disabilities Act, here are my thoughts:
First and foremost, people with Disabilities are not "the handicapped". Perry's continual use of this outdated descriptor throughout his book and in his subtitle is very telling. He may choose to use this term to describe himself, but for the majority of people with disabilities (my wife included), the term is considered offensive. If he really wanted to reach out and educate he would not use this outdated label. Please read Disability is Natural by Kathie Snow or visit her website by the same name for more information. She has made articles available, including "People First Language".
Secondly, Perry continually tries to make the point that people with disabilities were never really discriminated against before the ADA was passed. Absolutely a FALSE claim! For one example take public transportation. Rosa Parks was well known for her sit-in protest for civil rights. At least Blacks were able to get on the bus! In 1978 a group of disability rights activists in Denver, Colorado decided to protest for access as a civil right. In 1983, this issue was taken nationally. This was the beginning of the ADAPT disability rights group (which then stood for American Disabled for Accessible Public Transportation). The Disability Rights movement spread across the country and for seven years activists blocked buses and got arrested. Try getting up some stairs with a motorized wheelchair or even a manual one - If you can't get on the bus or in a building - it's discrimination.
Thirdly, Perry claims that the ADA has segregated people with disabilities. He points out the accessible parking spaces a lot. ADA requires 1 in 25 parking spaces to be accessible. I would say this is reasonable since according to the US Census, 1 in 5 people in America have some form of disability. Perry can make his strongest argument of ADA causing segregation on these parking spaces because a person must have a parking permit to park in them, yet the parking spaces are located right next to a regular parking space - not segregated.
People with disabilities do not want "special" things - just things that everyone can use. Everyone can use a ramp, but many people can not use stairs. Everyone can use a bigger restroom, but many people can not use narrow little restrooms with narrow doorways. I am always thankful for automatic doors or door openers when I have my two young children in our double stroller or radio flyer wagon!
The ADA was a big step toward integration rather than segregation. People are now able to live in the community rather than be locked away because they have the medical diagnosis (for whatever reason) of having a disability.
Perry does make some very good points - for example, I am not about to argue - some lawyers do take advantage of the ADA (just like any other laws). I was looking for a critical view of the ADA and I certainly found it in Greg Perry's Disabling America. His repeated use of the demeaning H-word was the hardest thing to read. I hope he will eliminate the H-word from future editions - afterall, it's no longer used in Federal Legislation (but then again - his point is to speak out against Federal Legislation - so this is probably just one more subtle way to do that). Just know that Disabling America does not give the full story of the ADA.
This book begins with an awful title and ends rather awfully too. Chad is not Cerebral Palsy! The last words in the book are: "...Cerebral Palsy is re...moreThis book begins with an awful title and ends rather awfully too. Chad is not Cerebral Palsy! The last words in the book are: "...Cerebral Palsy is really just a very small part of who I am. In every other way, I'm just like you!" - yet all the words before it basically say the opposite. The author tries to use Chad to represent all aspects of Cerebral Palsy which isn't very realistic.
Speaking of unrealistic - the book suggests that readers can experience what living with CP is like by putting three pairs of socks on each hand. Followed by this suggestion is "That's kind of what I feel like, living with Cerebral Palsy. It isn't easy."
The fact is Cerebral Palsy affects each person differently.
My biggest question (and I really mean BIG) - Why is Chad shown so much bigger than other people in the illustrations? He's apparently bigger than either his mother or father and bigger than three siblings or classmates combined!
There are better books that I recommend (they don't necessarily deal just with CP) check them out on my Amazon.com Listmania List : Great Children's Books on Disability
By the way, my wife has Cerebral Palsy. She uses a motorized wheelchair and has a speech impairment. She is also the mother of two children and a college graduate. Needless to say, she didn't like this book and we won't be reading it to our children.(less)
A Big Little Life ranks among my top 10 personal favorites by Dean Koontz. This one of Dean's rare non-fiction books and offers great insight into the...moreA Big Little Life ranks among my top 10 personal favorites by Dean Koontz. This one of Dean's rare non-fiction books and offers great insight into the personal life of Dean and how one dog changed his life.
In each little life, we can see great truth and beauty, and in each little life we glimpse the way of all things in the universe. If we allow ourselves to be enchanted by the beauty of the ordinary, we begin to see that all things are extraordinary. -Dean Koontz, A Big Little Life, Chapter One(less)
Two thumbs way down! I got this book on sale for $1.99 along with others in the "Little Book of Big Ideas" series. I thought this would be a good, sho...moreTwo thumbs way down! I got this book on sale for $1.99 along with others in the "Little Book of Big Ideas" series. I thought this would be a good, short, inspirational book - it was not inspiring at all, neither was it original or clever. I think it was a little book full of crap. It's no wonder that the series did not sell well. Elaine Cannon told me herself that the book on "Joy" was the best and she signed a copy of that one for me, so I've kept the Joy and gotten rid of the rest :-)(less)
It is really interesting to read a personal account of someone who went through the Holocaust. The amazing thing to me was that this really happened -...moreIt is really interesting to read a personal account of someone who went through the Holocaust. The amazing thing to me was that this really happened - it wasn't fiction, and yet it contained terror that most fiction writers would not have been able to imagine. This book was written for younger readers, so it is very easy to read. It leaves out some of the gore that might have been too gruesome to read. The author has written sequels about her life after surviving the Holocaust but I've heard they aren't as good as I have lived a Thousand Years.(less)
**spoiler alert** My first goodreads first reads win! This is my kind of non-fiction book - easy to read with lots of pictures (or in this case mostly...more**spoiler alert** My first goodreads first reads win! This is my kind of non-fiction book - easy to read with lots of pictures (or in this case mostly maps).
A mix of humor and interesting information.
The cover unfolds to a full-sized map which would be nifty to hang up if I had a library or study. A nice looking book.
Trinklein who lived in Idaho for 20 years, keeps mentioning Mormons. I've noticed this in 5 Lost States - there may even be more that I missed. Having an LDS background myself, I can not recall a temple being built in Iowa under the direction of Joseph Smith as Trinklein claims. The only temples completed before moving to Utah, were in Kirtland, Ohio and Nauvoo, Illinois. If Trinklein is referring to one of these, he should clarify that the temple was not in Iowa. FYI here is what he wrote about this in HALF-BREED TRACTS:
"Probably the most famous buyer was a guy named Joseph Smith, who gathered his Mormon followers on a Half-Breed Tract he purchased in southeast Iowa. The Latter-Day Saints then built a temple and settled in for the long haul. It's entirely possible the Mormons might have grown their sphere of influence and eventually tried to form their own state, based on their religious practices. I'm not speculating about this; that's exactly what they did. But they didn't get around to it until after they had migrated westward to Salt Lake."
INTRODUCTION: "Fifty States, It's such a nice, round number. It might even seem preordained that America would gobble up the perfect amount of territory to create fifty just-right states. Sorry, It wasn't nearly that tidy."
"I've always felt a sense of wonder gazing at old maps, imagining the stories behind each squiggly line. Maps are a record of individuals trying to make a difference in how the world works."
ABOUT THE MAPS: "All maps have a purpose, perhaps even an agenda. Mine are no exception."
BOSTON "If every New England squabble led to the creation of a new state, the U.S. flag would have a thousand stars."
FORGOTTONIA (loved reading about this one) "So as long as America keeps drinking sixty-four ounce fountain drinks, Forgottonia's people will survive. In fact, about the only thing that could hurt Forgottonia would be medical reports suggesting high-fructose corn syrup isn't healthy. Oh."
FRANKLIN (named after Ben Franklin) "The lesson here is that if you're going to name a state after a living historical figure, you should probably ask the person first....It's worth noting that Congress had a unofficial policy against naming new states after people (dead or alive). It's a guideline they held for more than a century, with only one exception: Washington."
GREENLAND - Prime Real Estate. Even George W. Bush Was Interested. "It's true that Greenland is mostly ice, but that could change quickly as global warming kicks in."
GUYANA "Many have argued that the best way to preserve its rain forests is to offer the protection of U.S. law. (Admittedly, this is not a terribly compelling reason to annex another country, but America has invaded places for flimsier reasons.)"
"I predict that if oil turns up in Guyana, relations with the United States might warm up considerably."
HOWLAND "Those landing strips remain the island's strange irony. The United States made great effort to build them, the Japanese were intent on bombing them, and Amelia Earhart likely died trying to find them. Yet there is no record of any plane ever landing on Howland Island."
ICELAND "What if America had offered to buy, rather than invade, Iraq? I know the idea sounds silly, until you run the numbers. Given the best estimates of the cost of the war, the United States could have offered each Iraqi citizen about $103,000 if they would agree to become an American. A family of five would get a cool half million dollars. Those numbers are the actual dollar costs, per Iraqi, of the war."
SOUTH CALIFORNIA - Actually They Wanted To Call It Colorado "Pico's proposal suggested calling the new state 'Colorado', which, by the way, ranks among the most-coveted state names ever. After southern California's rebranding attempt failed, the Arizona territory laid its plans to rename itself 'Colorado.' But the rectangular state to the north beat them to the prize."
I won this title through the goodreads first reads giveaway program. There were 20 copies available and 1200 entries. I'll start reading, updating &...moreI won this title through the goodreads first reads giveaway program. There were 20 copies available and 1200 entries. I'll start reading, updating & reviewing this book as soon as it arrives in the mail :-)(less)
I received this book through the goodreads first reads giveaway program. After receiving my free book, I realized it was a Christian Ministry book - t...moreI received this book through the goodreads first reads giveaway program. After receiving my free book, I realized it was a Christian Ministry book - the religious overtones did not bother me until the second half of the book. My copy arrived in hardcover - which was a nice surprise. I read the dust jacket flap and was hooked right away - unfortunately the first half of the book interested me more than the second half. The second half is more about Kristen finding a new life in Christ than the attempted suicide issue. Here are a few examples of how the religious tone annoyed me:
Kristen goes to church and a stranger approaches: "It's a good thing your suicide attempt didn't work," she said. "You would have gone to hell if you'd died." -Chapter 13, A New Reality
"Gratitude filled my heart. I was grateful that I'd lost my legs. That, more than anything else, had brought me to Christ What if it had never happened? I shuddered, thinking of where I could be. Losing my legs showed me how big and real God is. For the first time I realized losing my legs was worth it. I wouldn't go back, even if I could." -Chapter 21, Overwhelming Gratitude
"Urge anyone expressing suicidal thoughts to get professional help from a doctor or counselor - preferably a Christian counselor." -Resources
Another pet peeve in the Resources section, Kristen keeps going back and forth between including males in her advice. She writes "listen to him or her" and then two sentences later writes: "If she says that she hates her life, she can't handle it anymore, she hates herself, she wants to commit suicide, she wants to die, or something similar, believe her words. And if she won't tell you with her words but is telling you with her actions, listen to and believe those." Following all these her and she directives, "he" is included in the next sentence.
With that said, The first half of the book is 5 star material - the story draws readers in immediately. It's interesting to see how Kristen adjusts to life in a wheelchair - how she faces the obstacles of stairs and narrow doorways. As the book opened, Kristen's story brought back memories of how deaths of grandmothers, relatives and friends affected my life growing up. An emotional story of finding personal meaning in life.
The following lyrics appropriately accompany Kristen's story: "I can see clearly now.... It's going to be a bright, bright, bright, bright sunshiny day." - Jimmy Cliff
"There's a light in me, that shines brightly. They can try, but they can't take that away from me." - Mariah Carey
and finally, Amazing Grace
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, That saved a wretch like me. I once was lost, but now am found. Was blind, but now I see.
"It hurt to care." -Chapter 3, Carefree No More
"Around us, in all directions, were headstones of others who had died. They'd lived their lives, and all it came to was a name on the headstone." -Chapter 4, What's Wrong with This World?
"Their intentions were good, but I wondered why people had waited so long to tell me. If they really believe I'm special - and that God has a special plan for my life - why didn't they tell me before? Why did they wait until I'm lying in a hospital bed to tell me how much they love me, how much God loves me? I had needed to hear that just as much in the past as I did now." -Chapter 9, Kind Words and New Questions