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Do you have 'ability privilege'?

Posted by on Mar. 13, 2013 at 3:50 PM
  • 79 Replies
3 moms liked this

Even the most sensitive and socially aware among us takes some privilege for granted.

By Rich_Maloof 1 hour ago
  •  

It's a big month over at Everyday Feminism (EF), where they're finding creative ways to celebrate Women's History Month. While the site is a big draw for women, their core mission is about empowering anyone who finds herself or himself marginalized by societal norms.

Photo: Privileges / Jamie Grill/Getty ImagesThe online magazine is raising issues that demand readers to challenge their assumptions about others and about themselves, even when that means asking women to question their treatment of other women. They're asking readers of any gender, mindset or persuasion to recognize how they may have a privilege they don't fully appreciate. Even more, EF also wants people to recognize that the privilege tends to be accompanied by subtle biases over others.

Do you have a privilege you're taking for granted? Check out their piece on age privilege, and appreciate that you're not written off as boring, uninformed or close-minded every time you open your mouth. Read about heterosexual privilege and appreciate being able to talk casually about your home and family life. Or read about thin privilege, a subject we touched on yesterday, and appreciate being able to find clothes that fit without visiting a specialty store. 

More from MSN Living: 25 ways technology has changed our lives

Even the most sensitive and socially aware among us takes some privilege for granted. You simply can't move through time and space forever consumed by what others can or can't do. But EF asks that we still take a moment to recognize that the simple capability to move through time and space is in itself a privilege.

"As able-bodied individuals," EF's Shannon Ridgway writes, "we live in a society that regularly and easily accommodates our every need. As such, we often forget the privilege that this entitles us."

More from MSN Living: 20 things everyone should do at least once

Here's a selection of five items from Ridgway's list. See the entire article at EF's 19 Examples of Ability Privilege.

#13.  As a healthy person, you don't have to think about your daily pain level when planning events and activities.

#10.  You can expect to be included in group activities.

 #9.  Leisure activities like gardening, knitting or woodworking are easy for you.

 #7.  You have ample role models of your ability to whom you can aspire.

 #1.  You can go about your day without planning every task, like getting dressed or going to the bathroom.

by on Mar. 13, 2013 at 3:50 PM
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annabl1970
by Platinum Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 3:51 PM

19 Examples of Ability Privilege

19 Examples of Ability Privilege

Credit: Joe Gerstandt

 

As able-bodied individuals, we live in a society that regularly and easily accommodates our every need. As such, we often forget the privilege that this entitles us.

The following list includes examples of the benefits those of us who are able-bodied — i.e. not physically disabled, chronically ill, severely obese or otherwise physically limited — experience. (Cognitive ability, a.k.a. neurotypical privilege also exists, but deserves its own article, so will not be included in this list).

Keeping these things in mind will help us to relate to those among us who encounter barriers due to physical limitations and to gain more understanding of what they go through on a daily basis.

  1. You can go about your day without planning every task, like getting dressed or going to the bathroom.
  2. You can play sports easily.
  3. Public transportation is easy for you.
  4. Air travel is relatively easy for you.
  5. Others don’t get frustrated with you in public for needing special accommodations or holding up lines.
  6. You don’t have to worry about others’ reactions to your able-ness.
  7. You have ample role models of your ability to whom you can aspire.
  8. You don’t frequently encounter communication barriers.
  9. Leisure activities like gardening, knitting or woodworking are easy for you.
  10. You can expect to be included in-group activities.
  11. As an able-bodied person, you are well-represented in movies, books and TV shows. Typically you don’t have to rely on others to accomplish tasks.
  12. Others don’t assume you need to rely on them to accomplish tasks.
  13. As a healthy person, you don’t have to think about your daily pain level when planning events and activities.
  14. You can expect to find housing that accommodates your physical needs.
  15. People don’t make fun of you because of your ability.
  16. Public access to buildings, parks, restaurants etc. is easy for you (this especially applies in small towns wherein handicap access may be limited).
  17. If you get hired people don’t assume it’s based on your ability.
  18. You don’t face job discrimination based on your ability.
  19. Your ability isn’t the butt of jokes in TV shows and movies.

By no means is this a complete list of able-bodied privilege. Please share more examples below!

Shannon Ridgway is a Contributing Writer to Everyday Feminism from the great flyover state of South Dakota (the one with the monument of presidential heads). In her free time, Shannon enjoys reading, writing, jamming out to ’80s music and Zumba, and she will go to great lengths to find the perfect enchilada. Follow her on Twitter@sridgway1980.

annabl1970
by Platinum Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 3:52 PM

By no means is this a complete list of able-bodied privilege. Please share more examples below!

http://everydayfeminism.com/2013/03/19-examples-of-ability-privilege/

ButterMeUp
by Silver Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 3:57 PM
3 moms liked this
This whole check your privileges movement gets a huge eye role from me.
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katinahat
by Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 4:03 PM
1 mom liked this

I'm sorry, I just don't understand the point of this post. Is this an attempt to elicit "able bodied people shame" or something?

____________________________________________________________

Christian, vaccinating, fun-loving, breastfeeding, cloth diapering, positive disciplining, nerdy, extended rear-facing, bookworm, creative, outdoorsy, autodidactic, friendly family.

"If you judge people, you have no time to love them." -- Mother Teresa

Ms.KitKat
by Platinum Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 4:29 PM
5 moms liked this

 

Quoting katinahat:

I'm sorry, I just don't understand the point of this post. Is this an attempt to elicit "able bodied people shame" or something?

 I took it as: 'we" able-bodied people never think aout the daily challenges/obtsacles those less abled must consider on a daily basis.

 

Ms.KitKat
by Platinum Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 4:32 PM
2 moms liked this

 Wehen I was 20 I had back surgery. Doctors could not guarentee with any certainty that I would ever walk again. and If i could walk, it was unceratin if I would ever be able to carry a pregnnacy to term.

I left the hospital at the age of 20 with a walker. I used the walker for several week but then used my "human" walkers because of the shame I experienced. My relatives would act as my human crutch-literlally holding me up. It was a very long year but slowly I was able to cut my own food, walk un-aided, etc....I fully know my privlegde of being able bodied and I am oh so grateful!!!!!

annabl1970
by Platinum Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 4:35 PM
2 moms liked this
No
The point of the post: there are a lot of people who can't enjoy simple things as walking, cooking, hearing and etc - all those things, we take for granted and don't appreciate.



Quoting katinahat:

I'm sorry, I just don't understand the point of this post. Is this an attempt to elicit "able bodied people shame" or something?


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ElitestJen
by Silver Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 4:37 PM
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Oh, for crying out loud.  These things aren't privileges.  They just are.  Many of them are choices. 

annabl1970
by Platinum Member on Mar. 13, 2013 at 4:37 PM
Glad you recovered! Best of luck!


Quoting Ms.KitKat:

 Wehen I was 20 I had back surgery. Doctors could not guarentee with any certainty that I would ever walk again. and If i could walk, it was unceratin if I would ever be able to carry a pregnnacy to term.


I left the hospital at the age of 20 with a walker. I used the walker for several week but then used my "human" walkers because of the shame I experienced. My relatives would act as my human crutch-literlally holding me up. It was a very long year but slowly I was able to cut my own food, walk un-aided, etc....I fully know my privlegde of being able bodied and I am oh so grateful!!!!!


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