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Posted inCT Viewpoints

Separating myth and reality in aid in dying

The virus is surging and the death rate is increasing as the already overburdened health system is in crisis. Yet, there is talk of the legislature again considering a bill to permit doctors to provide lethal prescriptions to terminally ill adults requesting them. This is despite the fact that such bills have stalled in committee five times in the past and due to the pandemic, the legislature may meet virtually for much of the upcoming session. Proponents will be talking about choice and compassion. Let’s separate rhetoric from reality.

Posted inCT Viewpoints

Get disability out of the abortion debate

In the 1990’s, I was part of a group of women who wanted to reconcile reproductive choice with disability rights in the then new era of prenatal screening. Some in our group had disabilities such as spina bifida or muscular dystrophy that arose in utero. Others like me had conditions like cerebral palsy that occurred at or after birth but were concerned about ripple effect. Would we all become a new class of illegitimates?

Posted inCT Viewpoints

Disability and invisibility in Connecticut

I was in the park, enjoying the roses when a good-looking man said to me, “I’m an orthopedist. I’ve taken care of your type of people. I know what wrong with you.”

No, he didn’t.

I’m often short tempered, a procrastinator and not detail oriented. I’ve bombed out writing poetry and can’t seem to learn how to structure a novel. These are real flaws. Athetoid cerebral palsy, though, is just a physical difference. In a world free from prejudice, the issues it creates would only be logistical – how to get from here to there, how to pour without spilling, how to make yourself understood by strangers when you’re nervous.

The casual comment made me feel the invisibility that disability rights advocate Anastasia Somozo would later refer to at the Democratic National Convention.