Exotic Freak, Incapable of participation in every day life and Un- sexual these terms define me, well at least according to my A – level media teacher.
I on the other hand would describe myself as an active wheelchair user turned activist who is the founder and co director of The Disability Campaign. Alongside this I am studying music, theatre and entertainment management at the number one arts university in the UK and manage and consult for international artists and millionaires.
But how is the rest of the world meant to see the strong, independent women I am if the mainstream media and even our education systems do not reflect the ability largest minority group in the world the incapable, un – sexual exotic freaks or to be politically correct and quite frankly a decent human being the 11 million people in the UK alone with a mental illness and or a physical or learning disability/difference.
And if we were to bring in the social model of disability which states ‘People with impairments are disabled by the fact that they are excluded from … mainstream of society as a result of physical, organisational and attitudinal barriers’ then we are basically talking about the entire human race. The entire human race that are being brainwashed into thinking perfection exists when the truth is we all have different interests, preferences and abilities that make us who we are.
Think about it, when was the last time you felt represented in a piece of media ? Since I am probably the least sporty person on the planet Paralympians are off limits and so my next reference point in The Undatables on channel 4 and I most definitely am not undatable.
This brings me to the title of this piece ‘roll models’ and yes this play on words might seem like it only applies to wheelchair users like myself but if we apply it the broader context I want to use my
weekly column within Liability magazine to provide a platform for the real role or ‘roll’ models of the world.