Thursday, 26 April 2012
This Is For Alex.
He Deserves Better.
This is Alex. Can you tell that he is a member of this choir? Does it appear that the choir even sees him?
I am a Mother of a child with special needs, and my son is in a wheelchair, too.
Our society doesn’t offer many opportunities to disabled children or adults, so when the opportunity comes along it is a blessing.
Alex had the chance to join his peers. He finally had the chance to be a part of the group. Do you realize how rare and important it is to have special needs and be able to participate in a “normal” activity?
The everyday things that we take for granted these people are unable to participate in. This past weekend I took my son to an Easter egg hunt at our church. I figured I could help him get a few eggs and we could enjoy the company of our church family. When we got there the grass was so high that I was unable to push his wheelchair through. He weighs eighty pounds so I couldn’t carry him. He cried because he wasn’t able to play with the kids and we had to leave. Are local parks and pools are not handicap accessible, so I can’t even take him to the park on nice day so we can play. We can’t go to places like Monkey Joes, because he could get hurt. Parent’s don’t invite us to play groups, because they don’t see the point. Our children have very little opportunity for a “typical” childhood.
Alex has most likely been an outsider for most of his life. He is being forced to always look in. Do you see how special it is that he could join the choir? Can you imagine how happy he must have been? Now imagine how he felt when he had to once again sit on the side lines and be ignored. Imagine the betrayal he felt when his choir director and the rest of the choir members pretended not to notice that he had been pushed to the side. Imagine how his Mother felt when she saw her baby being discriminated against. How difficult it must have been for her to not jump up grab Alex and start screaming at the school officials. She didn’t though. No, she held her tongue so she wouldn’t further isolate her child. She didn’t want the injustice of this situation to hurt her son more than it already did. Do you think there should be repercussions for the choir director or other faculty members that were involved with this show?
This occurrence is wrong and continues to happen in our society.
Things have to change. These people go through more than most of us go through in our lifetime. Yet, they are still pushed aside, made fun of, or ignored. There has to be a place in our society for these amazing people. They have purpose. They deserve to belong. There is a boy named Soren Palumbo that gave a speech to his schoolmates several years back. The speech talked about the way that our culture perceives people with special needs. He went on to say that this special group of people are the only group that can’t defend themselves. These people have an innocence they will never lose, yet our society makes fun of them. Why would you attack the defenseless?
How can we put an end to what happened to Alex?
What do you think we can do as a community to embrace and include children and adults with special needs?