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Guest blog post: Mixed Feelings: 24th Anniversary of The Americans With Disabilities Act by Blane Beckwith

This is the last of our guest blog posts about the 24th anniversary of the ADA.

Blane Beckwith has a blog called Crippled Politics: “A Place for Political Discussion | General Politics & Disability Politics | A Progressive and Radical Viewpoint.” The following is an excerpt of a post he published on July 27, 2014.

24th Anniversary of The Americans With Disabilities Act

Blane Beckwith

Even though I greatly appreciate hearing the good words of President Barack Obama, on this day that we celebrate the 24th anniversary of The Americans with Disabilities Act, in some ways, his words ring a bit hollow for me. Over the years, this feeling of hollowness has become quite familiar to me.

It’s probably because, even though his intentions are good and the words he uses to express them, I also view the situation of being disabled in the United States from a far different perspective.  As a disabled person who has always had to struggle for just about everything that I have, I am able to recognize that this landmark piece of legislation isn’t any type of panacea or great cure for a problem.  Actually, I really don’t think it was ever intended to be any of those two things.

I have some mixed feelings about the 24th anniversary of The Americans with Disabilities Act.  Even though I’m very glad that it was passed, I also realize that there are a few flaws in this progressive piece of legislation.  When you look at every aspect of this great law, it’s not very hard to see that even though the spirit of the Americans with Disabilities Act was good and well-intentioned, it really doesn’t carry any significant weight behind it.  Basically, the Americans with Disabilities Act is a very good-looking law on paper, but it really doesn’t carry enough weight to make it the type of weapon that we disabled people need to protect ourselves from discrimination.

For the entire blog post:

Blane Beckwith describes himself on Twitter as a: “Disability rights activist, 57, lives in Berkeley, CA, founding member of N.California ADAPT, CUIDO (Communities United In Defense of Olmstead).”

Twitter: @4tires94703



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