Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Free At Last!

Time for a bit of closure around my experience on LeftyBlogs Oregon. Coming from a place of caring about the civil and human rights of people with developmental disabilities, I thought that joining in with a blog that deals with those issues would be welcomed. It's not something generally written about. There are probably more blogs on stamp collecting.

I was wrong about that and a few other things. Believing that people who call themselves "progressive" share those beliefs is one thing I was wrong about. I found that although many times I would have 30 or 40 clicks on a post about disability related issues, there was rarely a comment from these "lefties". They just didn't see fit to weigh in. I don't know why. Maybe they believe that "leaving the whole disability thing to the experts" is good enough.

Occasionally, I'd write about this silence phenomena, thinking it might wake someone up, but it didn't. I simply said to myself, "Fuck it. At least they're reading stuff that might educate them". So I kept putting posts out there anyway.

On March 21st that all changed. As I scrolled along LeftyBlogs Oregon, I came upon a post titled "Retards Are Mad", and clicked on it out of curiosity. The langugage used to describe this writers view of people with developmental disabilities was cruel hate speech. Rather than dignifying the post with a comment on their blog, I posted about it on mine. Between the 2 posts there were at least 60 clicks from readers of LeftyBlogs without a single comment. At that point I figured these folks don't give a damn about folks with developmental disabilities, and on March 25th began my struggle for release.

Since then I've been in email contact with Kari Chisolm, the guy who set up the LeftyBlogs system. Today he wrote me with an excuse about how no one is responsible for what gets posted, and that I shouldn't be angry with the people who read and write LeftyBlogs. Though he agrees the "Retards" post was "offensive"and my "reaction to Vorpal's obnoxious post is quite reasonable.", has he done anything beyond reassuring me? What about HIS reaction? What about the clicks? Somebody was reading these posts.

Now, I'm off LeftyBlogs Oregon. There's still plenty of folks who read what I write, including a handfull who actually care.

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