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Tag: Disability

Using A Cane With An Invisible Disability

Posted in Creative Commons, and Life

I thought I’d write for a moment about what it means to use a cane as a person with an invisible disability (fibromyalgia).

Invisible disabilities are life-altering health conditions which are nonetheless not always visible to a normal observer. Even a trained medical professional might miss them under casual observation. Fibromyalgia is a debilitating, and poorly understood condition. It combines chronic pain with other symptoms like sleep disturbance and severe fatigue.

I don’t use a cane every day, which can contribute to confusion from people who don’t understand how disabilities can work. I might seem “able bodied” one day, but the next (or even later the same day) be hobbling around in pain.

Quoted In Bitch: Cannabis, Chronic Illness & Unsolicited Medical Advice

Posted in Journalism, and Ministry of Hemp

I was quoted by journalist s.e. smith in a recent article in Bitch on cannabis and unsolicited advice for the disabled and chronically ill.

As editor of Ministry of Hemp, obviously I’m a believer in the benefits of hemp.  But I’m also not a fan of giving sick and disabled people unsolicited medical advice. And even though cannabis in several forms is helpful to my disability (fibromyalgia), it’s not a cure.

I’ve tried it, I know how it helps, and I don’t need other folks telling me what to do unless I ask.

VIDEO: Why Public Education Matters For Disabled Students In Texas

Posted in Austin, Creative Commons, Journalism, and Video

In this short video, recorded July 18 2017, Lisa Flores explains why public education matters for disabled students in Texas.

Resistance is ongoing down at the Texas Capitol, and the donations of my patrons are helping me to cover it. Look for more soon!

Using Able-Bodied Privilege To Defend Healthcare & Human Rights

Posted in Act Out!, Creative Commons, Journalism, and Video

They’re loud, they’re fierce, and they’d rather risk death than see their — and your — health care get cut.

You’ve probably seen stories about protesters torn from their wheelchairs as they shut down Senators’ offices, resisting the devastating new Republican “health care” plan that would push even more people into ill health, bankruptcy and death.

To give you a rough idea of how many — there are currently about 29 million people uninsured under the ACA — although many who are insured still suffer from the economic burdens of trying to stay alive. That number may drop a bit by 2026 but under the proposed AHCA, revised or not, more than 50 million people would be uninsured. And we’ll get to what third option would leave no one insured but first, let’s circle back to these protests.

Organized under the hashtag #ADAPTandResist, they have spread across the U.S., from Capitol Hill to legislator’s offices around the country. We’ve all been justifiably horrified to see people defending their right to health care literally dragged to jail, and sometimes bloodied in the process. But as with anyone who places their body squarely in the path of the powers that be, these protesters don’t want our pity, they want our solidarity — because this is a struggle we should all take part in.

They also aren’t new to this struggle either — actually, disability rights advocates from groups like ADAPT are some of the fiercest, and most effective activists around, and they’ve literally transformed the world you live in, to everyone’s benefit.

Kit O’Connell Guest Hosts @WeAreDisabled, Disability Twitter Account

Posted in Journalism

From May 18 to May 25, I hosted the Twitter account @WeAreDisabled. Similar to other group accounts like @sweden or @realscientists, this Twitter passes from person to person with the only common theme being disability.

The account admins created a Storify of all my tweets, but below I’ll link to my main threads so you can click through and read them if you like.

First I introduced myself:

Wheelchair Sports Camp On SXSW, Music Festival Accessibility, & Occupy

Posted in Austin, Journalism, Occupy Wall Street, and SXSW

Wheelchair Sports Camp is one of the better-known bands in the “krip hop” movement, led by Kalyn, a self-described “MC/beat-maker/activist/educator/shit-talker.” Their music combines electronic sounds and hip-hop beats with live jazz instrumentation, and, of course, Kalyn’s rapid-fire words. Sometimes funny, sometimes experimental, I’ve enjoyed every performance I’ve seen since I first caught them in 2012 at Occupy Austin’s ambitious “Occupy SXSW” mini-festival.

After seeing Kalyn perform again at this year’s SXSW, I asked her to answer a few questions by email.

I’m looking forward to their upcoming album, “No Big Deal,” which Kalyn mentions below.