Friday, November 15, 2019

Endeavors and Media Coverage

There is a huge difference between how able-bodied people who start an organization or program for disabled people are covered in media, and how cripples are covered for starting something similar for our community.  Ableds are seen as our selfless saviors, bringing culture/comfort/access to the pitiful "other".  Our start-ups get significantly less coverage... unless it's inspoporn.

Since our community gets less media attention (and a more skewed focus) when our own projects come to light, it can impact our chances to secure funding.  Newspaper articles can be a great way draw the attention of potential donors, especially on a local level.  Plus, disabled people might not know about opportunities available to them because of the lack of reporting.

The amount of gimp-led organizations and projects scraping by on small, crowd-funded efforts versus able-bodied ones getting large grants and corporate donations is huge.  Announcements of funding and partnerships abound!  Of course,  ableists will say we're too ignorant or lazy to properly get funded, but people who aren't bigots see a different story.

How our financial needs or efforts are narrated varies, too.  Eight different articles for able-bodied ventures (since January) have entire paragraphs on funding assistance!  Every one but two I've seen for our community mentioned it in the last line of the piece (if at all).  Maybe different periodicals have different policies on money.  Maybe a lot of the projects started by us already have all the backing they need... doubtful.
I'm not saying programs and things started by able-bodied people for our community don't help us or deserve the money and promotion they need to thrive, but the difference in the amount of coverage, the slant of the articles, and the disparity in attention to our financial needs is all bullshit.  An endeavor isn't less worthy because it's run by a wheelchair-user.  Journalists need to stop acting like it.

No comments:

Post a Comment