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Disability Essay AP

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Introduction

Disability: No Longer a Hindrance Disability is a term that, in today's society, immediately conjures up negatively connotated images in one's mind; stereotypes of disabled people are that they are mentally challenged, incapable, and should be pitied. In this respect, society is ignorant. Most of the disabled beings are just normal people who have either been the victims of traumatic accidents or the victims of incapacitating diseases. These are normal people who are just physically handicapped, yet continue to see society turn its back on them. Nancy Mairs, Andre Dubus, and Harriet Johnson are three disabled authors who have experienced the prejudice of society. Through their essays, they convey a powerful message to society that the disabled are perfectly capable of living and expressing themselves as normal people. Mairs, Dubus, and Johnson all have differing views on the disabled, but they all use similar resources of language to communicate their message; their use of life experiences, exemplification, and emotional tones persuasively express their viewpoints to the reader. Nancy Mairs is crippled with multiple sclerosis, yet knows she is as fully capable as another, non-disabled human being. ...read more.

Middle

Dubus expresses what a cripple cannot do; the harsh, physically and emotionally demanding life of a disabled person is a reality. He does this not only to show how hard it is for cripples to live, but also to show why he now has some resentment towards ordinary people. This is expressed when he talks about the rage he felt at a reporter and editor who wrote an article about a quadriplegic; ordinary people will sympathize with the disabled, but will never truly understand the physical and emotional pain. I agree with Dubus because ordinary people cannot imagine the pain of of being a cripple. Unlike Mairs, Dubus does not try to make himself seem like an ordinary person. He knows he will always be different, and that his life will be full of challenges. Whereas Mairs uses numerous examples to make herself seem like a normal person, Dubus clearly accepts he will never again be normal in society. He even says, "I sing of those who cannot...what we need is not the sounds of horns rising to the sky but the steady beat of the brass drum." ...read more.

Conclusion

The use of dialogue makes her argument more interesting to read. In addition, Johnson's varied use of syntax with long and short sentences to get her point across is effective. Having a disability can be a challenge and it can be hard to deal with mainly because of the reaction of society towards disabled people. However, like all three of the authors, I believe that a disability should never limit the success in peoples' lives in any way. They should be able to live life to the fullest within their capabilities. A famous example of a person who succeeded despite his severe disability is Stephen Hawkins, who became a world renowned physicist despite being wheelchair bound. This type of success reinforces Johnson's message that disabled people can lead full lives and should not be considered a burden. I think Dubus is right in assuming non-disabled people don't truly understand the hardships disabled people go through. Though disabled people face many barriers, especially poor acceptance by society, a desire to overcome the odds against them helps many disabled persons to be very successful. This demonstrates that disability is not the most important component of a person's character. ...read more.

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