Thursday, October 19, 2017
If I wasn’t already crippled and had to choose to become crippled either by amputation or spinal cord injury, I’d choose amputation any old day. It must be a helluva lot easier becoming an amputee than a quad because the media doesn’t put as much shit in your head.
If you’re a quad, the media has put forth lots of role models for you to follow. And that’s the problem. Remember when Christopher Reeve fell off his horse? Or how about all those people who get spinal cord injuries playing football? There are always always always media stories about how these courageous people are determined to overcome their injuries and return to their glory days of uncrippledness.
So if I was freshly crippled due to spinal cord injury, I’d be inclined to think that my primary obligation as a cripple to myself and everybody else was to become uncrippled as soon as humanly possible. Anything less is a dereliction of duty. So I’d be inclined to spend a thousand hours a week working out in a physical therapy gym in a quest to fulfill my obligation to society.
I’m glad Stephen Hawking didn’t feel that way. It would be pretty fucked up if he spent all day sitting motionless in a physical therapy gym instead of pondering the universe and shit. I’m glad we don’t see him being interviewed on television with the robot voice of his talking box saying, “I will not rest until I can talk again.”
But anyway, suppose when Christopher Reeve fell off his horse he ended up having to have his leg cut off instead. That would have caused the media’s head to explode. They wouldn’t have had a clue what to do with that. Because if Christopher Reeve vowed to do whatever it takes to grow his leg back, even the media would’ve thought that was silly. We all would’ve just had to accept the new normal of a one-legged Christopher Reeve. You can’t spin it any other way.
That’s why I bet it’s a helluva lot easier to become crippled via amputation. You’re allowed to advance immediately to the stage of accepting your new crippled self and figuring out what it all means. You can get on with it. There aren’t any role models in the media fucking everything up.
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