Episode 23: Initiating The Uninitiated

The updated version of the International Symbol of Access, aka the "wheelchair symbol". It's a profile of a stick figure man in a manual wheelchair pushing himself while leaning forward.

All too often, we struggle with the question: how can we advocate successfully when the people that need to know better are the ones hardest to reach? comes up. We try to tackle this in our latest episode. There’s a ton to unpack here. A transcript for this episode can be found here. This transcript is due to our generous supporters on Patreon. Thank you.

Where’s the line? Ignorance versus Willful Ignorance

One of the issues we talk about in this episode is ignorance. More to the point, we talk about the difference between ignorance and willful ignorance. Recognizing the difference is fundamental to understanding this episode. However, they are often used interchangeably. While the difference between them should be somewhat obvious, the question that still remains is: When does ignorance become willful? Where is that line?

How can we “initiate the uninitiated”?

This is the crux of our conversation. When confronting someone ignorant of disability issues about disability issues, how much slack should we give the person? Too much and they may assume they’re always in the right with no room to improve; too little and we come across as mean-spirited and rude. Luckily, we’ve come up with a list to ensure everyone walks (or rolls!) away happy.

Show me that list, yo.
  1. Realize this is all subjective. Every disabled person has a different experience in their day-to-day life, so keep that in mind!
  2. Ask a lot of questions and don’t worry about offending or how you’re coming across until you’re done asking. Use common sense, it’ll get you a long way!
  3. Listen to the feedback about how you asked your question and how phrasing it better would have helped.
  4. Most importantly, listen to the answers!
That is the greatest list of all time. Is the episode this good?

Probably not, but if you’ve listened or read this far you’ll enjoy it!

Notes from this episode: “Almost Politically Correct Redneck” memes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *