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Rooted in Rights

Recent Posts

Don’t Use “Functioning Labels” to Victim-Blame Me

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Content note: this post discusses sexual abuse and rape. When people find out that I survived a rape and my assailant was a woman, their tone often immediately shifts from sympathy to disbelief or confusion: “How could a woman rape you?” Besides the fact that this question erases sexual violence in the LGBTQIA+ community, it’s

Autistic People are Taking Back Autism “Awareness.” It’s About Acceptance.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

As a joke a few years ago, I posted on April 2 (widely celebrated as World Autism Awareness Day), “I think you’re all aware, but I’m autistic.” I was sick of seeing photos of non-autistic people on fundraising walks for autism awareness and explaining why many autistic people wouldn’t want a cure even if one

Disabled People Can Sexually Harass and Assault People, Too

Thursday, April 12, 2018

There are many reasons as to why women who have experienced sexual harassment or abuse do not come forward straightaway, including the fear of not being believed. Such disbelief often stems from the perpetrator not matching stereotypes of the sort of person who would commit such an act, i.e. the perpetrator being disabled. This is

What’s the Point of Trigger Warnings?

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Trigger warnings are an incredibly contentious subject, from op-eds insisting that they’re ruining higher education to complaints that they’re wildly overused to a high profile author mocking them in the title of a book. But the conversation about trigger warnings that takes place outside of disability spaces often leaves something out. Are they not, at

My Fight for Independence is a Fight for Disability Rights

Friday, April 6, 2018

For the first two decades of my life, I was never alone. Growing up with vocal cord paralysis, I was always accompanied by either my nurses, my parents, or another adult who was trained to work with kids who wear tracheostomy (trach) tubes to help them breathe, like me. I constantly struggled with the desire

I Needed My Caregiver to Keep Me Alive. She Exploited That Power.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Content note: this post discusses the concept of caregiver abuse. I have a fear of becoming a statistic. I made it through four years of college without being 1 in 3 disabled women sexually assaulted on college campuses, a number recently reported by the National Council on Disability in their report, “Not on the Radar.”

Judi Chamberlin: Mad Pride and the Fight Against Institutionalizing Women

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Content note: this post discusses miscarriage, mental illness, and forced institutionalization. It’s Women’s History Month, which makes it an excellent time to talk about the fact that women’s history and disability history overlap significantly; notable women from Harriet Tubman to Helen Keller have been disabled trailblazers for social justice, including women’s rights. To do so,

#DeleteFacebook? It’s Not that Simple for Disabled People

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Facebook has been in the news lately as details have come out about privacy breaches. An organization called Cambridge Analytica is accused of harvesting and using personal data from Facebook to direct political messages to specific users. Rightfully outraged by these privacy violations, many former Facebook users are deleting their accounts and a #deletefacebook campaign

When Do I Get to Say “Me, Too?”

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

I love the word “disabled” because it speaks to the heart of the matter: my ability to move freely through life is hampered. As an “invisibly” disabled, white-passing, biracial, queer femme, I wear my privileges like armor. Pretty masks queer. Class privilege obscures immigrant identity. My intact physical body hides a multiply broken, neuro-atypical brain