Top Ten Reasons Why the Blind Can't Get Ahead

10. The public still thinks blindness is a great misfortune.

9. Vocational and orientation-mobility training are horrifically funded—that is, its left up to the states and nonprofit organizations when it should be offered by every eye clinic and billable to Medicare.

8. Blindness advocacy organizations fight amongst themselves like the characters in “Gulliver’s Travels” who start a civil war over the question of which end of the hard boiled egg to break first—the big or small one.

7. Just try using a cell phone or a Macintosh pc. I mean “off the shelf” “ready to go”—just try it.

6. Just try using a PC “off the shelf” without expensive “third party software”—just try.

5. Just try going to a movie and asking for audio description.

4. TV can’t be watched—probably a good thing.

3. Bank machines; vending machines; signage; endless roulette of incomprehensions…

2. Blind students drop out of college at higher rates than other disabled student groups. See above problems.

1. Access to printed or electronic information remains highly provisional. Thank you Google; Microsoft; Apple; Adobe; Mozilla; Sun Micro Systems; and all the rest of you bongo whacking Information Technology designers who continue to think of the blind as “add on” people. In Disability Studies we call this principle “the defective people industry”.

Why am I posting such a riposte on Memorial Day?  Ask the Blinded Veterans of America.

S.K.

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