It’s very exciting that someone finally found and revealed some video footage of President Franklin D Roosevelt in a wheelchair. Even though you can’t actually see the wheelchair in this old film clip, it is very obvious that the president is being wheeled across the deck of a ship.
It’s too bad that one of the greatest presidents in US history was forced to bow down to the stigma that is so unfairly attached to having a disability. I also think it’s very sad that a man who was probably the most powerful person in the world at that time, could not feel free to be open about who and what he was; a proud person with a disability.
It really says a lot of negative things about a society that cannot, and will not, recognize a person’s goodness and strength, just because they use a wheelchair.Â Considering that President Roosevelt was able to extricate this country from the worst depression in its history, and courageously lead it through the bloodiest war in the history of the world, he proved his great strength and intelligence in a multitude of ways.Â Did his disability affect any of that?Â Did it make any difference about how great of a man he was?Â Certainly not!
Just think about how much better we all might be if President Roosevelt would have been more open to the public about his disability.Â Think about how our society would truly be a “Great Society“, as President Roosevelt referred to it, if the marginalization of this country’s largest minority didn’t exist.
Maybe those of us who are involved in the disability rights movement wouldn’t have to work so hard to be recognized as equal people deserving of the same equal rights as able-bodied people. Maybe some of us would have had more time for
real living than for doing battle with an ablest society that seemingly refuses to recognize us.
Perhaps, if President Roosevelt could have been more open about who he was, maybe there wouldn’t even be a need for a disability rights movement.Â Of course, for those of us who truly love the battle, gain great strength and empowerment from it, and love winning it, might be left with nothing to do other than to enjoy the day.