Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Myth of Equality

KERRY O'BRIEN, PRESENTER: For more than 30 years, children with disabilities have been integrated into the education mainstream as specialist schools have closed their doors. It mirrors a change in community attitudes, but hasn't always been embraced by parents of disabled children. Even with one-on-one help in the classroom and visiting specialist teachers, some parents say mainstream schools aren't meeting their children's needs and can leave them socially isolated.

In Victoria, a number of parents devastated by the closure of the state's only school for the blind say the pendulum on integration has swung too far and ideology is denying them the right to choose. Lisa Whitehead reports.

A lot of modern social policy riles me. For example, closing down schools for blind children and expecting them to learn in an ordinary school. In fact there are countless of examples of misguided public policy such as closing down of mental asylums and turning patients out into the community.
At the core of all these follies is a mindset that is as simple as it is deluded. That is the idea that we are all equal. A communist sourced idea if you will.
If we begin with the premise that we are all equal then it follows that blind and disabled people are equal to the rest of the community. They are not handicapped, just different. In fact the same goes for mentally insane people. Doesn't it follow that we should remove any special facilities for blind or disabled people and treat them equally? In fact, let's take away the special parking spots for disabled people. How is that any different from closing down schools for blind children?

But this universal equality doesn't end here. It can be applied anywhere and everywhere.
For example:
  • Where do you think the concept of multi-culturalism comes from? The idea that all cultures are equal? 
  • How about all religions are equal? Yes Islam is equal to Buddhism and Christianity...
  • Consider the claim by Creationists that Intelligent Design is a scientific theory and therefore should be considered equally plausible to Darwinism. Labeling Intelligent Design as science(even though this is false) makes it the equal of all other scientific disciplines.
  • The rise of the Feminist movement came about because of a perception that women were not being treated equally to men even though they were equal.
  • How about the idea that gays and straights are equal. It follows that a gay couple can be equally good parents as a m/f couple. Or so some people believe or choose to disbelieve.
  • Animals have equal rights to humans and hence animal liberation.
Let's not get carried away with the myth of equality.
Further reading,  Myth of Equality" article by Leon Felkins.

1 comment:

Jeannie said...

People are never equal. Some have greater intelligence, physical strength, finances, attractiveness - and having one tends to help you get the rest. On the other hand, having more does not make you better and that's where people get confused.

People who care for people with special needs seem never to be satisfied. I suppose dissatisfaction might come with the job if their loved ones can't be fixed. First they wanted special schools but then those schools isolated them and they wanted to be part of the regular school but this costs a lot of money and you can't make people hang out with people they are uncomfortable with. And disabilities can make people uncomfortable - especially kids who are doing everything in their power to fit in themselves. So the special needs kid is now isolated in a different way - and doesn't even have the companionship of others with difficulties. Not to be glib but it sucks to be different if that difference is not in a "good" way.
Back when I was in primary school, there was a wing for "special" students only they called it "remedial" then. They were part of the school but had each other. I think at least some students learned at minimum not to stare but some were still cruel. That's people.

Women are not equal to men. Nor are men equal to women.