With Race and Disability, What is Fair and Right, is Fair and Right for All

  • A
  • A
  • A

Friday, February 28, 2014

National Federation of the Blind (NFB)

By Anil Lewis

I rarely take time to watch television, but during Black History Month, I immersed myself in black films. As a member of a family led by a widowed mother who supported her family of four children primarily as a domestic worker, I watched The Help and was reminded how much my mom’s subsequent job as a clerk at the United States Post Office drastically changed our lives. One of the few memories of my father is that he served in the United States Army, so I watched A Soldier’s Story, and I wondered which, if either, of the characters was most like my dad. I watched them old and new, from A Cabin in the Sky to 12 Years a Slave, acknowledging that the opportunities afforded the actors of the former were forged out of the struggle depicted by the characters in the latter. I am reminded of how far we have come and how far we still have to go. I try not to take the sacrifices of Freedom Fighters (civil rights activists) for granted as I enjoy freedoms and opportunities denied others based simply on the characteristic of race. I understand in a real way that whether it is race, gender, or any other characteristic used to make one group of people seem less valuable than another, we are all limited when we tolerate discrimination. The systemic change we need to effect in order to eliminate discrimination pivots on the small, but poignant epiphany expressed in the movie 12 Years a Slave, “What is fair and right, is fair and right for all.”

You can read the entire blog here: https://nfb.org/blog/vonb-blog/race-and-disability-what-fair-and-right-fair-and-right-all