By Gretschman for Occupy World Writes
The human spirit is an amazing thing.
It allows us to be malleable , yet strong in will and purpose.
I grew up in a household headed by a World War II veteran who had a service-connected disability that was rated at 80%, or in other words, he was considered to have the “ability” to work, play and live at 20% of the capacity of an “able bodied” person.
In fact, he had two service-related disabilities, one of which carried the 80% rating and the other of which carried a 40% rating.
But disabilities are not considered ‘cumulative” in the eyes of those who sit in judgement of these matters. You are given the ‘highest” of your ratings and told to go about your life.
it didn’t seem odd to us growing up that dad had scars on his leg and his back. it didn’t seem odd to us that you could watch dad’s heart beat through the t-shirt he wore to cover the gaping hole in his chest. it didn’t seem odd that dad’s neck was skewed towards one shoulder and away from the other.
It wasn’t until we were old enough to understand the answers to the questions about why his body looked like it did that we were able to understand that it was his own fortitude and human spirit that had allowed him to survive the surgeries that gave him his altered appearance and the will to deal with the daily pain to be able to “go about his life”.
As an adult, i live in a household where my spouse lives with the consequences of a traumatic brain injury. She, like my father, uses her fortitude and human spirit to get by day to day and “go about her life”
From my father and my spouse I have learned that “disability” does not equal “unable,” ‘disability’ DOES equal “different abilities.”
No matter what our abilities are, we all deserve to be treated equally. We all deserve the right to be treated fairly. We all deserve the right to be treated justly.
it is my beliefs in these tenants that had led me to the Occupy movement and to stand in solidarity with those who fight for the 99%.
It is this amazing human spirit that the 1% cannot take away, no matter what they try to take from the 99% to leave us in perpetual servitude to their whims and desires. This human spirit is what will drive us to stand up in the face of tyranny and oppression. This human spirit is what will drive us to fight to make this world better for our children, our children’s children and the generations that will follow them.
Occupied and in Solidarity,