Happy To See It
I am so happy to have found this article [“Here comes the Bride ... and Bride,” February 2013]. I am a gay male wheelchair user, and I find that lengthy issue title [“Sex, Wheels and Relationships”] becomes the punch line of many jokes, many being my own. Why? Because sexuality and disability is never discussed, and people sometimes require a little humor just to be exposed to diversity.
I, for one, have yet to understand how to get into the dating world, partially because the West Hollywood gay community is extremely superficial, and also in part because of my fears of dating as a disabled person. I would love to see this discussion go further, with variables like groom and groom and gay versus lesbian disabled dating differences. I commend you for just tackling dating, gay or straight, with a disability in general.
I perceive a disturbing trend with your magazine towards integrating the homosexual lifestyle into as many topics as you please. What does being straight or gay have to do with my disability? I feel that you are taking unfair advantage of a captive audience, namely, your subscribers — of which I have been one for years. Your February issue did not have two women on the cover, it had two lesbian women on the cover. Why do you think their sexual orientation is important to your readers?
I was a conservative Christian before I broke my neck, and I am still a conservative Christian. Simply because I am in a wheelchair does not mean I have changed my opinions on topics like homosexuality and abortion. Your last piece in that same issue was from The Huffington Post — the poster child left wing liberal’s news source. I would never allow that publication into my home, and yet it piggybacked in via your magazine! What are your standards when it comes to what is allowable in your magazine? Will you be quoting Al Jazeera next? Since my young children check the mail, do I need to fear what they might see next on the cover of your magazine?
I have never seen a news piece that says most of Americans support homosexuality. Since disability does not discriminate, I can only assume that most disabled people do not support homosexuality. When those disabled folks and their parents subscribe to your magazine, do these statistics suddenly change? Less than 10 percent of Americans identify as gay or lesbian. Have you found that this number is much higher among your subscribers? I seriously doubt it, so why is the homosexual topic addressed so often in New Mobility?
There was a time that I looked forward to your publication with its wonderful information about my disability. Now, I wonder how many articles I will be skipping and advertisements I will not be seeing while avoiding the homosexual topic. At what point will I be canceling my subscription altogether?
I get it, some people are gay. But don’t worry, mass media is doing a fabulous job of inserting the homosexual agenda in virtually every program that I watch on TV. Mass media has “gay” covered, so New Mobility should stick to the topic of disability. Being straight or gay has nothing to do with my disability!
Greg (Last name withheld)
EDITOR: See this month’s Bully Pulpit for New Mobility’s response to this letter.
I am so pleased that New Mobility has published a cover story that, in essence, advocates for the rights of sexual minority people with disabilities [“Here Comes the Bride ... and Bride,” February 2013]. And, the story was incredibly interesting and well-written!
How About a Survey?
I’d be curious to see a survey with an outcome to see what women think they know about men with SCI. I’m 54 and used to date, but the older I get, the harder it is to meet single women. I’m interested in a long-term relationship, but after six months on a dating service, all I received were attempts to defraud me out of my money. I’m financially stable and own my own home and I’m in good health.
St. Paul, Minnesota
I thought you may be interested in a new free learning tool for wheelchair tennis that has been developed in a video tutorial format by my coach, Rich Berman, and myself. It can be found at www.letsrollwheelchairtennis.com. If you could promote it in any way, it would be appreciated. We are trying to get the word out as much as possible.
If enough states implement Community First Choice and show positive results, both in services and finances, we can push the Community Choice Act 2.0 through in Washington, D.C. [“The Obama Administration and Community Choice,” News analysis, February 2013]. Everyone needs to do their part. More states are embracing CFC every month. In Colorado we are working to implement CFC at the same time as we simplify and consolidate our 13 Medicaid waivers.
Porgy Not Arrogant
Porgy is not “punished for his hubris.” That is utterly ridiculous. What the article [“Porgy’s Long Journey,” October 2012] conveniently fails to mention is that Porgy goes to jail for not identifying the body of Bess’s former lover, Crown, a murderer whom Porgy has killed. While Porgy is in jail, Bess succumbs to the temptation to use “happy dust” (cocaine) and runs off to New York with the dope pusher, Sportin’ Life. When Porgy is freed from jail after a week, he finds that Bess is gone and leaves for New York to bring her back. Not once is he arrogant about this. He changes from being bitter (in the first act he has this line — “When God make cripple, He mean him to be lonely” — to being completely fulfilled and happy because of his love for Bess. That is not hubris.
Albert Sanchez Moreno
Excellent article with several challenging issues brought to the front [“Porgy’s Long Journey”]. Not everyone will agree with this interpretation, obviously. I saw Porgy and Bess last year at Opera Delaware in Wilmington. Porgy was on a push board from start to curtain call! If the show needs an update for some reason, I think the only appropriate substitute should be a wheelchair, and a beat-up one at that.