Stop Humanitarian Award for LewisJan 10 10:06
If you agree with the following, please sign the petition. I signed it this morning.
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1. Mark Ploch | Jan 10 12:13
Some of you with disabilities, as I am one, just don't get it. I have had SMA since birth. Not a day goes by that I wish I didn't have SMA. Yet, not a day goes by that I let my SMA stop me from being a whole person. You have somehow viewed the MDA Telethon as a movement to eliminate people with disabilities. Do you also feel the cancer research should be stopped too? You say the telethon portrays the disabled as "half people". You allow others words to determine your worth. The cold hard facts are what Jerry Lewis talks about. Kids with MD are the ones who will die first. Fact. If I was given the option to walk tomorrow I would jump at it. Would I trade in my past 43 years, never. My disability has made me travel down a path by which I met great friends, found my wife, adopted my son and many other great things. I am what I am and I love me. But, if I could see a world where children didn't have to die or people use wheelchairs I'd take it in a heartbeat.
2. PhilosopherCrip | Jan 10 02:06
How do we explain this disconnect between the "saintly" Jerry who "provides an invaluable service to the disability community" and the bigot that tells chair using activists to not be seen in public if they don't want pity? Those PWds who defend him ought to ask themselves "who is the real Jerry Lewis?" It seems to me that a person's true ideologies and sentiments come closest to the surface when they are emotional and their guard is down. It's when we aren't controlling our words carefully that our truest beliefs are exposed. Also, there seems to be a very fine line between pity and disdain in general. At the end of the day, pity is a power relation. For it to exist, there must be a pitier and pitiful. This implicit power relation is what feels so "wrong" about how Jerry operates. We know it doesn't feel good to be dominated in this way. I wonder if it makes him feel powerful? What effect will an award have on this?
3. Berkster | Jan 10 03:11
Oh poor poor old Jerry Lewis. He is so old and so sick and fat and he can barely walk they might have to wheel him out in a wheelchair it makes me feel so sorry to see him in such an old and sickly enfeebled state if only I could rush to my phone and give him that Jean Hersholt award myself I would do it in a heartbeat, he is so sick and pathetic and fat and helpless, it makes me feel so sorry for him that I want to just cry my eyes out, if i looked like him I wouldn't even want to leave my house I know that I would just want to kill myself and now with all these able people with disabilities picking on him oh he is such a victim it just tears my heart apart, thinking about how much he has suffered, and how miserable he is, and how pathetic his life has become and how just thinking about that makes me feel so healthy and strong and superior to him it just breaks my heart I want to fill up the room with coins and tears and give money until my own little heart just breaks Thank God
4. Mike | Jan 10 03:55
These bitter hatemongers need to get over themselves. Their "protest" was a COLOSSAL FAILURE!!! Jerry got the oscar he so richly deserved. BRAVO JERRY LEWIS!!
5. lieke | Jan 10 06:42
nothing to add, this petition says it all!
6. Meredud | Jan 10 11:35
Rebecca said it best!
7. Mark Ploch | Jan 10 12:24
When will the disability community lightweights get off Jerry Lewis' back? He has done nothing, nothing, but to help raise money to help those in need. The services provided by the money he helps raise change lives. If you are feeling "pitied" blame yourself not Jerry Lewis. I'm a 43 years old man with SMA. I have been married for 18 years to my wife who I met at an MDA Summer Camp. I have a 5 year old son. I have a 19 year career in the computer industry. The sorriest soul in this world could never pity me or make me feel pitied. Those who feel Jerry Lewis is the reason for all their woes are sorrowful people. Stop blaming others for your discontent. Self esteem comes from thy self. If you have it, nobody can pity you ever. One more thing. The MDA telethon speaks the cold hard truth. MD kills the young and the weak. I've lost track as to how many of my MD friends have died over my 43 years. I just know I start counting with my brother's name. Good day.
8. qc | Jan 10 02:01
I've been an advocate for and worked with children and adults with disabilities for over 40 years. I remember in the 60'swhen the CP Telethon was held in NYC with Dennis James and I was there. Initially the MD telethon was aimed at boys with Duchennes and they were Jerry's kids cause no one else raised money for them. My first boys with Duchennes died before they got to high school. Jerry put the needs of all people with all kinds of dystrophies, myopathies and similar diseases out there and so much research has accomplished so much! True times have changed - thank goodness - but lets not forget who started the long climb upward. Thank you.
9. Mike in Albany | Jan 10 03:23
So far, the responders seem to be of the opinion that the end justifies the means. It does not. Corporations do not reserve 21 hours of television time once a year to tell you just how bad it is to live the life of a factory worker, and won't you please support those hard-working men and women who toil for their bosses. No, they take 30 seconds to tell you why their detergent is better than the others. MDA can craft a much better message around an ethos of access, freedom, and independence. Instead, they choose to employ a pathos of fear and loss. They state outright that a life in which a person is unable to walk is a bad life. Those of us living those lives reject that premise on its face. Advocates have asked Jerry to stop perpetuating those lies. He has refused repeatedly. If he really cared about the people he claims to serve, he would respect our wishes and honor our requests for change. He will not let us determine how we are portrayed. There is no justification for that.
10. garypresley | Jan 10 03:27
While I have some appreciation for Lewis' charity work, I have long wondered why he seems not to grow personally in his understanding that a life disabled can be a worthwhile and productive life. We are left to assume his demeaning comments in moments of anger and frustration -- and his refusal to listen to opposing viewpoints -- are the words of someone who does not believe we (meaning people with disabilities) should the same rights, the same respect, the same opportunities as any other person. For whatever progress in search of a cure or in treatment or in services the money Lewis has paid for, the man himself remains mired in the social attitudes prevalent 100 years ago. Gary www.garypresley.
11. disTHIS! | Jan 10 03:40
Hey, laaaaaady! Giving Lewis the Hersholt is a slap in the face to the people with disabilities he made a career out of mocking. Anyway you want to slice it, it is impossible to help someone at the expense of their dignity. Lewis shouldn't get a pass for his bigotry b/c he stays up all night once a year. Pity can never equal progress. To call a wheelchair user a "half person" to say that if you "don't want to pitied for being a cripple in a wheelchair, then stay in the house" is not humane by any measure. Sure, Lewis' entertaining antics may make some able-bodied people feel good about themselves for writing checks once a year but don't kid yourself into believing it has made any real progress for the disabled people Lewis claims to fight for. Lewis is a classic narcissist if there ever was one. He's too stubborn to change even if he knows he's wrong and too arrogant to ever admit it. This award only feeds the monster.
12. love26 | Jan 10 03:58
During slavery, it wasn't too hard to find slaves (usually "house slaves") who had no problem with the institution but in this case, we have a fool who made his reputation/career from his broad parody of "retards." Just as the above slaves had no problem with segregation or even lynching, so with apologists who agree that Jerry Lewis sucks but since he's bought wheel chairs for many kids, it's OK. Words hurt and those he uses are standouts for offensive: "half-person" becomes accepted and although we should probably just shrug it off, that's not really fair. Jerry sure doesn't take kindly to advice and finds perfectly normal responses to his "stay in your house" nonsense deserves ridicule. The biggest problem is that an award like this gives "humanitarian" a really flawed example. Love.
13. Rebecca | Jan 10 04:04
My son has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy and benefits from the MDA, but Jerry Lewis has pandered to America's lowest common denominator (which unfortunately makes him a great fundraiser), he has not risen above dirty and dated stereotypes. I'll keep sending my kid to MDA camp, I support the organization, but Jerry Lewis is no humanitarian.
14. sisterginny | Jan 10 04:07
My daughter was a "poster child" for the National Firefighters Association many years ago. She was chosen from her MDA Camp. The camp was a Jerry Lewis camp. She was treated like royalty for a couple of years as we traveled around being representatives for the MDA. Never were we treated like we were pitied, but people praised my daughter for being such a happy and positive role model. She went on graduate from 2 colleges and is a successful person with lots of friends. So, where do you see Jerry Lewis as harming her? or me? The only vacations we got from each other were when she went to those glorious MDA camps. She made so many friends there! The wonderful memories, the stories, the fun are still things she speaks about now that she is in her 40's. We love Jerry Lewis. How dare you take that award from Jerry Lewis? You are rude. He has given so much of his time and love to you. He is a nut, but that's how he get's people to laugh. Grow up, find something better to do.
15. JumpinJack | Jan 10 04:17
I realize that the blogger posted this because she wants to be sensational, not because it's valid. Before we criticize Mr. Lewis, we each should look in the mirror and ask, "Have I served such an iconic role as Jerry Lewis toward bettering the lives of those with disabilities?" In the blogger's case, I'm afraid she might be self-defeated by the answer. Jerry Lewis has dared to improve the lives of others well beyond himself, and it's embarrassing that those of us with disabilities, who merely write to feed our own egos, would try to tear him down.
16. smmich8 | Jan 10 05:18
I couldn't agree more.
17. ADAPTMT | Jan 10 05:23
Any fondness I had for Lewis when he teamed with Dean Martin went right out the door when he started to exploit stereotypes about pwd in the MDA telethon. The telethon may have raised money, but it hasn't raised the esteem in which people with disabilities are held. Using disabled children as "cute puppy" props to solicit donations, while simultaneously ridiculing and verbally attacking adults with disabilities is discrimination of the worst kind, and shows his total lack of respect for the disability community. Lewis' efforts have seemed much more geared to keep him in the public eye, and allow him a performance venue since there has been little if any demand for his services otherwise. I am appalled at the ignorance about disability and respect in a Hollywood that would bestow this award on the likes of Lewis.
18. Mark Ploch | Jan 10 10:40
I have know many people that have slammed Jerry Lewis and then call for MDA assistance the day after the telethon. All hypocrites. If you so hate the way an organization raises money, then don't line up for handouts you ungrateful pigs. I keep hearing the word pity come up. You are pitiful ones. You live lives that are less than what you feel you deserve and blame all your problems on Jerry Lewis. If you're not happy with you life just look in the mirror before you blame anyone else. You all make me sick.
19. Spokes | Jan 10 11:33
To Wheelie42, You say you resent it when anyone "implies" that you are helpless. Jerry Lewis uses "express" language to declare that "his kids" ARE helpless and preys on pity to raise money. Jerry Lewis should be held to the same standard you say you hold everyone else. It's not that Jerry Lewis doesn't raise money. It's the way he does it and the fact that, in his own words, doesn't care how people who have a disability feel about it. Mr. Lewis said, "F**k them." real humanitarian. At least I can say that my integrity and disability pride is not for sale.
20. Wheelie42 | Jan 10 11:45
First, let me assure everyone that I'm quite offended when someone refers to me as a "cripple" or anything like it. I'm a T6 para with full control of my arms and fingers and I pretty much take care of all of my own needs. I'm grateful that I'm not helpless and I resent it when anyone implies that I am. But I see this petition as throwing out the baby with the bathwater. Has Mr. Lewis said some things that offend us from time to time? Definitely! Would we prefer that there be no telethon and no funds raised? Of course not! Jerry Lewis donates his time as do those who appear on the telethon with him, plus the network donates the air time as well. Over the years the telethon has raised millions. Let's not cut off our nose to spite our face! Despite his rough points Jerry Lewis has provided an invaluable service to the disabled community for many years and richly deserves this award.
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