Sunday, June 26, 2011

FDR Memorial

This week was fun, but pretty low-key for me. At my internship I spent almost all of the week doing preliminary research for an upcoming project. I also attended a few meetings with members of the staff which was nice and allowed me to get out of the office. Outside of work, I had a relaxing, yet fun week. I went to dinner one night with several other interns and it was nice to be able to socialize with everyone since we work so much. I also spent quite a lot of time this week with my personal care attendant since she was getting ready to leave after being here for the first half of the summer.

This weekend, AAPD took us on a tour of the FDR Memorial. FDR is one of my favorite presidents, although I am legally required to think Lincoln is the best since I am from Illinois ;) I had seen the memorial on previous visits and knew of the struggle to have FDR’s disability status included, but it was interesting to hear a first-person account from Jim Dickson about everything the disability community had to do in order to have a statue of FDR in a wheelchair included. It is incomprehensible to me that the planners of the memorial tried to purposely distort history and cover up the fact that FDR was a wheelchair user (as if being in a wheelchair was some negative attribute that needed to be hidden). As a friend of mine said today, it’s as if the built the MLK Jr. Memorial and took out all references to him being African-American. I am glad the statue of FDR in a wheelchair was eventually included as it is my favorite part of the whole memorial.

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