“Ableism is not a list of bad words. Language is one tool of an oppressive system. Being aware of language—for those of us who have the privilege of being able to change our language—can help us understand how pervasive ableism is. Ableism is systematic, institutional devaluing of bodies and minds deemed deviant, abnormal, defective, subhuman, less than. Ableism is violence.” —Lydia X.Z. Brown
Excerpt from: Violence in Language: Circling Back to Linguistic Ableism by Lydia X.Z. Brown*
a) is part of an entire system of ableism, and doesn’t exist simply by itself,
b) signifies how deeply ableist our societies and cultures are by how common and accepted ableism is in language,
c) reinforces and perpetuates ableist social norms that normalize violence and abuse against disabled people,
d) actively creates less safe spaces by re-traumatizing disabled people, and
e) uses ableism to perpetuate other forms of oppression.
*Read the entire article at https://bit.ly/3hCtYvJ (2014). For more from Lydia X.Z. Brown including a list of generally ableist terms and phrases visit https://bit.ly/3WqpUh6 (updated 2022).