To be invisible and voiceless is a reality for many—especially for minorities; including those with disabilities. This may be uncomfortable to think about or consider. But if you’re in the majority with inherent privilege it can be easy to overlook the struggles others have. Living in a predominant Western society comes with certain assumptions: whether you were born here or migrated to this culture shouldn’t you know what to do, how to live, or say or behave in ways that are “appropriate or correct?” If not, why don’t you?
Voicelessness can potentially affect one’s ability to effectively state what they truly need. It can deter from a person’s confidence to make decisions they want to make but don’t feel they can. How are you helping or being a deterrent towards someone being able to speak “their” truth? Clearly, there are exceptions—no it’s NOT ok to slander folks or engage in microinsults. Yes, we may not necessarily agree with that person but that’s not the point, is it? As one who has experienced invisibility and voicelessness, I can appreciate true “freedom” of speech when it is given space.