Sunday, 19 August 2012

14 comments:

Laura said...

I am so excited for the Paralympics, the C4 advert is really good and hopefully people will get behind our GB team as they did with the Olympics!

Maddy said...

Thank you for writing about this. As a disabled person I am so excited about the paralympics and I've been disappointed that I seem to be in the minority there are people in it who have the same condition as me and while they may be more able than me they give me hope. I've heard people say "what's the point in seeing who's the best cripple" or "I want to see the best not the worst" and I just want to say this. To a disabled person such as myself, getting out of bed can be a challenge. to get to compete in these games they have to use all the strenght that the olympians used and more because things are harder for us than them. So everyone should get excited about the paralympics because regardless your thoughts about disability the paralympics celebrate inner strength and skill of the like which isn't seen anywhere else. I hope that came across ok!

Yu said...

I finally got tickets to the Paralympics and I'm so excited! As much as I am amazed at the Olympians, sometimes, I am more amazed at Paralympians. A lot of them have stories that most people wouldn't be able to overcome, never mind become a Paralympian for!

Parveen said...

Great, great post Jane! I'm attending 3 Paralympic events, namely wheelchair basketball, Swimming and athletics and I'm super excited. I felt disappointed in friends and people generally when I see an instant disinterest when I mention it's a Paralympic event and not as they call it 'the real Olympics'!

For me, it's natural to support these Olympians as they don't allow their disability to preserve in their passion! I can't imagine I would be as positive and persevering and I really admire those abilities in people regardless of 'how they look'! They have more reason to be idolized than Usain Bolt if you ask me!

Sophielondon said...

Thanks for your great post. In France, last year, 'Les Intouchables', a true story about a very rich paralized man, hit the roof in the box office. It's coming in a few weeks in the Ciné Lumière at the French Institute in South Kensington. This film has changed perception of disabled people in France, at last!
http://www.allocine.fr/film/fichefilm_gen_cfilm=182745.html

Emma cossey said...

I'm actually more excited about the Paralympics than the Olympics, simply because I think they're hugely inspiring. Whether you have a disability or not, it proves you can achieve your goals. I also think its a great teaching tool, to raise awareness of certain disabilities in a positive light.

Naprika said...

Heading to the Paralympics myself, so excited abt it! Really interested to see how the athletes compete and in particular, seeing the sprinters. In the medical field, you encounter differences all the time, I often feel humbled to see some ppl who have severe physical disabilities. It is a shame what your friend says but like you say, she isn't used to seeing ppl with physical disabilities. Anyhow, I am aware some of the ppl I have met in the past are competing, which makes me even more excited.

Anonymous said...

I was at the Vancouver Winter Olympics and Paralympics. While the attention and crowds for the Paralympics weren't nearly at the same level, it was still a wonderful and exciting event. The opening ceremony was joyful and special and the events gave the opportunity for more local families and "regular" people to attend than did the Olympics. The crowds were great, the spirit was amazing, and the competition inspiring and top notch. It's almost too bad that they have to come so soon after the Olympics, because they are then seen as sort of "second rate"... but they aren't.

Marina said...

I'm looking forward to it because I have so much respect for people who have gone through accidents, injury, disease, illness or disfigurements and still remain positive and are just as able bodied as Olympians to compete in sport. It just shows anyone can do anything they want despite draw backs.

Wildthyme said...

"It just shows anyone can do anything they want despite draw backs."

Except it doesn't. Patronising at best.

Ever tried being getting commercial jobs as a disabled working MUA? Just. Does. Not. Happen. Agencies do not want to talk to you. PRs do not want to know you in case you make their brands look bad. I was forced out of my previous job (as a historian) because they would not accomodate me. Three years later, they've only got round to putting in a wheelchair lift because the student union got involved.

Tried going on the tube where you want and getting off again with a wheelchair? Getting the bus without receiving a mouthful of abuse from a buggy wielding mother?

A lot of disabled people, myself included are afraid that the Government will use the Paralympics as yet another stick to beat us with.

Maddy said...

@wildthyme I've been so caught up with seeing people like me on tv that I haven't really thought of the downsides. I get enough abuse as a disabled person on esa, perhaps you are right and atos/ dwp/ the gov will use this as another excuse to hurt us further. However, having recently tried to do all the things you've said and failed, my favourite being told that I couldn't use charing cross station as it was small and therefore they hadn't put in any wheelchair access, maybe the good of having disabled people in such a high profile position will make people aware of disabled people and their troubles in a way they haven't been previously (sorry if i'm not meant to comment like this, i'm never sure of the etiquette and i find this topic really interesting!)

Just me, Leah said...

I'm really looking forward to the Paralympics. I'm disabled and I'm really excited to see what people can do with a few modifications, loads of spirit and hard work.

I find it a little sad that the Paralympics seem to be an afterthought slapped on at the end of things, after all the hype has gone. Surely in the spirit of integration we should be aiming for able bodied events and disabled events on the same day, not weeks apart as it is now?

Hopefully the wonderful spirit will continue and it'll be an inspiring, empowering and uplifting Games.

Debbie said...

Reading your post made me think that perhaps I live in a little bubble all of my own. I was shocked at your friends comment about not wanting to watch limbless people, and am a bit sad that people would think that way. I have no physical or intellectual disability, so can't relate to the athletes in that respect, but am totally in awe of what they achieve.

Yes, the Olympic athletes are astonishing - they achieve amazing results and are, as we all know, the best in the world. However those athletes taking part in the Paraolympics have overcome the most incredible disabilities in order to achieve - mind over matter doesn't come into it.

I went to the closing ceremony, and the only downside for me was the extinguishing of the Olympic flame - I know that this was effectively what the ceremony was all about, but it did make me think that the Paraolympians are being treated as a bit of an "add-on" - they surely don't deserve that?

I am so pleased the Paraolympian Games have sold out, and hope that the spectators leave the Stadium feeling as I do - that these people are truly awe-inspiring.

E. Underland said...

Firstly thank you for writing this article, I know many wouldn't go near it.

This year I was far more excited for the Paralympics than the main Olympics and I don't have a disability. I'm just inspired and in total awe of some of the things these athletes have endured and at the end of the day never gave up and they go VERY hard! Have you seen the wheelchair basketball???? I snapped up tickets as soon as I could.

My highlight of the olympics was to watch Oscar Pistorius of South Africa make history, he beat pretty much all the 'able bodied' people in his first heat plus he brought much needed attention to the Paralympics.

I do think the closing ceremony should have happened after the Paralympics but I'm sure there was a reason for doing this which of course I will never understand.

Bring on the Superhumans!