Monday, September 26

What a bad leg!

Her name is Sian Green-Lord, an English model who these days has been the victim of malpractice by some designer, or agency, who thought it was a good idea erase his prosthesis and replace it with a flesh and bone leg. And then the purpose of this campaign is defeated. So many years of self-acceptance and personal work so that, on top of stealing your photo, they censor it.

It is intolerable that in the latest campaign of the Ministry of Equality the acceptance of bodies is promoted, what they now call “body positivity”, and there is such a gigantic base error. Because they are doing the same thing as that poster: erasing the diversity that it defends, not to mention that the rest of the people that appear are manual stereotypes, nothing to do with what is on the street.

This issue is the same as always with people with disabilities: inclusion yes, but as you want, let’s not bother. And it is that even in inclusion there are degrees and scales. People with disabilities have to comply with aesthetic canons, that the scars are not noticeable, that the deformities are not seen. All this is fulfilled by a person sitting in a wheelchair, the archetype of the person with a disability.

In general, diversity is drawn by normative people and this is the first thing to change. We need plural voices that when they are going to speak, write or illustrate a topic, cover all its dimensions. What if they were telling your story and it wasn’t quite the way you live it? I don’t want this to happen. I have my own voice, people with disabilities have it; and we are not, nor do we want to be, the object of policies by and for the normative.

That is why it is necessary that, in public and private, there are people with disabilities so that these things do not happen, that we do not want to be a quota, this is not enough. We do not want to be a social group that serves to cover up certain policies well-wishers. Perhaps this is a time to claim a preferential place in society because that is when we are really going to be able to feel included and stop being a quota and a political weapon.

In what head should a prosthesis be censored, as if it were something offensive, in a campaign of acceptance of all bodies? Are we still in the second division? It’s okay to be fat, skinny, tall, short… but a person with a disability? Why do we bother so much? Because we are still in the tyranny of the image, of diverse but controlled regulations, lest someone too disruptive slip in. Because this is nothing more than a business, one like any other. The day we are entitled to our space, then and only then will this start to work. Meanwhile we will have to continue fighting against the lack of empathy, the lack of rigor, the lack of decency. This is not makeup, this is about our lives.