Why The Disability Community Needs To Vote on November 6th

Logos promoting voting by people with disabilities

It’s just a couple of weeks since I said I was more or less quitting blogging, but I feel compelled to write a blog post about the upcoming U.S. Midterm Elections. In the work I do with #CripTheVote, I try to be balanced and “nonpartisan,” but this time I’m going to go ahead and say what I think needs to happen in the 2018 Midterms, and why it’s especially important for the disability community.

At minimum, we need to flip at least one house of Congress to Democratic control. I personally would prefer both the House and Senate, but we need to flip at least one. If you generally vote for Democrats, as I do, this is obvious. If you usually vote for Republicans, you may think I'm being excessively partisan. But hear me out. There are four big reasons why people with disabilities, in particular, need to make this happen this year, and vote in noticeable numbers while doing it.

1. To act as a check on President Trump

Despite endless debate over President Trump's exact political significance, he is, if nothing else, a wild card. Nobody really knows for sure what he will do. So it is clearly a mistake to think he would never actually do anything to hurt "your" people, however you define that. And nothing in Trump’s history or rhetoric indicates that he has any special sympathy or interest in people with disabilities.

On the contrary, President Trump is notable for how openly he evaluates people based on how conventionally attractive they are, and whether or not they are “normal” in his view. He clearly despises anyone he regards as weak or alien in any way. Many of us disabled people feel should comparatively accepted by our families and communities. However, all of us who have disabilities also know that in fundamental ways we are still easily singled out as needy, abnormal, and unfamiliar. These are not qualities that President Trump is ever likely to embrace. If it ever looks to him like scapegoating people with disabilities would help him, it’s hard to imagine him hesitating to do it. It’s already happened in the United Kingdom, which is just barely emerging now from a period of years when both public sentiment and public policy directly targeted disabled people as unworthy financial drains on society. A strong opposition in Congress would at least help prevent a characteristic Trump tirade or delusion about disabled people from becoming actual public policy.

(Note … His administration is already targeting disabled immigrants very specifically, by proposing to ban aspiring immigrants and asylum seekers if they are deemed likely to be a “public charge” … that is, if they may need human services, due to, among other things, disabilities. It’s cruel on its own, and think of the precedent it sets even for disabled citizens.)

2. To act as a check on primarily Republican plans that would hurt disabled people

These include:

- Allowing health insurance companies to once again refuse coverage or charge more for “pre-existing conditions.”

- Limiting or cutting Medicaid, or narrowing Medicaid eligibility

- Cutting Social Security Disability, or narrowing eligibility

- Weakening the Americans with Disabilities Act

All of these steps can be prevented if just a single house of Congress switches to Democratic control for at least the next four years. There are no guarantees, but the likelihood of any of these things happening in the near term go way down if just one house of Congress is controlled by Democrats.

3. We need to demonstrate the growing power and political relevance of the "disability vote," so politicians of all parties and beliefs will feel they have to take disability issues and disabled voters seriously.

This is should be important to you whether you are a Democrat or a Republican. At some point, sooner or later, Democrats will be in a position to make major policy again. Nevertheless, it is a mistake to assume that Democrats will get disability policy right all on their own, instinctively. It really isn’t enough to for the disability community to help bring about a “Blue Wave” on November 6th. Democrats, too, need to recognize people with disabilities and their families as a factor in their future vision, policies, and tactics, and we will still have to be vigilant and hold elected officials accountable, no matter who is in Congress, the Supreme Court, or The White House.

4. We need to vote for state and local officials who actually make and implement most of the everyday decisions that affect disabled people's lives. And we need to be noticed as we do it so even state, city, county, and town officials will take our needs into account.

- Town and city councils decide on accessibility and good repair of streets and sidewalks, and in colder climates, what is and isn't done to clear snow and ice from pedestrian areas.

- County legislatures set the tone and budgetary parameters for how social and human services are delivered, including those for people with disabilities and their families.

- States have a lot of control over the scope and eligibility of Medicaid, including programs that provide long-term care and supports for disabled people.

You don’t have to be “into politics” or commit to full-time disability activism to recognize that elections do matter for people with disabilities and their families. And this year there are specific stakes and reasons for all of us to vote, and do so consciously and thoughtfully as disability voters.

Here are some online resources on voting … some general, some specific to concerns of the disability community:

1. Online Voter Registration - Vote.org

2. Find Your Polling Place - National Association of Secretaries of State

3. Polling Site Accessibility Checklist - U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division

4. Find Out What Is On Your Ballot - Ballotready

5. Voting Rights Subcommittee - National Council on Independent Living

6. Disability Issues Guide - American Association of People with Disabilities

7. Disability Issues Surveys, 2016 & 2018 - #CripTheVote

8. Voting Resources - Autistic Self Advocacy Network

9. Plain Language 2018 Voter Guide - Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law

10. Information On All Public Offices and Elections - Ballotpedia

11. Election Polling and Forecasts - FiveThirtyEight.com

12, The 2018 Midterm Elections, explained - Vox.com

Throwback Thursday

Cartoon picture of a white dog with glasses next to a red-haired boy with glasses, both in front of a wall-sized computer

Two years ago in Disability Thinking: For Senate.

So, Representative Duckworth won. She is now Senator Tammy Duckworth. Her election was one of the few bright spots for me in an otherwise demoralizing 2016 Election Night.

It's too early to tell what kind of profile Sen. Duckworth will develop in the Senate, but because she's disabled and so am I, she feels like one of my Senators. And on the subject of disabled people in public office, two things:

1. In the survey we conducted for #CripTheVote last Spring, the top disability priority for the 508 respondents was getting more disabled people elected and appointed at all levels of government.

2. This Sunday #CripTheVote will host a Twitter Chat on Disabled People in Public Service ... April 2, at 9 PM Eastern Time.

Undercooked Blog Posts on Disability and Health Insurance: Part 4

Blue Caduceus symbol representing the medical profession

I keep wanting to write some kind of definitive take on disability and health insurance. Unfortunately, the speed and sheer absurdity of the Trump Administration and Republican Congress' American Health Care Act forces me to slap together more of series of thoughts, and hope they do some good. At the very least, it will do me some good to try.

I decided to hold off on the final post until after the House vote on the AHCA was resolved one way or another, or, you know, ANOTHER.

Part 1: 5 Basic Points - March 18, 2017

Part 2: A Tortured Analogy - March 19, 2017

Part 3: Questions for Lawmakers - March 20, 2017

Post Four: A Positive Message, or What Do We Actually Want?

So, now that the American Health Care Act has been withdrawn ... this version of it anyway ... what kind of health insurance system would actually be good for disabled people? Put another way, if Hillary Clinton were President and there were slight Democratic majorities in Congress, what would the disability community be fighting for in health care?

I don't think we as a movement should spend too much time trying to decide which grand health care scheme we should endorse. Instead, let's focus on what disabled people, specifically, need from ANY health care system.

I would like to suggest three possible criteria:

1. No out of pocket price difference or service restrictions, regardless of disability.

2. Long term care at least as strong and community-based as found in the best state Medicaid programs.

3. Full eligibility for disabled people, regardless of employment status or income.

It may take years before we can once again really focus on disability health care policy we want, and in the meantime, we will probably have to keep playing defense. But just in case we are ever asked, "What do you really want then?" I think it's a good idea to remind ourselves what we are actually after.

What do you want to see in health care policy for disabled people?

Undercooked Blog Posts on Disability and Health Insurance: Part 3

Blue Caduceus symbol representing the medical profession

I keep wanting to write some kind of definitive take on disability and health insurance. Unfortunately, the speed and sheer absurdity of the Trump Administration and Republican Congress' American Health Care Act forces me to slap together more of series of thoughts, and hope they do some good. At the very least, it will do me some good to try.

I will post 4 blogs in all, starting today and winding up on Tuesday. The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the AHCA on Thursday.

Part 1: 5 Basic Points - March 18, 2017

Part 2: A Tortured Analogy - March 19, 2017

Post Three: 3 Questions for Lawmakers

All cynicism and partisanship aside, there are lawmakers who seem like decent people, but support cruel, nonsensical policies because they believe in AN IDEA. Right now, they are mostly Republicans, and they usually have more selfish motives for regressive tax-cutting and dismantling, rather than improving a moderately successful program like Obamacare. But most of them also say they are motivated by something like idealism ... for instance, belief in rewarding and incentivizing hard work, or giving people "a stake" in health care by making sure everyone has to pay something for it.

I would like to ask these members of Congress three questions about how their beliefs and ideals play out in the real world for disabled people:

1. Do you believe that when the government provides material support for poor people ... things like health insurance, disability, food stamps ... it is fundamentally bad for them?

2. Do you think that capping or cutting Medicaid will prompt significant numbers of disabled people to get jobs, and earn more money than they do now? Do you think that having to pay more for health insurance will make disabled people suddenly get healthier, and pursue cost-saving cures and therapies we previously ignored?

3. Do you believe it is better for people with significant disabilities if the government to pays for nursing home fees, rather than the cost of home care?

There is obviously some slant to these questions. The "right" and "wrong" answers are implied. At the same time, I think they are legitimate, honest questions Congress people should at least have to answer before they vote.

Undercooked Blog Posts on Disability and Health Insurance: Part 2

Blue Caduceus symbol representing the medical profession

I keep wanting to write some kind of definitive take on disability and health insurance. Unfortunately, the speed and sheer absurdity of the Trump Administration and Republican Congress' American Health Care Act forces me to slap together more of series of thoughts, and hope they do some good. At the very least, it will do me some good to try.

I will post 4 blogs in all, starting Saturday and winding up on Tuesday. The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the AHCA on Thursday.

Part 1: 5 Basic Points - March 18, 2017

Part 2: A Tortured Analogy

I worry a lot ... probably too much ... about overstating how awful and / or evil the Republicans' plans for health care are. Although I believe that more disabled people WILL DIE if the AHCA is passed, I don't believe that anyone of consequence actually wants that to happen ... apart from maybe the odd Twitter troll or Bannon acolytes who enjoy dispassionately discussing the benefits of having fewer disabled people to around to weaken our bloodline or whatever.

To me, the question of intent is almost beside the point. You can do a lot of damage to disabled people accidentally, and that's usually how we get hurt, both on the policy and personal levels.

I'm a small guy, 4 feet tall, and not super steady on my feet. Whenever I think of the danger to disabled people when hostile or indifferent politicians and activists get excited about big ideas and big changes, I think of myself trying not to get knocked over or trampled at a frat party. It's not that the revelers around me mean any harm. The problem is they don't notice I am there at all until it's too late. All they can do after backing into me is slur, "Oh, sorry little buddy ... didn't see you there!" and wander off. You see, they are busy doing other things, and they don't need to have it out for me to hurt me ... indifference is more than enough.

Politics is like that for disabled people, for the disability community. People have these other objectives and assumptions that may or may not be fine as far as they go, but they only rarely take the time to check and really see whether what they are doing will work for us, or whether their awesome ideas just don't apply to us.

By the way, this is somewhat of a nonpartisan phenomenon. I had to be careful in parties at my own fraternity in college, even though I felt comfortable with these people and they had a pretty good idea of my unique situation. The main reason I didn't support Bernie Sanders' Presidential run is that he never really took the time to convince the disability community that, for instance, "Medicare For All" would include the same or better home care and community services we get from Medicaid. I don't think for a moment that Sanders wants to institutionalize disabled people, but I'm still not sure he understands how that risk relates to health care proposals, even ones lots of disabled people would otherwise support.

At the moment, however, we are all living in a straightforwardly hostile frat, where angry, hyped up, brothers seem set on making the most of a newly won and unprecedented degree of freedom. They really do want to party like it's 1955, and we can easily get trampled in the process, because it seems like we simply do not exist in their vision of American Greatness.

Undercooked Blog Posts on Disability and Health Insurance: Part 1

Blue Caduceus symbol representing the medical profession

I keep wanting to write some kind of definitive take on disability and health insurance. Unfortunately, the speed and sheer absurdity of the Trump Administration and Republican Congress' American Health Care Act forces me to slap together more of series of thoughts, and hope they do some good. At the very least, it will do me some good to try.

I will post 4 blogs in all, starting today and winding up on Tuesday. The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on the AHCA on Thursday.

Part One: 5 Basic Points

1. Most people don't really understand how health insurance works for disabled people. A lot of disabled people don't fully understand either.

2. Health insurance isn't something disabled people choose to buy "in case we get sick." It's something we have to have because we use it all the time, just to survive and function.

3. A subset of disabled people need what's broadly termed Long Term Care, which is everyday direct help to do basic self care, like getting out of bed, bathing, dressing, using the toilet, cooking and eating, etc. Pretty much the only health insurance that covers this over a disabled person's lifetime is Medicaid. Medicare doesn't cover it. Almost no employer-provided or individual market policies over it. Medicaid is the whole ballgame.

4. One way to control the cost of our care is to provide all the care possible in our own homes, rather than nursing homes and other institutions. Again, individual cases vary, but in general, supporting home care is cheaper and it's what most of us want anyway. But you have to be deliberate about doing this ... it won't just happen by lifting regulations and giving everyone theoretical "choices" with insufficient resources. And let's be clear, the savings from switching decisively to home care would be significant, but not revolutionary.

5. Individual cases vary, but overall, disabled people cost more to cover than pretty much everyone else ... sometimes a lot more. And there is almost nothing individual disabled people can do to mitigate this. Market flexibility, financial "skin in the game," and "personal responsibility" have little to no impact on our concrete needs. At best we can trim at the edges with assistive technologies and creative self-care techniques, but frankly, most of us have pushed the envelope on that already.

The point being ... there is really no untested way to save massive amounts of money on disabled people, other than to let us die or become permanent adult wards of overworked, under-resourced families. There is no super-obvious, low-hanging fruit of neglected solutions in this field ... aside from the fore mentioned shift away from nursing homes towards home care. Even that can only save so much. And there's currently basically nobody and nothing in the for-profit or even non-profit private sector that can meet the needs of disabled people without government funds.

There are no miracle cures for most disabilities, and their are no miraculous private-sector fixes to disability policy.

My Obamacare Story

Tell the President your ACA / Medicaid Story! https://www.whitehouse.gov/obamacare-share-your-story

The White House wants to hear peoples' personal stories about the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare. I think I know what kind of stories they hope to hear, but the format of their inquiry allows for open-ended, freestyle response, so here what I submitted:

I have had physical disabilities all of my life. Until I was 22, I was on my father's health insurance. He was an independent pediatrician, and I'm sure paid for the family's health insurance out of pocket, though I have no idea at all how much he paid. From my perspective as a child and youth, as far as I know, we never had any problem getting my many surgeries, braces, hospitalizations, and therapies paid for.

Later, my father went to work in public health, and got the family's coverage through the county and later the state he worked for. When I aged out of family coverage, I was able to continue my coverage through COBRA payments, which were expensive, but necessary since going without health insurance was not an option, and a break in coverage would have created a "pre-existing condition" problem for picking up subsequent coverage.

When I finished graduate school I was able to get health insurance from my full time job. My disabilities were never an impediment to full coverage. I paid 20% of the premium for a pretty good plan.

In 2012, after a little over 20 years of full-time work, my disabilities altered and progressed in ways that made it necessary for me to stop working full time. I again continued my work-based coverage with COBRA for about a year. Then, through a combination of the Affordable Care Act and New York State's "Medicaid Buy-In" for working people with disabilities, I was able to qualify for Medicaid and continue to receive it while doing the part-time work that was within my capacities. Having gotten Social Security Disability, I also eventually was enrolled in Medicare.

At the moment, Medicaid and Medicare pay for the ventilator and oxygen concentrator I use every night while I sleep, and for medications I take every day to make my disability-related chronic health conditions controlled. These are life-preserving treatments, and they also make it possible for me to work to the degree that I can. Also, on average, I am hospitalized once every two years or so due to upper respiratory infections. There are effective treatments for this, but of course hospitalization is prohibitively expensive if paid for out of pocket. Without Medicaid, especially, I would be forced into a much more dependent situation and my health would deteriorate severely.

The Affordable Care Act was an absolutely crucial bridge from one work / health situation to another. And Medicaid itself is one of the main foundations of the life I live now. In the future, should I need everyday home care, I know that Medicaid will be there as no other insurance can ever be ... unless Medicaid is significantly cut or made into something less than a direct entitlement. The Affordable Care Act has been a tremendous benefit to me. And by making it possible for me to work to my changing capacities, it has enabled me to continue contributing to my community in the work I am able to do and the taxes I pay.

Disabled people in particular really need to talk in detail about not only Obamacare, but Medicare, Medicaid, and overall what health insurance means for us.

Click here to tell your story.

Affordable Care Act Repeal

Light grey crosshatched background with black capital letters reading: ACA Repeal: Reasons & Consequences

There are two aspects of the disability community’s discussion about possible repeal of the Affordable Care Act that I think need more clarity. First is the enormous variety of reasons, good and bad, that people have for opposing the ACA. The second is what the actual consequences of repeal would be, (with or without replacement), for people with disabilities.

Over the weekend I did some brainstorming on these questions, which I want to share. I’m not going to go into depth on each item or observation. I just want these ideas out there.

First question: Why do people oppose the Affordable Care Act?

1. Philosophically & morally opposed to government involvement in another major industry -  healthcare.

2. Philosophically & morally opposed to the individual mandate to buy health insurance.

3. Believe good health insurance is a reward for hard work, not a universal right.

4. Want better health insurance, but don’t trust the government to handle it right.

5. Believe the ACA is too much of a gift to private insurance & pharma industries.

6. Want a single payer national health insurance program.

7. Unwilling to sacrifice any (more) of their own wealth to make things better for others.

8. Wealthier people who resent paying higher taxes on their excellent private health insurance plans.

9. Marginally poor / working class people who resent paying premiums on the ACA markets while others get Medicaid.

10. Blame rate increases on the ACA, even though rates almost always went up each year BEFORE the ACA.

11. Still associate the ACA with the website rollout debacle.

12. Unaware of how crucial the ACA has already become to tens of millions of people.

13. Don’t understand how popular parts of the ACA, like covering pre-existing conditions, depend on unpopular parts, like the individual mandate.

14. Some younger, healthier people would rather pay extra-low premiums for very bare-bones insurance plans that the ACA prohibited.

15. Confusion … some honest, some willful … between repealing the ACA and fixing its flaws.

16. Not clear on what the ACA is, what Obamacare is, or how health insurance even works. It’s all confusing and yuck!

17. Believe the ACA is a disaster because “everyone” says so.

18. Instinctively don’t believe that Trump or like-minded Republicans would really do anything truly harmful.

19. Believe that some are just panicking, while others stoke the panic for partisan political reasons.

20. Compelled to undo Obama’s signature accomplishment because … well … OBAMA.

Note that you don’t have to think all of these things at once to oppose the ACA. In fact, some of these reasons come from polar opposite ends of the usual political spectrum. And, it should go without saying that I, personally, do not subscribe to all or most of these reasons. It should go without saying, but I feel like I should say it anyway. I love "Obamacare." It enrages me that a few slightly different election outcomes in the Midwest and we would be discussing serious plans to make the ACA better. But, things are as they are, and instead we're on the defensive. So ...

Second question: What are the likely consequences for disabled people if the Affordable Care Act is repealed?

First of all, let’s talk about people dying. Saying "disabled people will die" probably sounds like politically motivated exaggeration to a lot of people who aren't familiar with disability issues. Disabled people WILL die of course, if the ACA is repealed. Even if is replaced, if it is replaced with any of the models Republicans in Congress are batting around now, people will die who wouldn't have died otherwise.

However, premature death isn't the only consequence of ACA repeal for disabled people. To mention just a few others:

1. Ending Medicaid expansion in states that opted to implement it would cause many medium-income disabled people to lose Medicaid eligibility.

2. Losing Medicaid means losing home care, which many disabled people absolutely must have in order to live independently and productively.

3. More disabled adults would have to continue living with parents, or go back to living with parents, curtailing their life development and exhausting families physically, emotionally, and financially. 

4. Many disabled people, deprived of work, unable to function independently due to loss of home care and other supports, would wind up in the care system of last resort: nursing homes ... paid for by Medicaid once every penny the person has is spent.

5. Most disabled people need and use health insurance all the time, not "just in case." We can’t shop around or risk going without in order to economize.

6. Chronic and delicate medical conditions would go untreated, or inadequately treated, resulting in more illness and disability, which is both traumatic and costly.

7. Lack of health insurance, and insecure health insurance, makes it much harder for disabled people to get and keep secure employment.

8. Disabled people who have jobs that include health insurance would be trapped by their jobs, unable to pursue better, more suitable employment opportunities.

9. Not being able to stay on parents' health insurance in the early 20s would make independence and starting strong careers much harder for disabled youth.

10. Disabled people who have managed to cultivate fulfilling life goals and dreams would be thrown back into sheer survival mode, to nobody’s benefit.

These consequences are serious enough, without even considering an actual death toll.

So, what does all of this suggest about how to confront ACA repeal? I don’t know. Maybe just that while we hammer away at the broad, blunt concept of ACA repeal, we also need to pick apart the opposition and take time to explain in detail what it all means specifically for disabled people.

Yes, it's annoying and offensive that we keep having to explain ourselves. But if ever there was a time to repeat the obvious to people who should already know, this is probably it.

12/7/16 - #CripTheVote Twitter Chat: Mapping Our Intersectional Futures

#CripTheVote Twitter Chat  , Mapping Our Intersectional Futures, December 7, 2016, 7 pm Eastern  , Guest Hosts: Dominick Evans, Sandy Ho,  Talila “TL” Lewis and Vilissa K. Thompson

#CripTheVote Twitter Chat

Mapping Our Intersectional Futures

December 7, 2016, 7 pm Eastern

Guest Hosts: Dominick Evans, Sandy Ho,  Talila “TL” Lewis and Vilissa K. Thompson

Andrew Pulrang, Gregg Beratan, and Alice Wong, the co-partners of #CripTheVote recently published their updated mission after the 2016 election. Join us for our 15th chat focusing on intersectional activism, political participation, and next steps. We are proud and honored to have four stellar guest hosts: Dominick Evans, Sandy Ho, Talila “TL” Lewis and Vilissa K. Thompson.

How to Participate

Follow @AndrewPulrang @DisVisibility @GreggBeratan on Twitter

Follow the Guest Hosts on Twitter: @dominickevans @IntersectedCrip @talilalewis @VilissaThompson

When it’s time, search #CripTheVote on Twitter for live tweets under the ‘Live’ tab to follow the full conversation.

If you might be overwhelmed by the volume of tweets and only want to see the chat’s questions, check @DisVisibility’s tweets. Each question will tweeted 8-9 minutes apart.

Use the hashtag #CripTheVote when you tweet. If you can’t join us on 12/7, feel free to tweet anytime before or after with the hashtag.

If you don’t use Twitter, check out the live-stream: http://twubs.com/CripTheVote

Check out this explanation of how to participate in a chat by Ruti Regan.

Questions for the 12/7/16 Twitter Chat

Welcome to our chat on #IntersectionalActivism. Please remember to use the #CripTheVote hashtag when you tweet.

If you respond to a question such as Q1, your tweet should follow this format: “A1 [your message] #CripTheVote

Before we start, let’s name & honor the Black feminist who coined the term #intersectionality, legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw. #CripTheVote

In a recent article, Crenshaw describes #intersectionality as “a way of thinking about identity and its relationship to power.” #CripTheVote

#MustRead: A piece by Kimberlé Crenshaw, legal scholar & critical race theorist, on intersectionality. #CripTheVote

Q1 What does #intersectionality mean to you? What do you think an intersectional future for the disability community look like? #CripTheVote

Q2 What are examples of critical issues & concerns facing multiply marginalized disabled people right now, pre-/post-election? #CripTheVote

Q3 Why is it urgent that any activism within the disability community is intersectional in light of the recent election? #CripTheVote

Q4 What is preventing our disability communities from being intersectional? What mindsets and practices need to change?  #CripTheVote

Q5 What are some examples of #IntersectionalActivism you want to highlight? Please signal boost groups, folks or links! #CripTheVote

Q6 How can we encourage intersectional disabled people to become more involved in activism? How do we support those who are? #CripTheVote

Q7 How will you make your activism intersectional & pressure orgs you support to do the same? Provide specific ideas/examples? #CripTheVote

Q8: What work does the disability community have to take on now to build an intersectional future? What are the first steps? #CripTheVote

This ends our #CripTheVote chat. Many thanks to guest hosts @talilalewis @dominickevans @IntersectedCrip & @VilissaThompson!

Please continue the convo! This Twitter chat will be archived in Storify later this evening. Look for tweets with the #CripTheVote hashtag

Additional Reading

Crenshaw, Kimberlé. (September 24, 2015). Why Intersectionality Can’t Wait. Washington Post.

Blahovec, Sarah. (November 21, 2016). Five Lessons I’ve Learned About Intersectional Disability Activism. Huffington Post.

Brown, Keah. (October 14, 2016). Disabled People Of Color Struggle To Be Heard. The Establishment.

Çevik, Kerima. (October 19, 2015). Random Thoughts at The Intersection of Race, White Privilege, and Disability Rights Advocacy. Intersected.

Lewis, Talila A. (July 22, 2016). Achieving Liberation Through Disability Solidarity.

Lewis, Talila A. (August 28, 2016). Fighting for Free[dom] & the Expense of Erasure.

National Council on Independent Living Diversity Committee. (November 30, 2016). We Can’t Breathe: The Deaf & Disabled Margin of Police Brutality Project.

The Harriet Tubman Collective. (September 8, 2016). Disability Solidarity: Completing the “Vision for Black Lives.”

Thompson, Vilissa & Wong, Alice. (July 26, 2016). #GetWokeADA26: Disabled People of Color Speak Out, Part One. Ramp Your Voice!

Thompson, Vilissa & Wong, Alice. (July 26, 2016). #GetWokeADA26: Disabled People of Color Speak Out, Part Two. Ramp Your Voice! Disability Visibility Project.

Wade, Carrie. (November 14, 2016). Lessons For Our Future From the Disability Intersectionality Summit. Autostraddle.

Statement from the National Disability Leadership Alliance on Solidarity and the 2016 Presidential Election.

Williams, Steve. (August 21, 2014) What is Intersectionality and Why Is It Important? Care2 Causes.

About #CripTheVote

#CripTheVote is a nonpartisan online movement activating and engaging disabled people on policies and practices important to the disability community. https://disabilityvisibilityproject.com/2016/11/17/looking-ahead-the-future-of-cripthevote/

Please note we do not represent the entire disability community nor would we ever claim to do so. There are many ways to create social change and engaging in conversation is one approach.

“Like” #CripTheVote Facebook Page

A note on language and why we use the term ‘crip’

After The Election: What I'd Like To Know

Illustration of a jumble of different colored numbers

I doubt we will get much reliable data on how disabled people actually voted this year, but I would still like to know ...

Did the percentage of eligible voters with disabilities who actually voted go up, down, or stay about the same?

If only voters with disabilities had voted, who would have won?

How many voters with disabilities consider disability issues when they vote? How much do their disability experiences affect their votes, compared to all other influences?

Are there any "deal breaker" issues that cause disabled people to override their personal politics and change who they vote for?

Is there a correlation between how disabled people think about their disabilities and how they vote? Do disabled people who see their disabilities as a medical problem vote differently than those who view disability as a social issue or identity?

My guess:

Disabled people who are involved in disability culture and activism probably voted mostly for Clinton, some for other candidates, relatively few for Trump.

And ...

Disabled people who aren't involved in disability culture and activism, or who don't regard disability as an important part of their identity, probably voted about the same as any random sample of voters in their particular region of the U.S., with disability having no effect, or very little.

So ...

A lot probably depends on what percentages of the total disabled population are and aren't "activists," or whatever we want to call the disability version of "woke." Is that a lot of us, or would we be shocked to know how few?