What Does It Mean To Be An Inspiration?
Politics and Activism

What Does It Mean To Be An Inspiration?

Don't use that word too loosely.

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Everyone has their own perception of what it means to be an inspiration or know someone who is inspirational. When I think of what it means to be an inspiration, I often think of someone who fought in a war and lived to tell their story. Usually, someone inspirational is just an ordinary person that did or is doing an extraordinary thing(s).

Recently, there has been a LOT of individuals with disabilities getting asked to prom. I have mostly seen videos, pictures, etc. circulating around on Facebook. There is one picture that really caught my eye which I will speak about a later on in this article. As a member of the disabled community, I'm glad that more people who may have a disability are being asked to prom by "normal people."

As you're reading this, you might be saying to yourself, "why is she complaining I thought all they wanted was inclusion." Inclusion yes. If you're doing something just to become "Facebook famous" and are looking for an ego boost because you're so "inspirational" for taking an individual that happens to be disabled to prom, but you don't really care about that person at all? Leave them alone. Go home. Watch Netflix. Or go by yourself. Don't use other people and whatever situation they may be in to make yourself look better. At the end of the day, you're only going to look dumb to everyone who can see past your charade.

I myself have been called an inspiration. While I appreciate the compliment, I don't consider myself an inspiring person. I get up, and get an education, just like everyone else who attends college. While it may not be the easiest thing for me to do, I always try to get what I need to done. I have the motivation to further educate and better myself which some people do not. I understand that. But, I haven't fought fires or saved lives. I'm just trying to live my life to the best of my ability like everyone else. Does being a functional individual who happens to be in a wheelchair really make me an inspiration?

Now, back to the picture I mentioned earlier. When I first saw this, I couldn't really put my feelings into words. As I was trying to find it, all I had to google was "wheelchair prom meme" and it was the second thing that came up on google images. To me, that says something. There are 100 other wheelchair jokes that can be put on memes, but yet these two are the second image that popped up.

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I don't know the back-story behind these two or if they know their picture was a meme. I can only speak on how I would feel if that was me. Maybe she's okay with it, in my personal opinion, I don't think she should be. But then again, as I said I don't know. This is why the face of disability hasn't changed in the media as of yet. We're looked at people who need to be pitied and anyone who associates themselves is inspirational or has such a good heart.

Next time you see a video or a meme of someone disabled just think of it as a person doing something. Whenever you call someone inspiring or inspirational it is downplaying the efforts of everyone else who may actually be an inspiration.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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