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Snowy Owl
Snowy Owl

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Joined: 20 Dec 2008
Age: 51
Gender: Female
Posts: 139
Location: Washington, DC

10 Jan 2009, 8:02 pm

My partner wrote the following:


People with disabilities--and people with Aspergers or otherwise on the Autistic spectrum--are joining forces to take a stand against PITY. At best, pity may trigger a momentary impulse to donate a few dollars to charity--for example, via Jerry Lewis' annual US telethon for Muscular Dystrophy. But the pity remains entrenched long after the fundraising events are over. People who pity people with all disabilities usually never think to challenge the assumption that we should be passive recipients of charity. They don't think to question why we don't have better access to full participation in society. Fueling pitying attitudes undermines progress toward social equality for people with ALL disabilities.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that it will give Jerry Lewis its Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award on February 22, 2009. Disability rights activists object to this award. During his decades of hosting the Labor Day Telethon, Jerry Lewis has perpetuated negative, stereotypical attitudes and PITY toward people with muscular dystrophy and other disabilities.

Read and sign the petition protesting this undeserved award at:

Join the Facebook Group that is coordinating efforts to protest the award:

Read this blog post on the petition campaign; on the important difference between "pity" and "empathy"; why Jerry's brand of pity is destructive; and why real empathy is more likely to lead to human rights: ... test-pity/

Read what other bloggers say about the award, and why the disability community is enraged, at ... ting-pity/

Please circulate this email freely. Thank you.

"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not 'Eureka!' (I found it!) but 'That's funny ...'" -- Isaac Asimov


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Joined: 26 Mar 2008
Gender: Male
Posts: 535
Location: Lancashire, England

12 Jan 2009, 12:22 pm

I've signed the petition.

Blue Jay
Blue Jay

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Joined: 11 Jan 2009
Age: 31
Gender: Female
Posts: 83

12 Jan 2009, 9:15 pm

ya seriously