Obnoxious Rant of the Evening
Obnoxious rant of the evening:
When we talk about whether people in group homes have the key to the front door, the ability to go to the refrigerator and eat when they want, and the right to invite guests over, we are talking about important things, but we are only talking about proxies for the most important thing: independence.
You can't see independence, but you can see who has a key, so we measure that, but it is possible to give someone a key and deny them the independence to use it freely. In fact, it is not hard at all. So we must be careful not to mistake keys for independence.
By "independence" I do not mean what nondisabled people tend to mean, doing things unassisted, but rather doing things uncontrolled. Doing things, with support -- because we all get support in doing things; can you imagine a nondisabled person in a city today getting dinner without the support of farmers and truckers and road maintenance workers and architects and checkout workers and so on? -- but without that support being used to control us....