NCIL recently reported that Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) walked away from negotiations on the UN Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities. According the NCIL, Senator Corker made the judgment that the disability community is less powerful than the Astroturf special interest groups pedaling lies against the CRPD.
Below is our CEO’s, Patricia Yeager’s response to this issue. Patricia sent the following email to Senator Corker:
Who knew that giving the hope of rights to people with disabilities around the world could lead to the downfall of America? Really? There is no way on God’s green earth that humanitarian public policy can lead to the takeover of America’s independence from other countries. This is an aspirational document that puts forth a goal for all nations to respect and better treat their citizens with disabilities as America tries to do. You have an opportunity to counter the backwards reputation of Tennessee toward its own citizens with disabilities and you chose to lead from a position of fear instead. When leaders in our country take this stance, we have more to fear from you than from other countries.
The right wing extremism of fear and stereotyping of minority groups is more of a threat to undermine our rights and way of life than any country…certainly more than a treaty with the goal of uplifting people with disabilities to a position where they can be contributors to the economic and civic fabric of their country.
I am saddened and shamed by your intransigence stance. I hope that one day you become very familiar with the prejudices surrounding people with disabilities and that you come to see this issue very differently. I hold the intention that we will reach our goal of inclusion and respect for people with disabilities with or without you and the people you represent. Eventually, the culture of good always triumphs the culture of fear.
Call to Action:
You can take a stand as well. Call Senator Corker’s DC and Tennessee offices. You can contact Senator Corker at 202-224-3344.