Is virtue its own reward? (part 2)
Top: A photo of a younger me in my school uniform taken for the class album.
In this second and concluding part of this series, I continue to talk about how awarding a prize for kindness affected me and my friendship.
I argue that such prizes go against the value of inclusion and a misunderstanding of what friendship and a wrong idea of what charity and compassion actually require of us. And instead of promoting equality and friendship, such awards risk to reinforce the idea that inequality is inevitable and that friendship with a less valued member of society is always a personal sacrifice and an unbalanced relationship based on power and status.
I fear that other children today may go through what I went through if society and the organisers of this prize ane similar initiatives ep not consider the implications their misguided good intentions they might have.
For, they mustn't forget that friendships between disabled and non-disabled children, for all intents and purposes, just like any other. Until we adults have to go and impose our own assumptions while, at the same time, doing little to remove the real barriers in society that cause our greatest problems.
The fact we feel the need to reward some children over others simply sends a message that people aren't equal and those in need to be included are often force to believe that they are given their rights out of generosity ane not because they're entitled to them.
At least for me, this prize has forced me to question my value as a human being and as a member of my own society.
To this day, I am happy to remain just that- as AB outsider. I want to live my life on my own terms because only I can know who I really am.
You can find a blog entry on this subject on both my blog at Gordon’s D-Zone (http://gdzone.gordonGD.com) or at ZoneMind (http://www.ZoneMind.com).
#inclusion, #disability, prize for kindness, childhood, friendships, #charity, #compassion, #value, #virtue, #Malta
To listen to Part 1, visit: http://audioboo.fm/boos/1469424-is-virtue-its-own-reward-part-1 )