Saturday, March 21, 2009

More on Cerrie Burnell

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the controversy over Cerrie Burnell's arm. In response to some parent's complaints that the sight of her incomplete arm would scare their children, she didn't get angry, but instead saw it as an opportunity to educate people about disability. Here is an excerpt from an article about her that appeared in the Daily Mail.

I don't deliberately try to make people confront my disability, but
nor do I try to hide it. This is me, and I am neither ashamed nor embarassed by

Of course, this criticism is upsetting, but I did not feel it was personal
criticism of me. I don't feel angry towards the parents, and if anything I'm
pleased that all this has opened up the debate. It can only be a good thing that
parents are using me as a chance to talk about disability with their

People need to be represented more honestly in the media, especially when
there is so much emphasis on the body beautiful, plastic surgery and this
obsession with trying to look like celebrities.

When you are not used to seeing normal people, let alone disabled people,
then anyone like me is going to create a stir. I think it's really time to start
changing perceptions.

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