I don’t need fixing.

On the 7th of November, 2016 the a United Nations committee declared that the United Kingdom was in breach of the United Nations Convention of the Rights of Disabled People (UNCRPD), after a two year investigation. What should have ideally been a turning point, to positively change the “grim reality” of life for disabled people, was quickly snubbed by the current government as “offensive”. The government reassured the public it was “continuously seeking improvements for disabled people” and the findings were soon dismissed and forgotten. However, disabled people continue to face the human rights abuses the UN report outlines. It’s 3 months later, apart from the promise of reassessing a lot of people’s Personal Independence Payment claims, not much has happened. I’m angry about that.

Since starting my MA in disability studies in September, Ableism is the concept that I’ve come across, and one I like to use. In a similar way to racism or sexism, ableism is the idea that disabled people are part of a disabled: non-disabled dichotomy. Being disabled is seen as inherently negative as a result. Ableism permeates all aspects of the social world, from social policy, to everyday interactions with others. The UNCRPD aims to combat ableism, by regularly following each signatory country to ensure they are doing more and more to meet all the articles.

Raised in the UN report into the UK violations, were 11 recommendations, many of which centred on the changes to the welfare state, that hugely affect disabled people, infringing on their human rights. Many of the UN’s concerns are about the changes to welfare, adopted since 2010, as well as the rights to independent living and to be included in the community, social protection and employment of persons with disabilities.


I cannot stress how important this report should have been, in changing the government’s policies towards welfare for society’s most vulnerable.


But, since much of what we see in the media and from our government centres on ableism: where disabled people are ‘scroungers’ and hear things like ‘Oh I wish I didn’t have to work and get free money’ – is it really a surprise?

There has been an alarming rise in this sort of rhetoric across all areas of life. What society needs to do is recognise that disabled people have a lot to give. We need to move on from the poles of ‘inspiration overcomes disability’ and ‘tragically suffers from disability’ – what happens to all of us who fall somewhere in between? Is disability really as scary and negative as society thinks it is?

As a woman with a chronic pain, joint problems and dyspraxia, I don’t necessarily suffer. I know that’s hard for many people to understand. I still go to university, see my friends, and live my life. Shocking.

What I suffer from is a society that would prefer if I were ‘normal’

That I should attempt to continually ‘fix’ myself, to pass as able bodied / non-disabled.

My answer to that is, no.

Fix society’s attitude.

Fix the welfare system.

Fix the access issues

Fix the pathology and medicalisation.

Fix the lack of awareness and understanding.

I do not need fixing.



This is a disability assessment 

This is a disability assessment
This is for Personal Independence Payment
This is death
This is humiliation 
This is judgement day 
This is the fine line between scrounger and innocent 
This is the difference between food bank or a food shop
This is being able to heat your home
This is the key your freedom 
This is the key your destitution
This is your fate- decided
This is a prompt for a UN enquiry
This is a test 

This is a trial 

This is ‘yes’ ‘no’ ‘sometimes’

This is the way the government defines disability
This is wrong 
This needs to stop 
This kills disabled people
When will that be enough?

Image credit: http://www.scriptonitedaily.com/2013/03/29/our-last-good-friday-easter-monday-beginning-of-the-end-for-uk-poor/

An attempt at a poem about the world 🌎 

Can you help me?

It’s just the world has changed and I am not sure I recognise it anymore 

At what point did the sea

Pure and cleansing 

Begin washing up the bodies of those escaping war?
When did it begin, I ask

That the notion of fearing and berating those of another skin colour 

Became the norm 

“No dogs, No blacks, no Irish”
Is this soon set in stone?

“No dogs, no Muslims, no refugees”

At what point will the world stop turning?

When will bombs stop falling in the name of peace?

Never has the shakesperian phrase been so true

That there are indeed daggers in men’s smiles

They gleam in the mouths of corrupt politicians 

Who put money before the masses

Can you help me please?

For I, like many

Am lost and afraid

[apologies, it’s been awhile. Third year of uni is tooo busy. I just sort of jotted this out!]

Another one of those posts about femmemism

I am a feminist.

There I said it.

No, not the men-hating, bra-burning, radical version.
I’m the my-Vagina-doesn’t-come-with-predestined-life-instructions version.

So, here is a very short introduction to what feminism is.

 (Side note: If the word vagina makes you uncomfortable, I am not sorry) 
It shouldn’t be that as soon as I was born, and the midwife or whoever shouted ‘it’s a girl’, that my life from that point was constructed for me. Me or anyone with female reproductive organs (that’s last bit is a description for the ones who cringe at the V word).

It’s ridiculous that in 2016- when we’re supposed to be fully operational in terms of equality- that women are still treated inferior to men.
Now for me in a Western European country, that might be that I don’t get paid the same as a man, for doing the same job.
For someone in a different country, it might be that they are denied any form of education

For some, it means being married off because you’re a girl, so that’s what you’re there for

For those reasons, I’m a difference femmemist (yes, there are different splinter groups, like any ideology)

Difference feminism is basically where there’s an understanding that different women experience different forms of oppression, and they need to be tackled.

A married, White, middle class woman isn’t going to have most of the same struggles of a single, working class, Black woman.

So people might say “Yeah so we (Western Europe) don’t need femmenism anymore.

Uh, yeah we do- 

  1. because there are still women in Western Europe who grow up with the idea that all they are here for is to find a nice man and settle down with 2.5 kids
  2. There are still girls in the world as young as 8 marrying people 20 years their senior, because there parents dont see a need to educate them, like they do with their sons.
  3. We still have this idea in all societies where girls are the caring, motherly person- and if someone doesn’t fit this, like a woman saying they don’t want children, people are horrified or disgusted (it’s their body, and their life why do you care so much?!) 

So my point is, feminism is still needed, because these crazy notions that men are made and destined for one thing, and women are made and destined for the other, is daft.

So you can be a man and be a feminist too- anyone can be a femminst- a normal femminst- you don’t have a bra to burn

If you think it’s crazy/silly/outrageous that the above happens, then you’re a femmenist.

I won’t be burning my bras over it anytime soon, anyway? Just trying to challenge it instead.

Dunno about you?
Becca 🙂

Terrorism, racism and other shit things…

On November 2016, in light of the terrorist attacks in France, I wrote this post on my Facebook:

I feel like it’s important in light of recent events for me to say this. People can fall out with me over it. 

It probably won’t change their minds, but I would like them to hear me out and know where I stand, to avoid awkward discussions later.

Muslims/terrorists/ISIS are not the same thing.

Some of you might say “How can it not be Islam doing it, when it’s called Islamic state!”

I’m fully aware of what it’s called, but those people hide behind their religion, just like the KKK.

Hitler and Stalin were both raised Christian.
I know a number of Muslims, and none of them are terrorists or secret members of ISIS, thank you very much.

Some I went to college with, some I worked with on a placement, and two even educated me in 3/4 of my A levels! (Two of which were A’s)

I get that’s it’s hard to look beyond the fact that many of the most heavily reported terrorist attacks are committed by supposed “Muslims”

But you have your own mind to go and educate yourselves about the situation, before you pass judgement on it.

In a way, I admire a Muslim’s dedication to their faith (the ones I have met myself, who are GOOD people) since I am supposed to be Christian but the only time I attend church is when someone in my family gets christened or it’s their communion…

You might say “Yeah but look at the Quran! Look at what it says Becca! They’re all evil!”

All religions have ridiculous, awful verses in them. As a Christian I’m supposed to go about my day, stoning divorced women to death, and converting or killing heathens, to name just 2 examples…

But I don’t because that’s ridiculous.

Some of you might bring up shariah law.

Fine, please tell me the last time you followed the 10 commandants word for word. God gives Christians lots of crazy commands too, like stoning women who have sex before marriage- it’s 2015, it doesn’t mean you have to follow it.

Have any of you, who are so against these people, ever had a normal conversation with one?
I’m guessing not!

I took a religion and philosophy A level taught by- yup- a Muslim, where I studied the Quran, the Bible and the Torah to see how much they fit with or went against modern life.

None of them came close!

So, do you see me indoctrinated by that person who taught me and had me studying the Quran, ready to go and carry out a suicide bombing?
Nope. You don’t, because very few Muslims are actually like that, just like not all Christians are the westboro baptist church, or how not all white Anglo Saxon Protestants are the KKK.

Hell*, it wasn’t that long ago when we had “No dogs, no blacks, no Irish” on the doors of buildings up and and down the country
00.3% is the figure out at the moment I believe, for how many Muslims are extremist. Everyone points out that out of the Muslim population, that’s a large figure but all of them would never combine forces because they all belong to different fractions of Islam. 

There’s Christian extremists in America, who stand at around 15% of the population, but no one bothers about that?

If it were true that all Muslims are evil terrorists, and the Muslim population wanted to take over the world, like some sort of evil world domination group, they would have done it by now!

Finally, not all people who originate from the East are Muslim- there are areas like with any other globalised country where religious pluralism is the norm, just like the UK- they are not all terrorists, in the same sense not all Germans are Nazis. 

Can you imagine if we all still said Germans were Nazis?

Some of you might say “But this is Christian Britain! We need our country back!”
While you sit there knowing you probably had sex before marriage, take contraception, and wear clothes made of more than 1 material….and then you’re supposed to love your neighbour….

And yet you tarnish all people from one religion as demonic people, a cancer ect.
Oh I’m sorry, how “Christian” of you.

Also Christianity is still the most dominant religion in the UK, even if it does have crazy rules (I do not want to be subservient to a husband who is free to do what he wants to me because we’re married. Nope!)
“We need to close our boarders!”

Many terrorists now are home-grown, so that’s not solving the issue, it’d keep us a little safer, in a way, for a few days max. We rely so much on other countries for trade it’s not a viable solution.

If anyone wishes to argue about it, I will happily post links to texts you can read on the subject. Or, you know, play a drinking game of all the passages that say the horrible things Christians should do to others in the Bible (keep an ambulance on standby, you might need one)

Your religion is not what guides you to do something wrong- it’s there as a mechanism for when times get tough, you have God/Allah (they’re the same person) to turn to.

 It’s how man takes the words and twists them, to justify their actions that causes terrorism. To become one, a person must already feel marginalised by society. 

How many school shootings in America do we know were committed by a white male who had mental health issues and dysfunctional family setup?

So, it’s not just religion that causes terrorism.

All religions have had people manipulate it as a means to commit terrorism.

Muslims are not “those fucking demon scum” Because they have names, families, and normal, everyday lives to get on with like the rest of us

When I look around social media, the Muslim community is just as devastated about this as you are. Because now they’re going to be subject to even more hate and prejudice, just because of the actions of a few delusional scumbags.


If you still feel Muslims are the root of all evil, do not engage with them at all, and simply leave them be!

But next time you want a taxi, or a doctor to save your life, or for someone to educate your child, or someone to serve you in a supermarket, you’re going to struggle! 🙂

*oops, blasphemy

I feel this is even more relevant now. I’d been working on a blog post on feminism, but it’s more important to address terrorism.
I come from a town drenched in racial tension. We’ve had riots, EDL demos, a past wave of support for the BNP and now UKIP. We live completely seperate lives: Muslims and Christians, whites and Asians.
Yeah I understand it’s idealistic to expect everyone to go skipping into the sunset, exchanging interfaith dialogue.
But what about education?

How about pure academic study of religious texts?
It’s nothing to spend a few lessons showing students passages from the Bible, the Quran, and the Torah.
And agreeing on how at least half their contents doesn’t fit with modern life!
Use your rational thought, no matter how religious, or what religion  you are.

Becca 🙂