Alice Wong Profile picture
May 21, 2018 67 tweets 50 min read
It's the incomparable @CJ_the_Actor!! 🙌 #UnitedShades #DeafTalent
My mom is scrambling to find her glasses right now so she can watch #UnitedShades...HILARIOUS
The disability community is not a monolith. There are worlds within worlds each w/ unique identities, languages, practices, and cultures.

We are part of every community.

There's no way to cover everything in a single episode of tv but it’s a start. #UnitedShades
I do appreciate the word ‘disability’ and ‘disabled’ being used in #UnitedShades. There’s such negative connotation around these words but they are being reclaimed by many.

Here’s an article about @LCarterLong's #SayTheWord hashtag:…
Here are 2 terms to share with ya'll:
Supercrip and inspiration porn.

Supercrip describes an extraordinary disabled person who 'transcends' their Steven Hawking and the other folks mentioned. It's a harmful stereotype… #UnitedShades
Inspiration porn: media coverage that finds ordinary activities by disabled people as extraordinary or inspirational to non-disabled audiences. It's tiresome, people.

A must-watch TED talk by the late Stella Young:… #UnitedShades
Hey ya'll! I'm Alice Wong and cannot believe I am on #UnitedShades. Here's a little bit about my background:…

As a proud nerd, here's my origin story for @TheNerdsofColor:…

And yes, I love all things X-Men. #MutantPride!
For folks who are unaware, the independent living movement started in the SF Bay Area. Ed Roberts was one leader of many. An excellent interview with him:…

More oral histories from disability rights leaders:…
As someone who grew up in Indiana, I am living totes living my best life right now in the SF Bay Area. Glad I got a chance to show @wkamaubell the @EdRobertsCampus in Berkeley, CA, a hub for the disability community. Come visit if you get the chance! #UnitedShades
Hoo whee, it's weird to see your work flash before your eyes in that intro about me. I had a once-in-a-lifetime experience meeting President Obama via telepresence robot:…
The backstory on how it happened:… #UnitedShades
Yeah, Twitter can be 💩 at times, but I gotta give a shout-out to @FilmEssaying who Tweeted at @wkamaubell for the @Denzealots podcast ep. He's the one who recommended me to be on their episode discussing The Bone Collector #UnitedShades
That's when @wkamaubell and I became Twitter friends 😊. Our convo was hilarious and I kept it 💯 about disability representation in film. I got my opinions!
FYI, There was a transcript but can't find it in the link #Denzealots #UnitedShades
Fun fact: did you know that community-based #Medicaid services are optional in all states BUT nursing home care is mandated? Depending on where you live, some disabled people have no choice but institutions just because they need help with their daily activities #UnitedShades
Clearly, I'm not talking about all disabled people are on #Medicaid but for me I rely on it because isn't any insurance out there that will cover the personal assistance services I need. This safety net program is my lifeline… #UnitedShades
I got a chance to interview my friends @andraealavant & @dominickevans and their experiences as Medicaid recipients in Ohio & Maryland and the numerous barriers they face:…

And we're not the only ones. This is serious stuff. #UnitedShades
The Disability Integration Act is a bill that aims to give us the right to live in the community:

To learn more about #Medicaid, go to @KaiserFamFound

And the Community Living Policy Center: #UnitedShades
One major issue are new work requirements by some states for people on Medicaid. Super problematic. Lots of disabled people will lose coverage because they don't fit under the criteria…

One person’s story:…
I just want to clarify that productivity/labor does not determine a person's worth. While I can work at this moment, it makes me super salty that I am held back by guidelines that keep me at near poverty levels because of my care needs. #UnitedShades
Real talk: I cannot have more than $2000 in assets. I cannot earn more than 2.5 times the federal poverty level (I'm in a Medicaid working disabled program). I can do SO much more w/o these asset limitations. BTW: I'm not trying to pull a fast one on the govt #UnitedShades
I get that there are policy makers who want to make sure they prevent fraud/abuse. This attitude unfortunately forces poor, older & disabled people having to prove themselves deserving all the damn time. It's an incredible amount of emotional labor & stress #UnitedShades
And these kinds of regulations hurt many people in the disability community. Folks can't marry without risking a decrease in their benefits/services. Check this piece out by @dominickevans:… #UnitedShades
At times I feel conflicted about using the word 'vulnerable' to describe our community. But I believe there is strength when we talk about our vulnerabilities in the face of systemic oppression. I just don't want folks to think we're pitiful or powerless, okee? 😘 #UnitedShades
Right now the entire safety net is under threat. There was the attempted repeal of the ACA last year and new work requirements for #Medicaid and #SNAP (food stamp) recipients. Follow @DREDF & @TalkPoverty for policy info to start. Lots of great orgs out there #UnitedShades
504-sit ins was a major moment in civil rights. Most people never heard of it. It should be taught in high school. This is just one of many amazing moments in US disability history. Check out @LongmoreInst's online exhibit:
You also gotta check out this episode of @DrunkHistory that covers the 504 sit-ins featuring disability rights activist @judithheumann played by @ALISTROKER.

It is hee-larious AND includes multiple disabled & Deaf actors!…

Yeah, that’s right. The #ADA is under threat w/ the ADA Education & Reform Act of 2017. It passed in the House and is in the Senate now. There may not be enough votes to pass it but it’s not dead. Gotta stay vigilant.… #UnitedShades
#RepresentationMatters SO damn much. In culture, politics, media. We deserve to see ourselves everywhere. There's a lot of talent out there:
Disabled actors @shannondevido & @RyanJHaddad in my latest podcast ep:… #UnitedShades
Here's a piece I wrote about the Golden Globes, disability representation in entertainment and why the status quo pisses me off…

There are a lot of other folks writing/talking about these issues too. But who's listening? #UnitedShades
This is the part about ableism and ableist language. Here's a piece about why you shouldn't call Trump 'crazy':…

And here's an excellent piece by @sesmith on ableism & mass shootings:…
If you are curious about ableism and ableist language, here are a few resources:
Video by @annieelainey…

@autistichoya on ableism as a form of violence:…

I'd like to also share 2 other projects I'm involved in: #CripTheVote a nonpartisan online movement encouraging the political participation of disabled people w/ co-partners @GreggBeratan & @AndrewPulrang
And @DisabledWriters: a resource to help editors connect with disabled writers and journalists created by @sesmith with @VilissaThompson and me as co-partners. Hire disabled writers! Improve your coverage on all issues! #UnitedShades
It's @JohnBrianKelly from Boston! Yayyyy! #UnitedShades

I remember going on cobblestone sidewalks in my power chair. Not pleasant!

Sidewalks & public spaces are still inaccessible for many. Not just in Boston. Recent case in Portland:…
The thing to remember is that accessible cities and spaces benefit EVERYONE.
It's not an 'extra' thing. It should be built-in as the default.

Look at the folks with strollers and carts using curb cuts. Look at all kinds of people using closed captions on TVs.
I see @ColleenFlangan and @Sneschalmerz in the protest footage!

More about @NationalADAPT the group, along with many others, that laid their bodies on the line in multiple direct actions stopping the repeal of the ACA last year in DC…

There were protests of the film Me Before You by disabled people. Here are some articles about it and why many people objected to the framing of disability as 'worse than death'… #UnitedShades
Assisted dying, physician-assisted suicide, whatever you call it, there are bills all over the US proposing this option. Interview featuring my friend @ingwongward on her end-of-life options:… #UnitedShades
The ableist views about disability as one of primarily suffering and without dignity is tied to lack of representation of the lived experiences of all disabled people. Yes, there's suffering & pain but there's joy & pleasure too. #UnitedShades
CN: suicide, suicidal ideation, ableism, mental health

Here's a series of videos by the @Live_On_Project featuring disabled people about their lives, struggles, and why they want to Live On: #UnitedShades
Back to representation in culture, the film Me Before You is based on a novel and there is a glut of tropes/stereotypes about disability in lit. Kenny Fries created the Fries Test on this topic:… #UnitedShades
And here's a list of novels compiled by @nicolaz that passes the Fries Test if anyone is interested in fiction with decent disabled characters/narratives… #UnitedShades
It's @jilly_peppa!! I'm a huge fan of her work. Gorgeous and fierce! #UnitedShades
.@jilly_peppa on the need for representation--young disabled kids (and all folks) need to see the whole range of what's possible out there. #UnitedShades #RepresentationMatters
One thing I learned from the blind community--there are lots of people who have some vision. Blindness doesn’t mean total absence of vision. Here's a link describing some common misconceptions about blind people:… #UnitedShades
Appreciate @wkamaubell's disclaimer about his simulation using a white cane with Liz. @emily_ladau writes about why these kinds of exercises don't really work:…

Another piece on how you can still be an ally:…
This is what I love about universal design principles:
-Maximize the usability for all people to the greatest extent possible possible
-Holistic approach focused on usability
-Planning and practices at the outset rather than retroactively
Apple products are examples of great universal design. Here's a presentation by Carolyn Cranfill who said accessibility should be:

-Easily reached or obtained
-Easily used
-Easily understood

I really dig this approach.…
I love and use all kinds of technology. Exoskeletons seem fantastic (hello, Transformers!) on the surface but it raises some interesting questions. Here's an excellent article on the perils and promises of exoskeletons by @roseveleth:…
Related to advances in tech, advances in human gene editing is another issue that will impact the future of disabled people. Captioned video by me on this: Lots of bioethical/political implications #UnitedShades
For example, Tiffany mentioned wanting to be eye-level with people and going to a job interview w/ an exoskeleton. What about changing the default and having bipedal people meet us wheelchair users where we are?

Walking is overrated, ya'll!
Also, what will happen to the people who cannot afford exoskeletons who will be left behind? Or the social pressure/discrimination toward people who chose not to use exoskeletons?
It's @CJ_the_Actor!!! He IS legend.

Here's an interview of CJ by @HabenGirma…

I really loved @CJ_the_Actor in Baby Driver. If you haven't seen it yet, check it out. He was the heart of the film.

Article on CJ's process of getting the role in Baby Driver and working with director Edgar Wright:…

#UnitedShades #DeafTalent
Police violence toward D/deaf and disabled people is a super serious issue. The statistics are horrific, especially for D/deaf and disabled people of color. Video and toolkit from @NCILAdvocacy by @keri_gray & @notthreefifths… #UnitedShades
For more: @behearddc Helping Educate to Advance the Rights of Deaf Communities

By @HTCSolidarity: Disability Solidarity: Completing the “Vision for Black Lives”…

Support this documentary film by @TheTwoEssences: BLACK AND DEAF IN AMERICA: OUR LIVES MATTER, TOO about Black Deaf people impacted by police brutality, racism, black erasure and oppression in the educational system.… #UnitedShades
Here's a powerful piece by @VilissaThompson remembering Korryn Gaines:
"Being a Black disabled woman in America is a sheer act of defiance."…

Leroy Moore, @kriphopnation, is an activist, musician & writer who has written about police violence & disabled people for years. Here's a documentary he produced with director Emmett Thrower

Interview with Leroy:…
And here's a @DisVisibility podcast episode I recorded about police violence & disabled people with @MahdiaLynn & @notthreefifths…
Disability & D/deaf identity is complicated and yet it’s not. Accept and respect how people self-identify. Do not police them on what language is acceptable, especially if you are non-disabled. #UnitedShades
There are lots of people with disabilities that will never identify as a ‘disabled’ or ‘person with a disability’ and that’s their prerogative. Everyone has their own process. It took me a while to work up to a sense of disability pride. #UnitedShades
It was fun live-tweeting #UnitedShades with all of you! I hope the reaction from the disability community will show @CNNOriginals the need and hunger out there for stories by us and for us.
This one episode is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the rich disability & Deaf communities out there. An entire series could cover our stories for multiple seasons. #UnitedShades
Because I believe in the universe, I'm just going to put it out there and say I'd love to consult/produce/write for a show by and about disabled people one of these days. *cough, cough* @netflix @CNNOriginals #UnitedShades
If you want to learn more about the @DisVisibility project check out my website:

My podcast:

And if you wanna support disability culture and media, my patreon page:

Always. Be. Hustling. 😭


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