The Stream

Disability and the US election: Part I

Mocked by a presidential candidate, Americans with disabilities make US election rallying call for rights.

People with disabilities are the world’s largest minority, according to the United Nations, yet their culture and concerns rarely receive mainstream media attention. The 2016 US election changed that when Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump mocked a reporter with disabilities, thrashing around the stage, pretending he, too, was physically impaired. The incident shocked voters, becoming a watershed moment.


In this groundbreaking discussion, The Stream teams up with #CripTheVote activists to host a live Twitter chat and internationally televised discussion on how the election has changed the conversation on disability, and the challenges people with disabilities face getting to the polls.


In the United States, one in six eligible voters has a disability, making their vote a potentially powerful force. Energised by Trump’s mockery, which he denies doing, and capitalising on the public’s awareness of disability issues, Americans with disabilities have turned the 2016 election into a rallying call for greater rights and representation.


On this episode of The Stream, we speak with:

Lawrence Carter-Long @LCarterLong
Spokesperson, National Council on Disability

Vilissa Thompson @VilissaThompson 
Disability rights consultant, writer

Alice Wong @DisVisibility 
Founder, Disability Visibility Project

Andrew Pulrang @AndrewPulrang
Disability rights advocate 

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