the Hunger Games: Thoughts

What I’d like to do now is review the Hunger Games book and movie thing.  I was watching a little bit of the Hunger Games this morning, thinking of how best to approach Mockingjay, the third book in the trilogy.  If you really wanna know how Katniss is, she is a mess by that book.  Peeta is a real mess.  He’s so much of a mess it’s not even funny.  He was tortured about a rebellion he didn’t know about, so the capitol decided to make him hate Katniss, which made Katniss almost dead by the middle of the third book.  Which is it gonna be, President Snow?  You want to kill Katniss?  You’re nuts, I kept saying.  When you read Mockingjay, you feel like you’re there with Katniss for all the things she’s going through: for every hospitalization, every gun drill, etc.  It gets better.  Prim, Katniss’s sister, trains as a medic.  She’s good too.  Prim’s mom, also Katniss’s mom, is really nice, and she’s also a medic of sorts.  district 13 is amazingly militarized as we learn by the beginning of Mockingjay.  It’s amazing.  But I must say, if you read this book, you’re going to feel like it’s over half the time.  But it doesn’t work that way.  I”m sure that President Snow has to die at some point.  This whole thing with the hunger Games makes me sick.  I would never do that if I ruled the world.  Question to all my readers: what would you do differently than our current government if you ruled the world?  I don’t know, but I know that I’d champion a few causes here and there.

1. I’d make it so that disabled folks could get jobs.  I’d hire Jason Milyo as my IT person in the white house, of course.

2. Guardianship would no longer be an option to “reign in” a disabled person’s fiery spirit.  That isn’t the way to do it.  IF I were ruthless enough, I’d execute anyone who even thought of getting a guardianship over a disabled person.  But I’m not that ruthless, and execution should never be allowed.  I’d end the Death Penalty, so that just won’t happen.

3. I’d never sacrifice human beings, and I’d be against any form of animal sacrifice as well.  I’d have to pass ordinances in all cities, federal laws, etc. banning all forms of human and animal sacrifices for selfish reasons.  IF you practiced Wicca, for instance, you could not sacrifice a goat or two for the new year.  You’d have to find another way to celebrate.  Hey, I’d do this so that religions could evolve and anyone could practice anything without fear.

4. I’d be tough on puppy mills.  Yes, I’d be so tough on puppy mills that if anyone is caught puppy milling, and oh, Theresa, are you reading this?  I’d throw the bad breeder in jail for life.  I’d increase the value on animals in this nation.  In the whole world, there’d be an end to animal cruelty.  I’d never allow bestiality of course, and if any man slept with his guide dog, I’d kill him.  Well, banning the Death Penalty would not go so far.  But I’d go so far as to throw a man like this guy Allan, name not his actual name, in jail for committing bestiality with his guide dog.  I have a Canadian friend who loves his dogs, but if you really cared about your dogs, you would never go astray and sleep with the dog sexually.  I’d ban that practice ever more.

5. Education would be transformed.  There are lots of things Ii’d do to education to make the economy better.  Read the Smart Kids, Bad Schools by Brian Crosby.  He rocks!  Love his book, and he loves young people.  HE has a lot of ideas in his book from field trips to Fridays off that I’d use.  The only thing is that I don’t know how much he knows about blind students not reading Braille.  Uh, Mr. Crosby, you don’t know that blind people do not have a very good prospect for being literate or employed.  Wheelchair students have to be able to access school too.  I’d make it my mission to not only transform the way the regular ed students are educated, but to transform the special ed students’ education.  I’d change the labeling system so that special ed would cover true disabilities only.  IF you have Learning Disabilities, I’d work with those students.  Yes, but blindness is more important because of the 90% illiteracy rate.  We’re supposed to be able to read Braille, and Braille is the only thing that makes us literate.  I’d never forget that.

But what do the Panem rulers do to control its people?  Bad, bad, bad.  Tributes and sacrifices should never be allowed.  Fighting to the death should never be allowed.  Denying districts food and water would never go far with anyone here in this real world.  I’d have to do something ensuring all children have an equal access to the best education ever!  That’s my promise, and I will keep that promise.

Took Medicaid long enough.

Dear Medicaid,

As a poor blind woman who can’t get a job or health insurance, I find it odd that now after years of this bullcrap that “we don’t cover dental work”, you’re finally going to do dental stuff.  I needed a dentist in Denver so I could get the heck away from my parents and all that stuff.  I wanted to take better care of my teeth, but oh no, you didn’t provide dental care except “extractions only.”  Bullcrap.  I don’t just loathe insurance companies who make you pay hundred dollar copays, I loathe having to pay those things because I’m blind, a woman, etc.  Thank you, Obama, for making it possible for me to get my teeth cleaned.  Preventative care is better than having to go in and treat the symptoms much later.  Ok, let me move on.

Medicaid, if you noticed, however, some people have behavioral or mental illnesses because parents don’t know anything better than to abuse their kids, or sometimes the kids themselves are antisocial.  I’m not antisocial, thank God, but to leave me abandoned and no natural father to my name?  Give me a break.  Ok, I’ll say later why I wrote that.  But I said preventative care, right?  That means, Medicaid, you must cover shots for my kids, and maybe you should be billed for physical activity like Tai Kwon Do because it’s good for the kids, and if I have a blind kid, at least not the whole “Let’s Move” stuff with the ball sports.  I hate ball sports, doing them that is.  They make me sick.  Ball sports make me so sick if I do them, I’d rather pop the ball and vomit all over the backyard rather than be told to do them.  I’ll never forget the time I was registering for freshman high school classes with my parents, and they were told I shouldn’t have to do phys ed.  What?  After seeing Blake do tai kwon do, I beg to differ, but if there waqs a martial arts training option, I’d do it rather than a stupid basketball class.  Why should I do basketball or football or whatever if I don’t have the skill to manipulate a stupid ball?  Tai kwon do is just your body, you, the floor, whatever.  And this is coming from someone who IS NOT a fighter.  I’ve seen Blake try it on someone, no doubt because that person deserved it.  Well, lesson here is don’t mess with Blake or me or you’ll get a nice little dent in your butt by way of a kick or something.  But medicaid, should you pay for physical activities the kids need so that they can stop being mentally ill?  Physical activity should be seen as preventative care, too, you know.  It took you long enough to see the benefit of dental cleaning, so why can’t you see the benefit of karate?  Come on, do you know how much money Blake and I WON’T be able to spend on the karate or physical training of my children?  Blake and I need to be able to prevent mental illness, something that I couldn’t have gotten because of the cruel abuse.  I’ll go ahead and explain myself now.

First, should Medicaid pay for unwed mother’s care?  Yes.  Especially if you were raped and pregnant as a result of a creepy bum on the street.  Half the time, you know who attacked you though.  If I was as brave as Cathy and killed him with the gun I could carry as personal protection, then a baby would not be in the question.  But oh no, I’m blind, and being blind, I can’t carry a gun because of your stupid ideas and attitudes toward not only the blind, but mildly mentally ill.  This is something unmanageable to some people.  But I’d never kill anybody who didn’t cross me.  What kind of provocation could make me do it?  Well, you touch me when I told you no three times, right?  And you’re a creepy bum who said, “I want sex.”  Well, if you cross me, I’ll shoot you because it’s cheaper than having to have baby screaming in my ear, “Mommy, gimme a cake.”  I’m not dragging an ill fated toddler through a grocery store, WIC approved foods in hand.  WIC?  Ewwwww.  I don’t want to think about it right now.  I’d rather spend thousands less on firearms, honestly.  That or just say I could count on my dear sweet Blake to protect me for absolutely nothing.  Blake could kick the dude in the balls, and then leave him to lie in pain, wondering why he didn’t get some.  Well, you crossed me and Blake, so you will get the pain of knowing you tried to do it.

But alas! If I became an unwed mother because of someone else who didn’t do the right thing, I’d need care.  Period.  Medicaid needs to pay for that stuff, and the baby too.  When the baby is born, though, the laundry list of things begin to ebb and flow: diapers, bottles, formula, physical care, etc.  Shots, dentists, doctors, etc.  Then, there’s the idea that your baby could be a special needs baby, a baby that could need a hundred million surgeries to survive, an IV fluid thing to stay alive, and all that stuff.  IF I don’t get off trileptol, baby could get neural tube defects, neurological deformities, autism, etc.  Who knows?  The baby could be bad news for the rapist, and I’d sue him right and left for the baby’s care and such, whether he has the money or not.  I’d justify the suit as, “You raped, so you pay.”  But Blake would never do that, so I would hope by the time we agree to have kids, those kids are healthy, happy, and all that.  But even still, I was born to a single mom, and that single mother didn’t know how to survive except with job money.  Thank God she had college under her belt, and then she got a job.  Not all unwed mothers are like that.  Mom, you really needed, however, to take better care of me and yourself.  Just because I was blind does not make it ok to abuse and abandon for hours, your place with me was compromised because of the job.  Experiments are wrong.  I don’t want to be anything like you, in fact.  I want to have the babies in a stable home with a married husband and Blake and all that.  Blake would be the husband, and he’d be the best and most loyal father ever.  I told him once he was that responsible.

Should Medicaid cover for mentally ill children?  Well, with the prevalence of preschool depression, yes.  I’ve read an article or two about preschool depression, and preventative care could work, but early intervention works wonders.  Yes, Autistic babies are more prevalent, but why?  I’d have to go to LaVonnya Gardner, who is autistic and her daughter Bree for some help on parenting an autistic child.  I want the best for my children, and I could care less, even if my mom says my kid is weird. Danny and his kids might be out and better than mine, but my brother could also ostracize my children or child for being autistic, Down’s Syndrome, etc.  Yes, even if my baby has Down’s, I’m not leaving this child to die in the hills as in Gathering Blue.  Oh, by the way, I’m thinking of seeing the Giver movie if it’s in theaters sometime in September or a couple weeks after it opens.  That’s just me though.

The Giver raises the question of whether “newchildren” should be “released”, or killed as we later learn, due to their weight.  The answer is obvious, and Mrs. Mary Lou Miller, my English teacher, had a great analytical essay question about it when we finished it.  Mrs. Miller was awesome, though I admit her handwriting sucked.  I enjoyed reading her handwriting, and she had vocal opposition to a lot of stuff, but our debates in class were obvious, and I could care less what anyone says at this point, Mrs. Miller standing on her desk was never seen.  But oh captain, my captain, whatever the case may be, she’s probably staring around the corner.  She’ll probably see this movie, and maybe even show it to her daughter.  Maybe someone who actually includes this book in their curriculum will show it.  Using weight as an excuse to kill newchildren is wrong in my opinion.  In the same communities, there’s no such thing as blind children.  Blake and me?  We’d be dead because of blindness in both the Giver and Gathering Blue, and health insurance or not, we’d be gone in the field of leaving.

That’s just me though.  Medicaid, you took too long to get dental care, so look at my smile.  I should put a picture of me up here, but still I won’t.


A Sick Day for once

I’ve had many times like this, but I got sick and didn’t realize it.  Maybe it was a good thing the paratransit left me stranded on the parking lot sidewalk, and snow was on the ground.  Later, in my apartment, I eneded up getting weak and sick.  Blake was all, “Oh no.”  I threw up three times, and it wasn’t fun.  Well, I feel a lot better now, but my arms are a tad weaker as I write this.  I had a funny revelation.

JoAnn Owens, Jason, my ex boyfriend, his mom right?  Well, JoAnn was in one of the weirdest dreams I had.  No offense, but this dream was about her having a heart attack and almost dying in bed.  Jason, my ex, ran to JoAnn, an old and graying woman with a husky voice and a sweet Southern accent, and watched everything unfold.  Then he calls me up on Skype and says, “Beth, Mom’s dying.”  I’m like, “What?”  Jason is weak and skinny as a wire, not someone I’d trust, dark brown hair and no eyes at all.  Girls scream when they see him, and I have done my darndest to love him, but to no avail.  HE could not love me the way I loved him.  He abused all I gave him, and thus we failed.  I asked JoAnn in the dream, “What can I do for you?”  She replied, “Oh, I don’t know.  What ever you do for Jason is good enough for me.”  Holding her hand, I told her I was sorry I ever tried to be in a relationship with Jason, tried to do what I did and so on.  I told her I wasn’t a control freak, hat even Big Jason Speir, her boyfriend, could not take better care of Jason the way I planned to.  In the dream, even Big J. had a broken heart and was enraged at his girl’s heart disease.  I stood by JoAnn’s deathbed, then said, “Goodbye.  I’ll tell you what, I’ll take better care of Jason than anybody ever could.”  The dream fast forwards to a few years later, with Jason in a nursing home for young people, me visiting him and checking on him, then he dies too.  Why the hell did I have such a weird dream?  Some dreams I’ve noticed are forebodings.  Joseph, the technicolored coat wearer in the Biblical stories, had dreams and the Pharaoh hired him to interpret those dreams.  Like, for instance, that of the Chief Cupbearer.  He told Joseph about the dream, and Joseph said, “This is what it all means.”  It all came true, and so did the one of the baker and others in Joseph’s dungeon cellar.  For me, dreams are often white, blurry, and forgotten.  But this is not forgotten for some strange reason.  Blake was in it too, standing beside me as I cried and wept at JoAnn’s deathbed, telling her that Jason was fine and that he’ll be ok.  Amber, Jason’s sister, was married at the time of this dream.  JoAnn said someone could take care of Amber, but I said, “Don’t trust Jason to do a thing.”  A dog gone thing.  Poor Jason.  Poor sweet Jason, the Jason I knew was a sweetheart.  Someone I thought I could trust, but then he turned sour.  Sour as lemonade without sugar.  What can I say now!  Mrs. Owens had quite a time, and I will never forget the time I was looking at a ferris wheel, a Christmas decoration, and saw the animals there, heard it play.  JoAnn’s whole house was decked out in Christmas.  She had a huge set of trees, even in the bedrooms, then she had Santas and Twas the Night Before Christmas all over the place.  Tell me, dear reader, should I overdo that?  I don’t know.

My First Amendment Experience

I’ve been impeded from invoking the First Amendment to free speech, and boy it wasn’t fun.  It was sometime in 2009, and I had established a fan club on Facebook, something about a Read Gainsford Fan Club.  Well, the point was not to harass the dude, it was a matter of honor.  I thought Dr. Gainsford would appreciate that.  The few things people appreciate about me!  I have also been banned from having a first amendment to practice certain kinds of religions.  Yes, Blake, I know, if I’m not equally yoked, I can’t be with you.  But when I was with someone else, or attempting to be with someone else, I honestly fell off the deep end when, yes, my parents said I couldn’t see him.  I wished to leave the Catholic church, and all Christian churches for that matter.  I was on the verge of practicing Wicca.  Serves my parents right for telling me my First Amendment right to speak my mind isn’t valid.  Well, the reason why I post this is because I feel what I said about the guns and firearms is a perfectly valid point.  Let’s begin from the beginning, shall we?

WE can’t let guns into the hands of the mentally ill, the severely mentally ill, especially ones who claim to have a “sixth sense”, ones who claim they hear voices saying, “Kill.”  If that’s the case, then I swear, we should never allow them to touch a firearm in their lives.  Why?  Look at James Hulmes, the dude who shot up the movie theater in Aurora.  Someone shot up a shopping mall.  Fort Hood in Texas was shot up twice.  Why?  Because, well, there’s a pattern.  The people who did the shootings were mentally incompetent to use firearms.  Blake’s brother was murdered by a girl who, as all other shooters do, killed herself.  She was mentally ill, on drugs, etc.  Could her health records have saved the man’s life?  Could we have kept a better eye on her?  And worse, she’s sighted.  Sighted women in a place where guns are revered as the weapon of choice do not mix.  And Blake could be in grave danger if he dated a sighted girl in Arizona with any of the following traits:

1. Sight.  Sight would allow her to play the “You can’t see me, I can” game.  My parents have played that with me multiple times.

2. Rapid mood swings and actual threats to kill herself or Blake.  If the girl threatens his life and has sight, compound that with the presence of firearms, and you have disaster.  More to come.

3. No treatment or way to get help.  Camp Verde, while it does have a mental health clinic, is like a lot of places where mental health is a stigma.  I’m sick and tired of mentally ill folks having a stigma against them.  I take medications for that stuff, and it works too well..  My weight has skyrocketed, and I can’t fit into any of my clothes.  It’s amazingly weird to think about it, but being on some of the medications is helpful.  But honestly, my frustrations are kept there, deep down, and it’s so frustrating to not be able to see your boyfriend when his own dear mother is about to fall off the deep end if something isn’t done in her name.  But the stigma against mental health issues is paramount in the way guns are lifted in the air and revered as a “toy” of choice.  While there’s nothing wrong with guns at all, there is something wrong with putting it in the hands of the wrong person.  What about a background check?  So what?  I’d never kill a person with the gun.  IF I knew the purpose of the weapon, I’d use it accordingly.  Canes with swords?  Now that’s just weird.

4. Dominance and constant complaint of suicidal thoughts and without meds, the ability to hallucinate.  I’m sorry, but I can name someone who could also hallucinate and hear stuff in strange places.  Phillip Garrido kidnapped and impregnated a girl called Jaycee Lee Dugard.  Miss Dugard now has to do therapy and other mental health stuff with herself and two kids to look after.  She was set free by California police, but not before she had those two little girls.  Phillip used her as a sex object, but also had crazy stuff going on.  I would never have given Phillip the right to use a tazer, which was the epoch in his ability to kidnap Jaycee.  Phillip had all kinds of resources, including Nancy, his wife.  Anyone who claims that they are hearing voices through ANYTHING is crazy in my book.  And I don’t hear those voices.  Auditory hallucinations should have given people like Phillip a diagnosis of schizophrenia before the kidnapping should have taken place.  A girl with all of those above symptoms and so forth should NEVER think about dating Blake.  Her symptoms, untreated, could spell disaster for Blake and grief, a double dose of grief, for his mother, who suffers a good deal now.  I have a weird feeling she needs to go to a Grief Group.  Nothing like the feeling of telling the set of your peers, “My son was captured/killed/murdered by so and so and it feels horrible.”  The same goes for me.  I can say, “I hate being blind in some places.  You know, those moments where the waitress orders around you, not to you?”  Nothing like those same blind or grieving individuals echoing back, “Yes, we hear you.”  A group for support.  A hotline for peer counseling.  It all makes sense.  As much as philosophy at CCB, Colorado Center for the Blind, seemed a joke, it was more of a “support group.”  Why learn the NFB philosophy?  NFB should stand for something like National Federation of the Blind, who are most likely bumming off the government or their parents.  The sad truth of being blind is that you have to bum off the government in order to live.  Jobs are hard to come by, and my friend Art, remember the guy whose sister treated him like dirt, honestly said jobs were a lucky thing.  I can’t find one, and if I don’t take the A Plus exam, then what?  I can’t do graphics.  There needs to be a test accommodations measure so I can take it and pass like everyone else.

But support groups!  Yeah, see that little flashlight popping in your head, Blake and all others who might benefit?  Yeah, a support group.  No joke.  I have a friend called Torrey, who goes to a grief group.  Her brother suffered similar stuff.  HE committed suicide, and boy does that group make a difference in Torrey’s life.  She and I have become good friends, really good friends.  WE have been in two different groups before, a social skills and a behavioral skills group.  While I’m not exactly fond of behavioral skills, social skills is a joke.  Coffee sucks, and I hate it.  On top of that, the people vary from week to week, and those who are in the group are like … wow.  Some smoke, others have it worse than I do.  I”m lucky I don’t have the problem of smoking.  My Aunt Cathy–not the same Cathy I mention in my blog–smokes her brains out.  I always tease her about it whenever I see her, but she has since tried to kill herself twice.  Evidence of mental illness is all over my maternal family.  Well, Mom’s not bad, but that is sure signs that there’s a problem with some of the men, not the women.  The problem is that Cathy had a husband.  A bad one.  You could say it this way, “She married a bad one.”  But then she lost her best friend to suicide, and without the support of a grieving group of individuals, she could not recover well without being in the hospital AGAIN!  Sarah wrote repeatedly on Facebook about it.  Sarah’s the closest I had to a cousin, a sister, whatever.  Sarah could not really understand that yes, I’m in love with Blake, and there’s nothing I can do about it.  Sarah said it was obsession.  So what is my family doing to her!  It’s like the world is against me, but then again, Blake isn’t.  I so wish his whole family would see this, and see that I’m ranting and raving on because of something I can’t control.

Sight, dominance, and untreated mental illness could lead to disaster.  I’m doing my darndest to treat my symptoms but to no avail, and with no reward.  I’m doing the med thing every morning and night.  Take one pill in the morning, then two pills at night.  What EVER!  No rewards.  No good payment for doing right.  Not from anyone, family, doctors, etc.  No.  Just a big fat belly and no clothes to wear, no boyfriends to see, nothing much worth ranting on about.

And my first amendment rights?  They could be extinguished.  Would medications affect all this?  Certainly not.  I have a right to express myself, and that’s the whole point of this blog, now isn’t it?

My Less Than Boring Day

As if nothing could spare me.  Blake called me, happy as always, and he is always happy.  I hope he can forgive me completely, but more than anything, I wish his family would not turn against me.  Families are not supportive in my view, and there’s evidence.  Nancy, a sister of one of my friends, is a real … should I say it?  No, I won’t.  But she’s a trashed weakling who doesn’t know the power that her brother has now that he’s in Denver, Colorado.  Art, her brother, is better at doing things than anybody, and his sister, so he tells me, hates his guts and treats him like a kid.  Well, I think I’ll say this much.

Blake is so going to Art’s wedding to his girl, Diana Chavez.  Let them get married, I say.  But tell me this, should I just hole Blake up in my place and don’t let anyone have him?  What if cathy, his dear mother, doesn’t let him go?  He’s being invited by another friend, and he will go alone.  If Cathy thinks I’m dangerous, then hell, I’m so going to have to say she might have a hint of danger about her.  I told Art my concerns, my worries, what with personal firearms in Blake’s home, which could mean the end of someone’s life.  After all, that’s how someone in that house was killed.  And that someone managed to grab a … well, Blake believes it to be a rifle.  I don’t think we need firearms.  I wish we didn’t do firearms.  I wish we hunted like Katniss does, with bows and arrows, without guns.  I hate guns, seriously.

As much as the guns are bad for us, people still use them.  For instance, Art and I were concerned about a recent Fort Hood shooting.  Like this is the second time a shooting has occurred on base in that area.  The last time the shooting occurred was when a Muslim weirdo shot and killed a bunch of people, and confessed to doing it.  What if there’s a shooting after Blake gets a wedding invitation?  What if Joe does something … no, I love Joe.  I don’t want anyone to get hurt.  I’m concerned as all hell because of the presence of firearms and the woman’s unwillingness to let her dear son grow up.  My concerns are serious.  Firearms are dangerous weapons, they can kill instantly.  We saw that multiple times in Fort Hood, Columbine, Sandy Hooke, etc.  I will not see it happen to my own close friend and lover, Blake.  I will protect him with all my life, and that will mean I will lay it down for him.  I don’t care if that means I take all the guns and lock them up and keep them safe in an armory or something.  I don’t know what will happen to me.  I want a life, and I won’t let a family control that much of my life.  Families such as mine, Art’s, and Blake’s, really need to be chastised for what they do every day to us disabled folks.

Well, let’s talk about my day: I went to work adjustment training.  Learned about wireless internet, I did.  Yoda, are you … following me, are you?  Yes, I’m sure you are.  Laughs out loud.

The one thing I do not like about this work adjustment program is that it’s being forced in order to succeed.  My brothers get all this pampering and degrees and Embraer Jet Firm, and what do I get?  Nothing.  No life, no husband, no chance at a date with someone I truly care about, nothing.  I don’t want this to be too negative a blog, but I did have a good thing happen today.

My friend Clint called me up on Skype.  We talked a lot about stuff, lot of stuff.  Clint said something funny, something about a hockey game with compact flash cards and folding canes.  Blind people really know how to reinvent fun, don’t they!  But Clint’s anecdotes are truly amazing, and I really wish there was something I could do right at the moment.

Now, this is a day or time of reading.  I’m reading Mockingjay, and this is a truly amazing book.  Let me get back to it, but please, my dear friends, pray that Blake and I will soon be reunited together.  It is something I wish to do so badly, and Blake needs me.  I need him, and there’s nothing his own mother can do to stop me from wanting or loving him.  Friends, friends, and always?  Friends my ass.  I want a boyfriend, and I’ve got one.  So just let it happen.  You can’t stop a butterfly from growing wings and flying around the garden.  Just as you can’t stop a caterpillar from turning into a chrysalis.  You can’t do that.  Things grow.  Things just keep growing.  Blake grew.  He bloomed like a flower in Denver, and he’ll further bloom every year as I do in my womanly state.  That’s all I have to say.  Rant over.

National Federation of the Blind and Four Blind People File Suit Against RideCharge, Inc. and Three Taxicab Companies in California

I know Tina Thomas. I’m sorry, but Ridescharge and other cab companies are not accessible completely for blind people. That’s so stupid.

Cheryl Echevarria Advocate for the Blind Blog

Los Angeles, California (April 2, 2014):   The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) , the oldest and largest organization of blind people in the United States, and four blind people residing in California—Rick Boggs, Geraldine Croom, Rochelle Houston, and Tina Thomas —filed suit today (case number: 2:14-cv-02490) in the United States District Court for the Central District of California against RideCharge, Inc. and three entities that manage taxicab fleets in Southern California: Administrative Services Cooperative, Inc., LA Taxi Cooperative, Inc., and South Bay Yellow Cab Cooperative, Inc. The taxicab cooperatives have deployed RideCharge’s self-service, touchscreen payment terminals, which are inaccessible to blind taxicab riders, in taxicabs throughout Southern California. The complaint alleges violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the California Unruh Civil Rights Act, and the California Disabled Persons Act.

The self-service terminals utilize an entirely visual, touchscreen interface mounted on the back of the front passenger…

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A CCB resolution on changes to have certification for service dogs‏

This is long overdue. Service dogs need to be certified and trained in such a way. In such a way that they serve, not distract people by being cute and barking and growling. That’s the thing. And fraud related to such animals is foolish.

Cheryl Echevarria Advocate for the Blind Blog

Dear All,

A resolution that would call upon the Department of Justice to
implement certification requirements for service dogs will be introduced at the California Council for the Blind Convention next week. Below you will find my response to this resolution. Please circulate it as widely as appropriate.

Fraternally yours,

Marion Gwizdala, President
National Association of Guide Dog Users Inc.
National Federation of the Blind
(813) 626-2789 (Office)
888-NAGDU411 (Hotline)

The National Association of Guide dog Users and the National Federation of the blind is opposed to any effort to certify, license, or otherwise regulate the service animal industry. Such regulation would only
serve to centralize more power with the service animal training programs and this coalition which would likely have the ability to self-certify their animals while adding another layer of governmental interference into the lives of those who owner-train. Though most guide dogs are program-trained, not…

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