K Tempest Bradford (ktempest) wrote in indie_thinkers,
K Tempest Bradford

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Saw something interesting while I was watching an old episode of The Practice yesterday. The special guest star was Christopher Reeve and he apparently came up with the story.

In short: Chris is a paraplegic because, three years before, he was giving a driving lesson to his nephew and they had an accident. Nephew died, Chris is in a wheelchair. Chris' brother, the kid's father, blames Chris for the accident and won't help him out financially. Chris' wife is going a wee crazy caring for him and dealing with insurance companies and not getting any help and one day the brother ends up dead and the wife is blamed. The lawyers, as usual, figure out the truth - that Chris and his brother's wife plotted to have the brother killed. When they confront the two of them, Chris' character says something like: "But Eleanor, I'm in a wheelchair. People in wheelchairs are weak and helpless. People in wheelchairs are VICTIMS. We don't murder people."

Despite the fact that this particular episode came during the season when The Practice had seriously Jumped the Shark, I was really impressed with this story (as opposed to the other, stupid story going on at the same time). I thought the writing in that moment (which I did not capture well, I'm sure) was brilliant.

On to my point. Do victims really still have this sacred cow status? Do people really look at those in wheelchairs and think that they are weak, incapable, etc? Would it be really hard to prosecute a person in a wheelchair because of the wheelchair? Or because of anything else that might give them victim status?

How do you combat the scared cow?
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