You say Transableism, I say KRAZZY!

No one is willing to use the word crazy anymore. No matter how crazy someone is, we have to make up some “identity” they have. It is more “sensitive” you know. I remember when I was small, five or so, my grandfather had a man who would visit every few months. My Granddad called him Cowart, so, I guess that was his name. The first time I saw him, he gave me the creeps, he was just off somehow. When he left that day, I asked granddad what was wrong with that man. “He is touched in the head” was granddads answer. Seeing I was a tad confused, granddad simplified things for me. “I mean he is crazy” he said. Today, my grandfather would be called all sorts of names for his honesty. But, still crazy is crazy, and we need to be able to say certain people are, well, you know.

Take people who want to voluntarily have their limbs cut off. Yes, you read that correctly. We cannot call such people crazy, no. Instead, we must cal such people have transableism. What is Transablesim you say?

In the late 1990s, the Scottish surgeon Robert Smith performed elective, above-the-knee amputations on two people. (The hospital he was affiliated with eventually compelled him to stop.) Smith’s patients are just two examples of people who have body integrity identity dysphoria, also known as being transabled: They feel they are disabled people trapped in abled bodies. Some people feel that they are meant to be amputees and will even injure themselves in order to create the desired amputation or make it medically necessary for a surgeon to perform it. Other people feel that they were meant to be blind or deaf.

Eventually, the hospital stopped him, eventually! Well, he is crazy for helping crazy people destroy their own bodies. But, again, NOT say these folks are, well……… you know. Instead, we are supposed to say they “identify” as disabled, so

Anthropology scholar Jenny L. Davis writes about how transabled people construct their identities. Not all transabled people express what Davis refers to as “impairment needs” in the same way. She writes:

The term wannabe refers to those who want/need to have a physical impairment. Pretenders act out their impairment-needs by, for example, folding an appendage, inserting ear plugs, wearing opaque contacts, walking on crutches, wheeling themselves in a chair, or wearing neck/leg/back braces. Devotees experience fetishistic attractions toward the physically impaired bodies of others…

To learn more about how transabled people see themselves, Davis analyzed the introductory statements of twenty-two bloggers on transabled.org, a now-defunct website where transabled people told their stories. The bloggers, Davis found, used narrative to show that being transabled was natural or essential for them, rather than a choice or something learned. Indeed, they wished to avoid the stigma that might come with the notion of choosing disability, a “socially devalued bodily state.”

In short CRAZY! In need of help, serious mental health help. 

2 thoughts on “You say Transableism, I say KRAZZY!”

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