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On Mon, 2005-06-20 at 14:27 -0600, Chris Christner wrote:
> The miracle is that anybody is healthy enough to work a 40 hour week! How
> so many people can manage to work at all while dealing with their
> illnesses is beyond me.
Your comment makes me remember a passage in Sylvia Plath's Bell Jar in
which the protagonist looks at the symptoms of mental illness, and
concludes that she must be suffering from all of them. In something of
the same way, you look at various mental disorders and physical
impairments, and respond as if the healthy are a minority.
Yet, even accepting the figures you give, many of the conditions you
mention don't keep those who have them from working. Several of the
ones you mention are physical, not mental, so they don't necessarily
prevent someone from working at an office job.
Others may be hard to bear, but cover a very broad spectrum of
conditions. For example, I've known people who were clinically diagnosed
as depressed or having ADD who have held down responsible jobs for
years. Ditto for functional alcoholics and PTSD sufferers, whom you
admittedly don't mention, but could be easily added to your list. The
point is, having an impairment isn't an all or nothing state. Nor (to
state something that's obvious, but worth stressing) do any of these
things affect a person's intelligence or creativity.
In fact, when you consider that most people in North America are
chronically short of sleep and rely on regular doses of caffeine just to
function, those who suffer impairments probably have no trouble holding
their own -- especially on Fridays. ;-)
If nothing else, most of the impaired people I know have learned to take
care of themselves.
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