A statement on why I’m joining the Disability March: I would have very much liked to participate in one of the Sister Marches organized in solidarity with the Women’s March in Washington, DC. I was shocked and horrified when Trump won the election and want to do my part to insist that the hatred, discrimination, petty meanness, and illiberalism he stands for are still not what the public sphere is or should be made of. I have weak stamina, however, and am very short – just under 5 feet tall – and I’m afraid that I couldn’t keep up with a crowd or I might get lost within it, unable to see what was going on around me. I’m also hard of hearing. Right now, I’m in Paris, France for dissertation research. While a Sister March is also being organized here, the elevated levels of pollution in this city have been making me ill, so I’m also afraid what spending several hours on the street would do to my health. For all these reasons, I’m deeply appreciative that this Disability March is being organized virtually and I can – albeit in a different way – add my voice.
I am a 31-year-old graduate student (PhD candidate) in 20th century European and Jewish history. From the California Bay Area, I’m currently in Europe carrying out archival research. I have a rare congenital craniofacial disability, but it’s only been recently that I’ve started exploring what it actually means to be disabled, to accept this aspect as part of my identity.