Voices in Disability: Dr. Richard Pimentel

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Hey guys,


So, I’ve been a little busy lately and have had a lot less time to write. To keep myself from fading into obscurity in the minds of my readers, I have decided to stick to publishing schedule here on WordPress. I will be posting every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from here on out.


Today, I have a little bit of a long-winded treat. However it is not delivered by me. I found a YouTube video of Dr. Richard Pimentel giving a keynote speech to a group of disabled Vietnam veterans back in 2010, in Orlando Florida. For those of you who don’t know, Dr. Pimentel is a disabled Vietnam veteran who was one of the driving forces behind the passage of the Americans with disabilities act in 1990, that became and instituted reality in 1992. This video is long, so I don’t blame you if you don’t have time to watch the entire thing in one sitting, I know I didn’t. I do have to tell you guys though, that it is definitely worth watching and I would appreciate it very much if you watch the entire thing. In this talk, Dr. Pimentel talks about his time in Vietnam, and how by happenstance he met a man named Arthur Honeyman in college. Arthur had cerebral palsy, just like me. But Arthur would’ve had what is called spastic quadriplegia, meaning that the condition affected all four limbs to a great extent, rather than my two. As a result of the war, Richard was afflicted with a condition called tendinitis, which caused him to lose 50% of his hearing specifically in the upper register, as well as hearing a constant ringing in his ear. It just so happened that Arthur could hear perfectly fine, and Richard could hear Arthur perfectly well since most of his spastic noises were out of Richard’s hearing range, or Richard could hear was what Art wanted to say. They were an odd couple match made in heaven. Please enjoy, and I will see you guys on Saturday.


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