As we develop a greater understanding of what it means to be intellectually disabled, our knowledge and acceptance thankfully deepens. Fortunately, today’s world has more freedom, compassion and respect than ever before.
Most of us are pleased to see people with disabilities succeeding in the world, appearing on television, securing modelling contracts, achieving their educational and career goals, whatever they may be. Sadly, there remain people who live in the past and feel as though this important part of our community has no right to be independent.
An episode of “What Would You Do” with John Quinones aimed to tackle this issue when restaurant customers were presented with a man verbally harassing another customer because of his disability. In the clip, one lady quickly decided that she had heard enough.
According to the National Down Syndrome Society and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one in every 700 babies born in the United States has Down syndrome. Down syndrome is actually the most common chromosomal condition – more than 6,000 babies are born with the condition every year in the US.
Resources and research have gone into ensuring this community gets the help and access to opportunities it so rightly deserves. People with Down syndrome have so much to give, often showing the rest of us a thing or two about love and kindness.
People with Down syndrome are now able to achieve great things, holding esteemed positions and helping to shape society for the better. Despite all of these positive achievements, however, there are still ignorant people out there with little or no patience or understanding.
In the video below, a man with Down syndrome sat at a table and waited patiently for the waitress to take his order. When the waitress asked what he wanted, she was questioned about some of the items on the menu. In the staged scenario, another man then starts expressing his frustration, treating the man with utter disrespect.
The event was staged to see how the other customers – unaware that it was filmed, would react. You can see how they did so in the video below. One woman gets so angry she starts shaking.
The treatment of this young man leaves some customers visibly upset; it’s an emotional issue which people do (and should) feel very strongly about.
Please share this story with others, as a reminder that we should all stand up to this kind of behavior whenever it rears its ugly head.