Memorial for students slain by National Guard at KSU in 1970
At Kent State University in 1970, the US National Guard opened fire on a group of student protesters on campus. Nine were injured and four were killed. I went to the 43rd annual memorial at KSU today and sat for a few moments at each of the four spots which marked where the student's dead bodies were found. As I sat there, I reflected upon all the controversial things I've accomplished, including protesting on more than one occasion. I am grateful that thus far I have survived each incident fairly unscathed yet, I am aware that being the "Gimp Avenger" comes with many potential risks.
Director, Oliver Stone with Jane Hash
Today KSU dedicated its new "May 4 Visitors Center" to commemorate this historical event. Director/Producer, Oliver Stone participated in this dedication and offered some inspiring words of wisdom. He said that protests DO work and nothing will change unless we make it change. Stone encouraged everyone to see through the false media and BECOME the media by writing blogs and reporting the truth as you see it unfold. My sentiments exactly!
BD: I have been involved with ADAPT since 1986 when we started a local chapter to get lifts put on buses in Rochester, NY. I worked at the local Center for Independent Living as an accessibility specialist. Because another staff person was on vacation, I was asked to talk to some folks about some transportation regulations. I had been a bus rider and was appalled when I realized that folks didn’t have any real options for transportation. People were mad. They asked what we could do, so we started to work on it. We found every opportunity to pressure the transit authority. It took three years before creating a state law that required access, which passed just one year before the ADA, but we won!
After our local group got our first accessible bus, we decided we needed to work on getting attendant services for folks so they could live in the community. We didn’t realize that national ADAPT had made the same decision which – for me – shows that the decision was the absolutely logical thing to do.
GA: Tell us about your involvement with them?
BD: I am an organizer with ADAPT. I work extensively at the state level trying to end Medicaid’s institutional bias so that people with disabilities of any age (young or old) can live in freedom. We are working in New York on implementing the Community First Choice Option – a new optional Medicaid program that would give people a real alternative to institutional placement.
At the national level, I am part of ADAPT’s group of contact people who represent all of the local groups. We are the decision-making part of ADAPT that decides things like when and where we will have actions (protests) and what we are working on as a national group. Local groups set their own priorities but we are all working to end the institutional bias in one way or another.
GA: What is the "2013 ADAPT Fun Run?" BD:The Fun Run is our only national fund-raiser. We use these funds to subsidize the room rates for everyone and pay for accommodations like sign language interpreters. Basically, we go to Upper Senate Park in Washington, DC and do laps. We can get donations based on the number of laps we do. People also can donate a fixed amount of money to us, and “virtual runners” who are running “in spirit” with us but not actually present in DC.
When we raise funds, half goes to our local group and half goes to national ADAPT – which set up the website and handles billing and such too. We’ve opened the Fun Run up to other organizations as well. It’s a way they can raise funds for their groups while supporting ADAPT!
Do not fear! "HASH IT OUT WITH JANE" is still going strong. Stronger than ever actually! The podcast which supports independent thought, personal responsibility and social consciousness is so successful that it deserves its very own blog and a snazzy new logo! Go bookmark its new location and download the latest episode today! Peace!
Dear Readers, This Blog has been up and active for almost two years now. In that time, I have posted about an exceptionally wide variety of topics. According to some of the emails and comments I've received from my dedicated fans/supporters, I have piqued people's interest in regard to what kind of person I am in real life. Soon, you will all have an opportunity to find out! "Plain Jane The SHOCKUMENTARY" is a documentary film about me, directed and produced by Tom Trainer of Alternative Noise Productions. In this film, many of your questions will be answered and possibly replaced with new questions! For up-to-date details on film festivals, promotional give-aways, premier dates, and release dates go to the "Plain Jane The SHOCKUMENTARY"website. Be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook as well...details are on the website! Namaste', Jane Hash (The Gimp Avenger)
Hey, Everyone! Remember how much you all love me because I'm cute, cuddly, and just a little bit crazy? How would you like to do me a tiny, little favor once a day, every day until May 10th, 2013? It won't cost you any money at all...just 2 minutes of your time.
Share this information with your friends, family, co-workers, Pimp, Coven/Church, support group, parole officer, fellow-inmates, people you see in public bathrooms, doctors, therapists, lawyers, bill collectors, and the person sitting next to you on the bus! I need a 'Gimp Avenger Mobile!'
Recently, I had to learn a harsh reality by making a bad decision. In my defense, I did extensive research and truly believed I was making a wise decision. This is my story... I receive SSI because I was born with a significant disability. I receive Food Stamps (EBT) because SSI is not enough to cover all living expenses. I receive Home Care services because I can't get myself out of bed or to the bathroom. I also have a wall full of professional credentials and a desire to provide for myself as much as possible instead of being a drain on the system because I have a great deal to contribute.
Toward the tail end of 2012 I read about Ohio's Medicaid Buy-In Program. It seemed too good to be true so I made a few phone calls to confirm that I was understanding the program correctly. All parties agreed that by enrolling in the Medicaid Buy-In Program I could start my own business, earn money, and not lose any of the critical services that I depend on. However, when I reach a certain income level, I will lose the Food Stamps and SSI and eventually have to make payments to continue Home Care services. I thought that sounded great since my goal is to get off the system. "Sign me up" I said! My home-based business started out slow yet steady. Like any new business, any money made the first year or so isn't really profit. It just gets reinvested into the business. All seemed to be going in a prosperous direction. Then I received two letters in the mail. The first letter was from Medicaid, informing me that they were reducing my Food Stamps. For every dollar paid to me from my Customers, Medicaid will take a dollar from my Food Stamps. "Yikes," I thought. I didn't panic until I opened the second letter though, which was from SSI. For every dollar paid to me from my Customers, SSI will take a dollar from my SSI payments. I thought this must be a mistake because it did not make sense to me that SSI/Medicaid would take away from me twice as much as I actually earned. So, I called the Social Security hotline to clear up this misunderstanding.
Now, if you personally know me or you are a follower of any of my blogs, then you know I'm pretty thick skinned. It takes a lot to really traumatize me. Well, after being on hold for more than ten minutes, I was finally connected to a Social Security representative. While she was "pulling up my file" I started to state my case and explain that either I am not correctly understanding the wording of the letters sent to me or there was a mistake made on Social Security's end because the situation at hand just did not make sense. I honestly don't know if this woman heard anything I said. As soon as she retrieved my file, she started screaming at me. I am not saying she used a stern tone. I am saying that my friend who was in a different room in my house came running to see what was going on because he could hear her screaming at me. She was not on speaker-phone either. The message I got from her abusive behavior is that there was no misunderstanding on anyone's part. This is how it is and I can take it or leave it. It took me hours to recover enough to react. I felt victimized. She treated me like I was stealing from her. My next step was no more productive than the previous though. I called my Medicaid case-worker, only to find that she had been transferred and the new case-worker had no idea what I was talking about when I mentioned the Medicaid Buy-In Program. I think the Medicaid Buy-In Program is a great theory but is very, very poorly implemented. Until the powers that be figure out how to make this program work, it is not practical for me to pursue employment.
On two separate occasions in the United States, within the past twelve months, two young children were terrorized by TSA workers. As if that isn't horrible enough, these children are disabled and in wheelchairs. The young victims were three year-old Lucy Forck and the three year-old son of Matt DuBiel.
Do not misunderstand where my issue lies. I do not think that being disabled means that you should not have to follow basic rules of safety just like everyone else. However, if a person is a wheelchair user then there is likely a significant medical reason. Some wheelchair users, myself included, are classified as "medically fragile." Patting down a person who is medically fragile could absolutely endanger his/her life.
If I was one of these children, the end result would have been even more tragic. I would have needed to be hospitalized and my Mother would have been arrested. I have a brittle bone condition called Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI.) Children who have the more severe form of OI like I do tend to be extremely fragile...like glass. As a child, I broke my own ribs just by sneezing. Needless to say, if I was patted down by someone who was not properly trained in the handling of OI children, I likely would have sustained multiple fractures. Can you imagine how this could affect a parents protective instinct? My Mother would have taken out at least two TSA Agents before they got her down and cuffed...no joke. Where do you think I got my mammoth sized ladyballs from? I am not one to take the time to blog about a problem without offering some possible solutions. My suggestions may not be ideal but they may hopefully lead to a more humane TSA protocol.
When person with a disability (PWD) requires a traveling companion, the PWD must never be required to separate from his/her traveling companion.
When a PWD needs to be transferred out of a wheelchair, the traveling companion should be the person to do this...unless of coarse the PWD can do it himself/herself.
Only a trained medical person should be permitted to pat down a PWD.
PWD who are medically fragile and intend to travel should have a statement from his/her primary care physician or specialist that states his/her patient is "medically fragile." This document should be kept on the PWD's body and should be honored by TSA.
These are my suggestions. How do you feel about them? Do you have any better ideas? Let's talk about this and get an acceptable solution implemented before more people are victimized in the name of 'safety.'