[nabs-l] negative traffic

Sarah J. Blake sarah at growingstrong.org
Tue May 19 11:30:23 UTC 2009


I regularly attend ACB conventions and would take exception to your 
assertion that 3/4 of ACB traffic is negative toward anything. That is a 
pretty negative statement in itself. I wasn't going to comment on it; bt 
this is the kind of un-constructive comment that prevents dialogue. I see a 
lot of NFB members emailing with the signature, "We must be the change we 
wish to see in the world..." Why not put it into practice...? Then again, 
maybe the division doesn't bother you. If you like it, put it in positive 
words for us. I disagree with Arielle's points, but I appreciated her 
positive spin on the benefits of having two organiations.

In reality, whenever you put thousands of people together, many of whom are 
over 55, there will likely be a good deal of negative energy unless there is 
a concerted effort to build positive energy. The very nature of dealing with 
blindness issues is that some negative energy must be dealt with. Regardless 
of how many blindness skills we have, how many gadgets we have to enable us 
to do xxx, or how accessible the environment is, things will take longer and 
be more cumbersome and we will always battle negative attitudes; and it is a 
pain in the behind. Part of what happens at conventions is that people 
realize, "Hey, someone gets it." Part of what happens is that someone will 
confront someone about the fact that they need to grow up and stop being 
such a whiner because we all live this. Part of what happens is that we 
wrangle about what on earth to advocate for--and we can't agree because 
despite having blindness in common, we all cope just a bit differently. It 
does create negative energy, regardless of which organization a person 
belongs to. I suspect there is negative energy in every advocacy 
organization in existence. In fact, I took a leadership course this spring 
in which there were only six participants. We did mock controversies; and 
you would be amazed at the negative energy that was generated!

Sarah J. Blake
Personal email: sjblake at growingstrong.org

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