Paralympics Deserve Equal Air Time and Social Media Coverage, Don’t You Agree?

In Columns, Just My Bellybutton, Opinion by Nathasha Alvarez


The Winter Olympics will soon be over and people will go back to their routine lives thinking that the best athletes in the world have done their job and our on their way home.  But that would be totally inaccurate and a slap in the face to the Paralympic athletes who have trained as hard as any Olympian athlete.  If we can have an African-American president then why can’t we have the Paralympics televised on NBC?

We have twitter, facebook, myspace, and hundreds of other social media networks, yet there was no overwhelming demand to pressure NBC to give equal air time for the Paralympics? What’s the point of social media if it discriminates against the disabled?

But the media is there when they want to air shows about little people right? I am a short stature person and I don’t even watch all of those little people shows. It’s not even about their acting, it’s about society’s curiosity into the lives of little people. Well, why aren’t they curious about the Paralympic athletes?

Who doesn’t want to see amputees race to the finish line? Wheelchair users compete on the tracks? Skiing? Yes! These people deserve our attention and support.

Even official sponsors like Coca Cola and McDonalds should demand air time for the Paralympians. And yet, there is this silence. It’s so silent that it’s driving me crazy!

I feel the physically disabled are being used by the media. We are good for reality shows, like Little People, Big World, Little People: Just Married and Pit Boss. We are necessary for talk shows like Maury Povich and Montel Williams. We make great reasons for a new home on Extreme Home Makeovers. But now, when it’s time to see people with disabilities go for the gold medal there is no show of support? Why?

People say that a petition has gone around. Woopee do da ! A petition doesn’t help unless a law is going to be passed. We need major media attention this in your face discrimination!Why haven’t the disabled people in the media spotlight done something? They have the camera on them all the time! Speak up! Support the Paralympians! This is as much a responsibility as for you as it is for all of us who are not in front of the camera.

Why hasn’t ABC and TLC felt pressure from the people they use to get their ratings up?

Matt Roloff said that we need to stop being crabs in a bucket, pulling each other down. I agree! Let’s start by helping each other up. Let the world know you are not happy that the United States of America which boasts about equality is ignoring the athletes who will be competing for the goal and representing our country. Shame on NBC for thinking that America doesn’t want to view these athletes who will proudly compete in such a way that will keep the viewers in awe!

As people with physical disabilities, we can’t let this go another year! We must demand it this year! We want the Paralympics to be aired the same way the Olympics were aired.

Let these official sponsors know that when we go to buy their products or services, we pay the same price as everyone else. You want my loyalty? You want my money? Give me a reason. Let me know that I count. If I count then show it!

Air the Paralympics with the same pride and glory that you aired the Olympics!

Pass this article to everyone you know. If they are disabled they should pass it on without even having to be asked. If they aren’t disabled they should do it if they feel you are as equal to them.

Email this to official Olympic and Paralympic sponsors. Send it to NBC! Send to the everyone!Huffington Post! The View! 20/20. Your local news! Everyone! This is as much your responsibility as it is theirs.

Give these athletes the respect they deserve because they have earned just like the Olympic athletes!

If this is the land of equality then show it!