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Mar 20, 2015

Our group chat got started with a little Grinch-iness over the very sweet and inspirational story of a cheerleader with Down syndrome who was defended from bullies by some middle-school basketball players. We applaud those players, we're delighted that this girl is cheerleading and accepted by her schoolmates ... but the viral hoopla that surrounded the circulation of the story and mushroomed into escalating efforts by the school leave us a bit unsettled. We look forward to a day when standing up for people with disabilities will be standard operating procedure, not medal-worthy; wonder why inspiring stories about people with disabilities so often star people without; worry about what happens when all the attention dies down; and hope folks realize that just hitting "share" on that heartwarming post doesn't mean you're off the hook for the things you do that are less than inclusive and accepting.

Next, we looked at the way some parents have sought to get themselves off the hook with fellow airline passengers by distributing apology goodie-bags before their baby even starts wailing in midair. We talked about the need for people to get over being angry about crying babies already; the much-worse people that try our patience in flight; the impossibility of actually getting it together to do such a Pinterest-y thing; and the appeal of doing things to make people feel like heels for complaining about you.

Finally, we shared our recommendations for the week: Catherine liked a post on Parent Hacks about getting older kids to do chores; Amanda mentioned an article she wrote about "8 Steps for Helping Third and Fourth Graders Become Self-Advocates"; Nicole again invited listeners to join her and Terri for the Inclusive Class podcast; and Terri had a suggestion for a more useful thing to share on Facebook if you want to support kids with special needs, and some real-world things to follow up with.

Thanks as always to Jon Morin for producing our episode and Kristin Eredics for our happy in-and-out music. (If you're reading this description somewhere without hyperlinks, come to for the full recap experience.)