Television needs to normalize disability

Annie Fulwood, Staff Writer

September 18, 2015

Take a moment to recall your favorite TV characters. Maybe, if you’re the age of my father, it’s Fred Flintstone. Or if you’re a suburban mother, it’s Olivia Pope, PR extraordinaire. If you’re 20 and majoring in pre-med, it might be Derek “McDreamy” Shepherd.

And now try to recall how many of those characters were disabled, physically or mentally.

Less than one percent of series regular characters were depicted with a disability on major television networks, including ABC, CBS, The CW, Fox and NBC, in September of 2011. Meanwhile, the 2010 census revealed that 19 percent of the American population, or 56.7 million people, had some form of a disability.

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VMAs start conversations about diversity

Beatriz Caldas, Diversity & Social Justice Coordinator

September 18, 2015

That celebrities love to argue on social media is nothing new, but when they raise interesting questions and concerns about our society, we should listen.

On July 21, MTV released the nominees for their Video Music Awards. Not everyone thought they did a good job with diversity.

“If I was a different ‘kind’ of artist, Anaconda would be nominated for best choreo and vid of the year as well,” wrote Nicki Minaj on her Twitter account after nominations were released. “If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for video of the year.”

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