It is incredible to believe it has been five years since I was blogging for the Huffington Post on a weekly and even twice weekly basis on the topics I wanted to talk about. The way the Huffington Post allowed so many people with different viewpoints on so many different issues to have voice felt like a revolution in free speech and citizen based democracy.
My blogs were almost as controversial as they are now and many other ‘disabled’ activists were outraged the Huffington Post gave me a voice, there was even a small petition demanding I was banned from their website. But I was just one of many views on impairment-related issues the site allowed. If people were capable, they could write their own articles to be published challenging the views I had.
I believe it was about two years ago that my relationship with the Huffington Post began to change in two ways. I was becoming more confident in my viewpoints as well as my political understanding. My awareness that I was an independent and honest activist meant that I wanted to be able to say what I really meant and the Huffington Post would reject posts that it found uncomfortable.
On my own blog, I could publish whatever I wanted as I indeed did. I now had my own large twitter base and I was considering what exactly was the Huffington Post offering me at this stage of my development, the answer was nothing. If I was truly independent, it was time for me to blog as an independent and honest activist on my own blog.
At the same time, the Huffington Post was recognising its growth and standing, and felt the need to better organise itself, shifting it into the central-left liberal competitor to the Guardian it is today. This included taking a tighter control of its material related to people with impairments stories, going for safe and comfortable feel good stories that offered no room for the intellectual challenges I offered.
The new look Huffington Post was one that called for all people with impairments to accept their role as victims of society, wonder that is victims of welfare forms, and people who have failed to have the perfect middle class lifestyle they feel they deserve. A classless significantly impaired independent and honest activist like myself, with a level of intelligence and confidence comparable to Sherlock Holmes, certainly did not fit into the direction of the Huffington Post, and hence our silent divorce was only a matter of time.
The Huffington Post like the Guardian and BBC have shown how liberalism and political correctness has been turned into a veil and vile acceptance of the ideology of the left. In terms of people with impairments, this means accepting people with impairments are second-class citizens although wrapping it up as human rights, equality, compassion and fairness. The Huffington Post has moved from a platform of free speech, to a typical left wing puppet designed to keep people with impairments disempowered for the benefit of the industries that profit from this.
Maybe the Huffington Post experiment on true free speech was too successful or maybe the will of advertisers and executives took priority, the fact is still that the revolution of free speech promised by the Huffington Post is over as it takes its role as a direct competitor to the Guardian and a traitor to the meaningful inclusion of people with impairments.