Last year I finally ‘came out’ as a supporter of Conservative Party and identified myself as a ‘disabled Tory’. Previously I had been a New Labour supporter despite my passionate dislike for socialism, but despite my belief and hope Labour might come to its senses, I finally understood the only party that had a positive attitude towards people with impairments was the Tories.
Being a ‘Disabled Tory’ in 2018 comes with a stigma and a hostility from many left wing campaigners and activists that is comparable to antisemitism and other forms of bigotry and discrimination. While I have not been spat at in the street, I certainly had the social media equivalent of it.
Because I identify myself as a Disabled Tory I have received endless abuse and threats from complete strangers on social media, often suggesting I am somehow supporting the mass and deliberate killing of people with impairments. For them, there is no room for debate as they see disabled people as just defects of society and victims for the left to look after. They are not interested in seeing my viewpoint that including people with impairments into society and supporting them to maximise their full potential is a good thing.
You could put this bigotry down to a view ‘pockets’ of people who are merely upset not enough people with impairments are thrown on the scrapheap, but the bigotry I face as a Disabled Tory goes much deeper than this. A Labour councillor in my hometown of Coventry, Rachel Lancaster, directly challenged me on my right to be a disabled Tory because of her dismay at people with impairments being supported into work, in a manner that offered no room for discussion or checking facts. She should have known better but this sadly shows the extent the left now oppose free speech.
I believe everyone has the right to have their own political views and that someone’s identity as a supporter of a political party, any party, should be a protected status under the equality act like race, gender. sexuality and impairment. While I do not agree with the views of most Labour supporters on most issues, I support their right to be Labour supporters as I would with any supporter of any political party.
The problem is, however, the fact that the Left is obsessed with identity politics. In line with a victim making agenda, they regard themselves as a savour of any oppressed minority, like people with impairments, whether they want saving or not. They believe in their idea of the good left versus the evil right and the so-called corrupt capitalist society that I am automatically their property, a toy to use to defend the principles of socialism, and a world they are building where I can lead the rest of my life out free from worries like an injured and so defective donkey.
They fail to understand I am not defective and perfectly capable of making a meaningful contribution to society if I am appropriately supported. The only party currently committed to doing this, as opposed to throwing me on the scrapheap is the Tories. To deny me the right to be a Disabled Tory is not only vile but it shows a hatred for my inclusion into society that is unacceptable.
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