Chris Ashton

dai11y 23/02/2021

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12 Common Words and Phrases You May Not Realise Are Ableist

  • Some of these seem fairly obvious, but others less so. With respect to autism, “high or low functioning” is an ableist term I hadn’t considered. ‘Differently abled’ and ‘special needs’ are also poor euphemisms for the term ‘disabled’. ‘Tone deaf’ and ‘blind spot’ are also terms in common usage, but which harmfully link deafness/blindness with ignorance.
  • The other phrases this article considers ableist are ‘imbecile’, ‘crippled’, ‘spastic’, ‘lame’, ‘suffering’ (as in “suffering from [disability]”), ‘wheelchair bound’ (in reality, many wheelchair users find their wheelchairs liberating) and finally, a saying I hadn’t heard before: “See the Able, Not the Label”.

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