Something struck me while watching Jeopardy tonight. I rarely see anyone with a physical disability on that show and on other game shows. Yes, Jeopardy did have a blind contestant once. But I have never seen anyone in a wheelchair on Jeopardy or other game shows.
Most of the game shows could make slight modifications to feature a person in a wheelchair. I am sure disabled people apply for these shows all the time. It's the same with sitcoms. People with disabilities are very rare in most shows, less often than they would be in real life.
It wasn't so long ago that seeing African American's on sitcoms was very rare. Now almost every single show has a black character. The more inclusive these shows become, the more people get used to seeing people with disabilities, the more society will want to include them. be pitied or patronized. A physical disability does not make them different than others. Whether we like it or not, television does influence the way many people think about others. So many people still don't understand that people with physical problems are no different than they are; many see them as people to pity or patronize. I have found that as soon as people realize I have a minor physical disability, many of them tend to treat me like I am less intelligent and less competent.
I definitely believe that exposure of the disabled is important to society so they can be treated as full members of that society.
So, do you agree there should be more disabled persons on television?