Letters: Defeat of treaty a travesty
December 14, 2012 10:42PM
Updated: January 17, 2013 6:13AM
I have had my disability for 56 years. It has been my privilege to have been a part of the Independent Living/Disability Rights movement for 27 years. During that time, people with disabilities have fought for and won numerous battles in our fight for equality.
Illinois has several laws that protect the civil rights of its citizens with disabilities. In 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law, guaranteeing that disabled Americans finally enjoyed equal rights.
There have also been numerous setbacks in our struggle for equality. However, the U.S. Senate’s rejection of that United Nation’s Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is deplorable.
This treaty would have simply provided a legal and moral framework for activists to push for disability rights legislation policies in their own countries. The treaty would have had little or no impact on the United States. Yet, despite the fact that President George H. W. Bush and former Sen. Robert Dole (who is a World War II disabled veteran) supported this treaty, it was rejected along political lines.
I have read and heard many of the reasons why some senators rejected the treaty. None of their reasons had anything at all to do with the treaty’s wording. In fact, most, if not all of the so-called reasons were preposterous. I am simply dumbfounded that this treaty, which had no enforcement powers, was rejected simply for partisan reasons.
My hope is that the senators who voted against the treaty will hear from their constituents with disabilities who will express their outrage on this travesty.
Will-Grundy Center for Independent Living
Show some respect
I went to the swearing in of the Will County elected officials and board members on Dec. 3. The swearing in began at 9:30 a.m., and all board members were there right on time.
After the swearing in, there was a scheduled board meeting at 11:30 a.m. The county executive called for all members to take their seats, but there was a problem. There were no Republican board members!
The Republicans decided to caucus at 11:15 a.m., and marched into the board room at 11:45 a.m. Since the Nov. 6 election, Democrats have gained seats on the county board. Republicans have 13 members and the Democrats have 13 members and the Democrat county executive has the tie-breaking vote.
Republicans have had control of the Will County board for 32 years, and it is obvious that they are not happy about losing control. That was shown in their lack of respect by showing up late to a scheduled meeting.
All board members took an oath to represent citizens of Will County. Did these board members represent the people by showing up late? I think not!
I am disappointed in my Will County board members from District 6 — Don Gould and Ragan Freitag — for following their political party and not doing their job in representing the people of their district. I hope in the future Gould and Freitag will think of the people of District 6 they were elected to represent, and not the Republican Party. I urge everyone to attend a Will County board meeting to see how their Will County board members are representing them.
The board meets on the third Thursday of every month at 9:30 a.m. at the Will County Building. Hopefully, next time the Republicans will be there on time.