Monday, September 6, 2010

Take Your Pity and Stuff It

"Pity? You don't want to be pitied because you're a cripple in a wheelchair? Stay in your house!"
--Jerry Lewis, CBS Sunday Morning, May 20, 2001

It’s that time of year again when Jerry Lewis goes on television to make money for all the poor disabled children with muscular dystrophy. As Mr. Lewis and his promoters learned a long time ago, pity makes money.

As writer Anne Finger wrote in her memoir “Elegy for a Disease”:

"Jerry Lewis’s MDA Telethon, rather than working for equality and social inclusion of disabled people, portrays us as hopeless, pathetic, eternal children. Lewis has said, “My kids cannot go into the workplace. There’s nothing they can do.” He has said that a disabled individual is “half a person,” and [If] you don’t want to be pitied because you’re a cripple in a wheelchair, stay in your house!” His telethon reinforces the notion that cure and prevention are what disabled people need, not social change."

Needless to say, I will not be watching the telethon, and I urge you to also boycott it. My children do not want pity, and they do not need Jerry Lewis, the supreme panderer of pity.

Oh and Mr. Lewis, my children will NOT stay in their house. They will, along with me, be out in the world fighting people like you.


Queenbuv3 said...

Well put : )

Nina Diane said...

I ALWAYS boycott his telethon...can't stand him

Dalya said...

how disgusting!! you`d think they would kick him off and get someone more suited to the job!!! I pity this man, for being so narrowly focused on the negatives!!


HennHouse said...


Janet said...

No arguments from me.

One of our friends from hippotherapy - and his family - have received lots of help from the local MDA. Ben got to go to a week long camp this year - on a scale of 1 to 10, he reported the week to be a 9.8 because it was way hot.

Molly said...

Ew. The kids I work with are far too good for his pity. They're awesome. They make my freaking day. I adore them. But I never EVER pity them.

Pity is a useless emotion.

Miz Kizzle said...

Since when did Jerry's head get so huge? Was it because he huffed all that chloroform back in the day when Sinatra and the rat pack used to tolerate him? It's like a giant head balloon. I pity him.
And another thing, I worked at a camp for kids with spina bifuda when I was in college and all of the campers loathed Jerry Lewis. Interestingly, it wasn't because of the telethons but because of his portrayal of the bucktoothed dimwit with the huge eyeglasses.

Cris said...

Wow, you loath the man who has devoted a big part of his life helping those who suffer from muscular dystrophy?

How utterly small minded. And to turn around and make fun of his enlarged head??? You're right... you don't deserve sympathy.

Officer Cynical said...

Since 1966, Jerry Lewis's telethon has raised over $2 billion for MD. That's billion with a "B". I agree completely with Cris.