While the news has been too full of the names of POC murdered by cops who get away with their crimes, the murders of disabled children may or may not go unpunished, but there is a much greater and more insidious tendency for people to sympathize with the parents who committed murder than the innocent lives that were snuffed out by the very people who should have been loving and protecting them.
Ableism is arguably harder to overcome as a bias than racism, because it’s too easy for healthy, able people of all backgrounds to sympathize with the “intense burden” a disabled child (including adult children) places on the parents. These murder victims are often viewed more like euthanized animals, their deaths a sad but necessary act that allows the surviving family to “get on with their lives” that had been so disrupted by the existence of a special needs child.
Even the largest autism charity (that which shall not be named) filmed a video spot sympathizing with a board member who spoke of wanting to commit murder-suicide, but stopped herself from driving off the bridge because of her neurotypical daughter she would have left behind.
Parenting is hard. Parenting a special needs child is harder, sometimes exponentially. Murder is NEVER an acceptable or sympathetic act. Disabled people may not be able to “contribute” to the world economically, sadly the only thing our society seems to value, but their lives – OUR lives – matter and can have meaning that others cannot comprehend.