Roan Boucher (AORTA): Disabled People Deserve to Live

Linoleum block print of black and white sunflowers with yellow petals growing on either side of the words “Disabled people deserve to live” in dark green lettering.
Roan Boucher, AORTA: Anti-Oppression Resource and Training Alliance, linocut, Jan 2022

From AORTA’s Instagram:

Ableism has informed the US’s pandemic response since the beginning. Last week, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky cited the “encouraging” data that the majority of Covid deaths are in those with 4 or more pre-existing medical conditions. This statement and its phrasing lay bare what disabled people have seen clearly – that their/our lives are disposable to those who are guiding public health policy, that the deaths of disabled people are considered an acceptable loss.

Rather than protecting the most vulnerable, our leaders have asked us to carry the burden of survival alone, so everyone else can act as though things are “normal“.

Disabled people (and fat people, pregnant people, elders, and other vulnerable folks) are not expendable. People of color and poor people are not expendable. Our public health response is based on eugenicist logics, insisting that we normalize millions of preventable deaths.

A humane and coherent public health strategy would take a fraction of the money and energy our government spends on militarism, incarceration, and policing. The lack of action on Covid is an extension of this violence, an unacceptable – if predictable – response from a society that values white supremacy and profit for the wealthy over the survival and care of its people.

Re-posted with the artist’s permission.