Home > Uncategorized > Equal treatment is a double edged knife.

Equal treatment is a double edged knife.

I was thinking about a rude person I met last week whose behavior was tolerated by many people around him because of his mental condition. 

I believe that while you can’t punish behaviors that are a result of a mental disability or condition, you can certainly address behaviors that are chosen.  If a mentally ill person shoves you to get away from an unseen enemy it’s unfortunate but if they cut in front of a line at McDonald’s because they don’t want to wait then it’s just bad manners. 

My son is autistic and when he is having problems related to his disability we do what we can to deal with it and when he’s making a nuisance of himself because he’s choosing to be a surly young man, we call him out on it.

Of course, when there is any doubt about whether someone’s bad behavior is related to a medical condition then they must be given the benefit of the doubt but when it’s clear then they should be treated like anybody else.

Tolerating bad behavior from someone because they’re disabled is, in essence, expecting less from them because of their disability.  It’s wrong to do this when they’re applying for a job and it’s wrong to do this when they’re being rude.

 

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