Disability is defined as a health
condition or physical impairment that prevents an individual from taking full
advantage of lifes opportunities such as education, vocation, recreation,
and activities of daily living.
For the purposes of discussion: Using
this definition, are the individuals in the following scenarios disabled?
(Consider just the first bullet point, then the first two points,
- An individual with ALS cannot
walk, talk, or personally perform any of the usual activities of daily living.
He has only very limited volitional control of one finger.
- This individual employs a
powered wheelchair for his mobility.
- This individual employs a
speech output communication device to facilitate his communication.
- The individual is Steven
Hawking, often described as the smartest person alive.
- A runner is not good enough to
compete in the Olympics.
- The runner, Oscar Pistorious,
has a double lower limb amputation.
- He wears Cheetah Flex-Foot
carbon fiber transtibial artificial limbs made by Ossur that enables him to run
faster than his able-bodied competitors.
- He has been disqualified from
competing in the Olympics because his artificial legs give him an unfair
- A grade school child has an
accident that severs the tip of his little finger on his left hand.
- Because of this, he cannot
continue playing his violin.
- An artificial fingertip is
fabricated that enables him to continue to enjoy playing.
- A group of very intelligent
and motivated young adults dont have jobs.
- They are an extreme financial
burden to their families.
- They are under-educated, most
with no current employment prospects.
- They are Stanford
- A young woman has a
devastating car accident that results in facial disfigurement.
- She has plastic surgery and
when the bandages are removed, she appears beautiful.
- She lives in a closed society
of disfigured people.
- Superman sitting next to a
piece of kryptonite.
- An able-bodied intelligent
child of ethnic descent.
- She cannot get a decent
education in the segregated / poor / remote community in which she
- A world-class professor is
hired by Stanford University.
- He has organized an excellent
- His overwhelming
administrative responsibilities prevent him from full participation in his
courses and relationships with his students and colleagues.
- An individual of limited
financial means has a severe disability for which there is no cure and there
are no assistive devices available to restore lost functionality.
- Students have fabricated a new
assistive device for this individual.
- A single crude prototype
exists, but the device is not commercially available.
- The students form a company
and manage to obtain venture capital to bring this device to
- The individual wants to obtain
the product, but the health insurance company decides not to provide
reimbursement for it.
- A young girl lives in rural
- Girls are not allowed to go to
- She dresses as a boy to