Disability Is Natural Books and Media

You and I—along with millions of others—may consider ourselves as advocates for disability issues. We speak out, take actions, and seek to positively influence disability affairs, in general, or the life of someone we care about, in particular. This is a good thing, right? I think so.

Advocacy means different things to different people, and we each have our own unique ways of doing things. It seems, however, that many of us are not as successful as we’d like: I continue to hear too many horror stories from coast-to-coast. We may move from advocacy to full-fledged battles, and even if we “win,” we lose, too. While the “official loser” may be forced to meet our demands, we’ve made a lifelong enemy in the process. Since we have enough adversaries as it is, it seems prudent to spend the time and energy necessary to develop as many allies as possible! So perhaps we should consider moving beyond advocacy to diplomacy.

The definitions above show the difference between the two. While we won’t be “conducting international relations,” we can achieve success by “negotiating alliances, treaties, and agreements.” But perhaps the most important part of the definition is “tact and skill in dealing with people.” This is what may be missing​ . . . Click here to continue.

Advocate: To speak in favor of; one who supports or defends a cause; one who pleads in another’s behalf, esp. a lawyer

(Webster’s II New Riverside University Dictionary)

Diplomacy: The art or practice of conducting international relations, as in negotiating alliances, treaties, and agreements; tact and skill in dealing with people

(Webster’s II New Riverside University Dictionary)

Advocate or Diplomat?


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