There seems to be quite a craze at the moment for people to take ‘selfies’ and put them on the internet; whether you tube, facebook, twitter or other similar sites. Selfies, for the record, are pictures taken of yourself by yourself. I wonder, with a smile, how people want to be perceived by putting themselves on the internet this way. Admittedly, on the whole, this is meant to be fun, but creating an image through choice is theirs to take.
A general image of visual impairment and blindness is a harder picture to individualise; especially when applying general perception. For instance, it is hard for many to understand that there are many degrees of visual impairment; asides from simply those that cannot see and those that can. There are many other similar assumptions and beliefs that can cloud the individual images of those with a visual impairment. Although, I’m not sure about anyone’s inclination to actually take a selfie of themselves, I’m sure we’d all like to break through the barriers of perception to realise the individual pictures (whether visual or sound) that we can display.
General public perception is just that. Breaking down barriers does not mean charging into them like bulls in a china shop, but it should mean using any means possible to promote the values, talents, individualities and abilities of people who have a visual impairment.
VI talk is one important instrument in helping to achieve this. By highlighting individual examples, demonstrating individual’s abilities, supporting the development of opportunities and choice, we may go a little further towards enabling us to control the images that we purvey; can bring to the world.