But first, think about people who are ill and are referred to as “shut-ins”. It is true, if a person is sick, that they just don’t feel well enough to go out. In that case, they are medically “shut-in” their house during a time of recovery. Compare this to the very different situation of people with mobility impairments. When faced with a condition that limits their ambulation, but are otherwise able, these people modify their homes to enable them to come and go as needed.
If a person has the ability to go out of their house freely, but they cannot enter the doors of our workshops, churches or offices, are they really “shut-in”? People with mobility impairments are actually “shut-out” in these circumstances. The term shut-in evokes sympathy and compassion, while the term shut-out implies rejection. What church would have a ministry to those they shut-out? What grocery store owner would deliver “meals on wheels” to people they shut-out?
The point here is to continue encouraging kindness shown to those who cannot leave their homes, and also to show the same kindness to those who can leave their homes! BOTH AND! Remember the sacrifice made for us at Calvary. Jesus said in John 13:34 ‘A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.’ When we treat each other this way, accommodation and inclusion of people with disabilities in our society will outpace any advances the ADA could ever offer!