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Parents Protest Disabled Kids' TV Host

Are Parents Discriminating Against Differently Abled TV Host?

A number of British parents are upset over a BBC children's channel, CBeebies, whose host is differently abled. Cerrie Burnell's right arm ends just below her elbow. Parents have complained to the network that she is causing their tots to have nightmares. The BBC is standing by their host, saying that while children may be inquisitive about her appearance, it is the parents who may need to modify their thinking.

I am appalled by the parents' behavior, are you?

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brere1 brere1 8 years
I run a child development consultancy, (Snowdrop), where I see lots of children who are 'differently abled' (I prefer to say 'disabled.'). I was also parent to a child with severe disabilities. The parents of the children I see, mirror my own experience, - that society is still not well educated enough about disability issues. This lack of education fosters discriminatory attitudes. It also fosters fear! People are afraid of, and react badly to issues they do not understand.
smartiez smartiez 8 years
I just love one of the questions! "How do you explain to a three-year-old child why one of the hosts has half of an arm?" Simply. YOU TELL THEM. Why are people so discriminative about this woman? She seems upbeat. Obviously she has a good attitude about it all, and so do the children. It's their parents that need to go back and learn how to get with the program.
mmbtrfli mmbtrfli 8 years
GET ON WITH YOUR I always thought that England was by far ahead of ‘acceptance’ than here in the US. For instances Gay rights, interracial relationships. I think what scares people the most is being uneducated, We all would like to think we know it all. What’s wrongDiesel with asking questions and getting truthful explanations. Not just for children but for adults too. Why is it so hard to say we made a mistake. That is one thing I will tell my children if I made a mistake I admit it. These parents who are saying that Cerrie has given their children nightmares and ‘How are they going to explain to their children about why her arm is missing’. GROW UP AND TELL THE BLOODY TRUTH AND BUSINESS. ITS 2009 FOR GODS SAKE!
Sarana Sarana 8 years
I guess differently abled is the new PC way of saying disabled.... Wonder what they'll come up with next year! Of course these parents are discriminating. What are these children going to do when they see a disabled person on the street? Run screaming? It's for the better to be introduced to people that look different as early as possible.
KAEB06 KAEB06 8 years
I think this is really sad. Let's blame the person with a disability instead of teaching our children to be excepting of all people.....
macgirl macgirl 8 years
@RunninginBoston there are just so many horrible people out there. People who can't handle anything different than what they know. Its sad. If they allowed anonymous comments here you would see the ugly.
RunninginBoston RunninginBoston 8 years
Funny how none of the 11 people who think she shouldn't be host have explained their position in the comments.
Lyv Lyv 8 years
"Differently abled".. lol I don't like it, it sounds patronizing and takes longer to pronounce. Anyway. What's wrong with those people? That's no way to raise a child. If it were my own kids who were having nightmares with a lady just cause her arm isn't whole, they'd get smacked the prejudice out of them! :)
mhg mhg 8 years
amen tabithacraft! as the mother of a "differently abled" or "special needs" little guy (or whatever else you want to call it), it makes me happy to read all these posts. and i haven't found a description that fits my 3 1/2-year-old son (he's on the autism spectrum). i don't really like any of them!
tabithacraft tabithacraft 8 years
The parents who have complained are crazy - both my young sons watch this presenter and it is ludicrous to suggest that it would cause nightmares. Children aren't born with prejudice - parents teach them either prejudice or tolerance. My sons (3 and 1 and a half) haven't even noticed yet.
kikidawn kikidawn 8 years
:) it's quite alright
pinkprincess1101 pinkprincess1101 8 years
kiki i wish more people viewed children or anyone in general with a disability the way you put it. sorry i didnt write that in my first message to you.
pinkprincess1101 pinkprincess1101 8 years
"Don't call them "disabled". Recognize that they are a person first and not defined by the disability." thanks kiki that was so much better
kikidawn kikidawn 8 years
I agree with all above. For those that find the term "differently abled " patronizing.... The correct way to refer to a person with a disability is to say it like that: "person with a disability". Don't call them "disabled". Recognize that they are a person first and not defined by the disability. I just got done taking a Special Education class and that was the way we had to speak in class and on our tests. It is the most polite way to refer to a person with a disability other than just using their name! A lot of the communities are starting to speak this way. It's not autistic kid... it's child with autism. I didn't know the correct way before class, but I definitely practice it now and share it with everyone.
Chrstne Chrstne 8 years
I think a lot of parents pawn things off on "the children" because they themselves are not okay with something. Kids need to learn that people look different, come in different shapes and sizes, and everyone should be treated equally. This is how we teach hate to younger generations, by saying that if a person isn't what society views as "normal" then they are not okay. You wonder why kids bully kids to the point of killing, or why children are so rude to people they know nothing about because they don't act or look like they do. The parents are absolutely to blame. If they want their kids to be accepting, they need to start teaching acceptance. I hear many late 30 somethings, and of course people older than them talk about how in "their day" minorities were bad, etc. That is some messed up thinking -- and those people who were bred to be un-accepting are now teaching their children to be that way, but just about different issues. Seriously, the people who claim to be mature adults with children shock me. I know 11 year olds who behave better than those parents. It goes to show you that just because you have kids, and you think you are doesn't actually make it true. If parents really wanted what was best for their kids, they'd start learning that being disabled in many ways is just a part of life. Sorry that it may go against their 1950's way of thinking. ...and I, too, hate "differently abled". It sounds patronizing. I say disabled or handicapped.
ang1885 ang1885 8 years
I remember having disabled students in class with me and not knowing how to act because I was never around someone disabled before so I think this is helping kids see and learn about differences and challenges some people and some children have to go through.
meandtheo meandtheo 8 years
i agree macgirl it is "very sad". just when i think people are finally getting things right and not teaching hate, i read something like this. one step forward two steps back.
macgirl macgirl 8 years
The parents reactions make me very sad.
pinkprincess1101 pinkprincess1101 8 years
encourage not in encourse, we need spell check back
Greggie Greggie 8 years
I agree skigurl. I cannot wrap my mind around why she'd be an inappropriate or undesirable host.
pinkprincess1101 pinkprincess1101 8 years
I would think people would encourse this woman instead of knock her down, it scares the hell out of me for my son that people are like this with someone without an arm (who is probably very independant) can you imagine something a little more severe like Cerebral Palsy (which my son has), i hope the rest of the world is not as arrogant as these parents.
skigurl skigurl 8 years
i'd love to hear an explanation from the people who don't feel she's an appropriate host....i'm not being sarcastic either...i would love to hear an argument on the other side of this coin because i also, for the life of me, cannot figure out why someone would have a problem with this...she's missing half her arm, she doesn't have 2 heads
Greggie Greggie 8 years
I cannot for the life of me figure out why someone would have a problem with her being a host. People are stupid. I also hate the term "differently abled."
Renees3 Renees3 8 years
wow that's really sad that parents are acting that way. Awesome way to teach your children about difference and tolerance
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