Beautiful and Boisterous

Abuzz with all kinds of able bodies, moving through Washington was a special pleasure yesterday. If you are familiar with this city you know that a nice day draws everyone outside. Since spring has blossomed, tourists, congressmen, lobbyists, consultants and academics are all converging on one opinion (how rare!) - good weather = good times.

On our walk we passed by a protest behind the White House that struck us. An orange banner extending half the length of the road loudly read "Demanding Community." Celebrating 25 years of the Americans with Disabilities Act, signed into law on July 26th, 1990, the protesters shared their struggle to feel equality in today's American community.

The banner says it all

The banner says it all

As a group that is acutely familiar with said struggle, we were awestruck by the ability of these individuals to proactively work towards positive policies and programs.

Complete coincidence then led us to the original copy of the act, housed in the National Archives. It is "An Act To establish a clear and comprehensive prohibition of discrimination on the basis of disability." Former Senator Tom Harkin, who introduced the American with Disabilities Act on the Senate floor, delivered part of his 1989 speech in sign language so his deaf brother could understand.

Reflecting on our outdoor adventure and field trip to the house where Littera scripta manet (the written letter abides) a line from the Magna Carta of 1297 summed up our thoughts perfectly:

"To no one will we sell, to no one will we deny or delay, right or justice."

Since the Magna Carta inspired the founding fathers, the liberties from this 13th century document are centrally enshrined in the Archives Rotunda documents.

The Constitution. The Declaration of Independence. The Bill of Rights.

We the people seek to form a more perfect Union while we hold the self-evident truth that all men are created equal and hope that we achieve the equality and justice these and other protesters seek in this great nation.