ABC’s “What Would You Do?” Brings Disability-related Issues to Primetime--Tuesday, February 22!

by Amy Saffell

We’ve all dealt with people who struggle to see past our disabilities to the true core of who we are:  our capabilities, our ambitions, and our passions. Sometimes when I’m being treated with a lack of understanding and respect, I retreat from the situation as quickly as possible, but I often wonder if those people ever do come around in their thinking or if possibly a lack of people with disabilities in their lives leads to continued ignorance. After all, these kinds of lessons are usually learned from a personal connection with someone, not from far-reaching media stories...until now

ABC’s show “What Would You Do?” puts actors in morally compromising or discriminatory situations and shows if the public around them comes to the aid of those in the situation. Hosted by ABC News veteran John Quinones, the show sheds light on many of modern society’s injustices. When they hosted a contest to find a new scenario to film, I jumped at the chance to tell them about experiences that I’ve had relating to my disability. As time went by, I honestly forgot all about it, so imagine my surprise several months later when someone from the show called to tell me that I had been selected out of 12,000 applicants to fly to New York for the taping of the show. I was so excited that not only would I be going to get to experience the lights, the shows, and, of course, the shopping in New York, but also, and most importantly, that viewers would get the chance to hear my story.

You’ll have to watch on Tuesday night, February 22 to see how it pans out, but I was so grateful to the producers for taking such care in making sure that these issues were handled with accuracy and respect. Everyone took a genuine interest in making this episode a success, and it was an honor to be involved, to meet everyone, and to see how the production entailed. It truly was an experience of a lifetime that I’ll never forget. I hope that, because of this show, we all have a little easier time with those who don’t truly know us for who we are.        

5 comments:

  1. I already program my DVR to record it. Tonight I was watching WWYD and I started googling if there was something about accessible parking or disabilities and I found out that they will show this story next week!!! It's awesome! I don't know what it is exactly about but I am so ready to watch it. I have an 11 year old boy with cerebral palsy who uses a wheelchair for mobility. It is sad that there's a lot of people who don't respect other's rights... I'm glad I found out about this coming up WWYD! Thanks!

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  2. Hey Amy! I'm so glad you posted about this--I can't wait for the show! And congrats on being famous too!

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  3. Amy,

    I LOVED the segment!!! It reminded me a lot about what I've been through before, and I'm thrilled you brought those scenarios to Prime Time! I was also impressed by a lot of the bystanders who stepped in to defend the woman who was portraying you. Awesome job!!

    Cheryl

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  4. I salute these women with physical developmental disabilities. Their triumph is a great story and serves as an inspiration for others.

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  5. Maybe the people I'm used to are different than the ones this girl has dealt with, but I don't find people asking me if I need help to be patronizing at all. Sure, I try to be independent, but every now and then, I NEED HELP! Unfortunately, no one ever offers me help. They just walk by, minding their own business, thinking they're going to offend me or something if they lend a hand. And frankly, the young woman in this segment is contributing to that nonsensical way of thinking! Do be offended if people offer you help! I understand that the actress in the show was pretending to basically treat her like a child, but that was just over-the-top. No one even says "boo" to me, and now I know why.

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