The Independent Living Philosophy- what does it mean? What implications and sacrifices made by so many got it to where it stands now? Years and untold stories brought it to this and now on the verge of drastic change, just a push away we find ourselves plunging head forth into history... So many heros defiant and proud wearing the mask of disability, standing tall to society uncumbered in their vigor; their minds and their beliefs fueled a whole generation of protest and struggle for change.

We are the legacy of forgotten soldiers who embattled societal and public condemnation to empower themselves coming together in the face of all odds. It was neither their fault nor their choice, disability happens... life happens and continues to do so. We, they, all of us must move forward and continue to embrace the blessing of life and its precious unfolding. To do so we must empower and support each other as did the Elders of this movement.

Independent living is freedom of choice, oppurtunity to experience whatever entices the senses or stirs the soul. We, human, in need of passion and inspiration, dream as others dream, hungering for brilliant fulfillment, intoxicating life and the right to. Grand oppurtunity is the whole reason, the fuel behind the fight and the struggle. Those who die today in nursing homes locked behind stained walls and insect quarters alone will forever haunt the minds of post generations. Ghosts with faces carrying the lost despair of friends lost to circumstance. We must do it for the young ones coming into disability now wide eyed and uncertain.

Empower yourself brothers and sisters. You are needed to help. Start with yourself, your life, your situation, change it if you can little by little until reality mirrors your dream and your fancy. Then strong of mind you will lead others to help the others and in this way the movement will live on and grow stronger.

Dec 31.1997