Ableism is a lesser-known word, but it is one in which we should all get an education. Ableism is discrimination or prejudice against people who have disabilities. The bias can be in the form of words, actions, or thoughts, and it can be subtle or overt, and it exists in many forms. This article will discuss what ableism is, some examples, and what you can do to fight against it.

Ableist Meaning

Ableism defines “the belief that people with disabilities are inferior to those without disabilities.” This belief is harmful and perpetuates discrimination against disabled people.

Learning about ableism is vital because it’s a pervasive and often invisible form of discrimination. People with disabilities experience a lot of exclusion and prejudice, and it’s essential to be aware of this so that we can work to eliminate it. Learning about ableism can help us be more inclusive and welcoming of people with disabilities and create a more just and equitable society.

Examples Of Ableism

There are many ways that ableism manifests itself in our society. One way is through physical barriers, such as buildings that are not accessible to people with disabilities. This can make it difficult or impossible for people with disabilities to participate in many activities and limit their independence.

Another way ableism manifests itself is through attitudinal barriers, which are negative attitudes or beliefs about people with disabilities. These attitudes can lead to discrimination and exclusion, making it difficult for people with disabilities to participate in society fully.

Additionally, ableism can manifest itself through systemic barriers, which are structural impediments that make it harder for people with disabilities to access services, education, employment, and other opportunities.

More Examples Of Ableism:

  • making assumptions about what someone with a disability can or cannot do
  • using ableist language (e.g., “lame,” “crazy,” “ retarded”)
  • excluding people with disabilities from activities or events
  • treating people with disabilities as if they are a burden
  • not accommodating for someone’s needs because of their disability

Types Of Ableism

There are a few different types of ableism. The first type is intentional ableism.

Intentional Ableism

This is when someone says or does something harmful to disabled people. An example would be someone calling a disabled person a “retard” or “cripple.”

Unintentional Ableism

The second type of ableism is unintentional ableism. Unintentional ableism is when someone says or does something harmful to disabled people without meaning to. An example of this would be someone using the word “crazy” to describe a situation that is not crazy.

Institutional Ableism

The third type of ableism is institutional ableism. Institutional ableism is when an organization or institution has policies or practices harmful to disabled people. An example of this would be a school that does not have an accessible entrance for wheelchair users.

Environmental Ableism

The fourth type of ableism is environmental ableism. Environmental ableism is when the physical environment gets neglected to be accessible or safe for disabled people. An example would be a building with stairs but no elevator or a sidewalk with a curb too high for someone in a wheelchair to get over.

What Is Anti Ableism

Anti-ableism is when someone speaks out against discrimination or hate against people with disabilities. It is a movement to create a more inclusive society for everyone, regardless of ability.

The anti-ableism movement has been gaining momentum in recent years as more and more people speak out against the discrimination and hate that people with disabilities face daily. There is still a long way to go, but the movement is slowly but surely making progress.

One of the anti-ableism movement’s main goals is to change how people think about disability.

Too often, people see disability as a negative thing, something to be pitied or feared. The anti-ableism movement is working to change this perception and show that people with disabilities can lead happy, fulfilling lives like anyone else.

Another goal of the anti-ableism movement is to make society more accessible for people with disabilities.

This includes making buildings and public transportation more accessible and ensuring that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else.

What Is Internalized Ableism

Internalized ableism refers to how people with disabilities accept negative attitudes about themselves and their abilities. Internalized ableism can be a complex process involving feeling ashamed or inferior to others.

Internalized ableism can lead to lowered self-esteem and discourage people from seeking out their support. It can also make advocating for oneself or others with disabilities challenging.

Coping With Ableism

There are a few key things that you can do if you find yourself struggling with internalized ableism.

First, it is essential to remember that you are not alone. Many other people with disabilities share their experiences and feelings.

Second, connecting with other people with disabilities can help you feel less isolated and more supported.

Finally, aim to challenge your negative beliefs about yourself and your abilities. Challenging yourself can be a complicated process, but it is worth it.

How To Stop Ableism

There are many things that you can do to fight against ableism. Here are some suggestions:

  • educate yourself and others about ableism and disability rights
  • be an ally to people with disabilities
  • use inclusive language that respects the dignity of all people
  • advocate for accessibility and accommodations for people with disabilities
  • support organizations that work to end ableism and empower people with disabilities


Ableism is a significant problem in our society, but it is something that we can work to change. By increasing our awareness of ableism and its effects, we can take steps to dismantle the barriers that people with disabilities face. We can also work to create a more inclusive society that values and respects the contributions of people with disabilities.

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