A Perversely Ironic Vlog

There is something sickeningly, perversely ironic in supposedly being lectured on disability rights and inclusion by a woman who treats her disabled sister so patronisingly. I just came across this video from Hannah and Becky Cheetham. On the face of it, it’s a follow-up vlog relating to a previous video the sisters made about their mistreatment at Alton Towers: they had visited the theme park, and had been treated so appallingly – denied access to rides, facilities – that they felt they had to complain. This visit, it would seem, things are much better.

Yet I still have the same reservations about their dynamic that I had back in January. Watching the video, it’s still apparent that the older, able bodied sister, Becky, is speaking for her sister, no matter how much she tries to claim otherwise: she talks down to Becky, cuing her to speak, asking her patronising questions. The infuriating thing is, this is in a video claiming to be about disability rights, trying to highlight the discriminatory treatment Hannah got at Alton Towers. Yet from the very beginning of the film Becky Cheetham talks to her sister like she’s addressing a five year old, who is just shown squealing a bit and speaking only when cued. It is clear that the able-bodied sister is in charge: in fact, I’d go even further and say that she clearly wants the video to be about her and how she looks after her disabled sister. Hannah’s mistreatment by the theme park is a good way to attract viewers, striking back against discrimination of minorities being all the rage on Youtube. Yet for all that, the video is clearly being made by and about Becky. Note, for example, the couple of half-second cut-away close-ups of Becky making ironic/sarcastic comments. It is clear she is the one in the editorial driving seat, and is merely using her disabled sister to play off.

Perhaps I should just keep out of it; perhaps I should just let these sisters make their videos in peace. Hannah seems quite content participating with them, although, having not been able to communicate with her directly, I can’t be sure. Yet, were someone to try to treat me like this, expecting me to sit there and squeal, pushing buttons on my communication aid when cued while someone else does all the talking for me, I think I would like to be told that there are other options, and ways in which I could describe my experiences for myself.

5 thoughts on “A Perversely Ironic Vlog

  1. All the disabled people I know dislike these sisters intensely. It’s all about the narcissistic non-disabled sister and some of the messages they send out are damaging.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. worrying if they want to be in to disability right why the non disabled girl isn’t listening to DISABLED PEOPLE not thinking she can speak for her (and us )

        Liked by 1 person

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