I recently came across two interesting data points that made me start thinking: “What if the Majority of the Population had Dyslexia?”
The first was an interesting blog titled “Using “Correct Language” And “People First” by Ira David Socol “ that described how commonly known word categorizations often demean the objects of these categorizations. For example, learning disabled, assumes that the people in this category are disabled. If you look up the definition of the word “disabled” in the Webster dictionary you get the following definition:
Disabled: “incapacitated by illness or injury; also : physically or mentally impaired in a way that substantially limits activity especially in relation to employment or education”.
The second data point that came my way was actually a tweet from a twitter called dughall that simply stated “Dyslexia is not so much about learning ‘difficulties’, but about learning ‘differences’.”
As a ‘heavy’ dyslexic, these two data points triggered a thread of thought. For years I have been told that I had a learning disability called dyslexia. The “regular” school system targets “normal” students. The teaching methods, the facilities are all designed for these “normal” students. The system was not designed for people with dyslexia. If you have dyslexia then you need to get special tutoring, purchase assistive technology, request for special testing conditions etc.
Two facts are well known about dyslexics:
1) Dyslexia has NOTHING to do with intelligence. Some of humanity’s top contributors are known to have been dyslexic. (You can see the cool video “The Power Of Dyslexia about Famous Dyslexics”)
2) Dyslexic’s reading and writing processing is performed differently then the “normal” population
It is estimated that 5% to 17% of the population has dyslexia. But what if the majority of the population had dyslexia? What if the majority of the population processed their reading and writing just as dyslexics do?
Then what… Well then… Probably the schools would include in their “regular” Reading and Writing teachings programs that are tuned for dyslexics… Probably leading Word Processing vendors such as Microsoft and Apple would include in their core product what is known today as “Writing and Reading Assistive” technologies… Probably English would have naturally evolved to a language with a higher letter and sound correspondence rate, with less English irregularities (see “Ghoti”) and more simplified English spelling …
People with Dyslexia simply have learning differences then the rest of the population…It is only because the “system” is designed today for “normal” people that dyslexics have learning difficulties… and it is only because of how the “normal” people categorize dyslexics that they (we) are called “learning disabled”…