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Iditarod officials decide to reconsider blind musher's petition (What's next?)
Anchorage Daily News ^ | July 30, 2003 | ZAZ HOLLANDER

Posted on 07/30/2003 8:11:32 AM PDT by AlaskaErik

Edited on 07/07/2004 4:49:01 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]

WASILLA -- After putting off a decision in June, Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race officials will reconsider special accommodations for a legally blind Oregon teenager bent on competing next year.

Iditarod Board president Rick Koch has scheduled a special meeting for Sept. 19 with an agenda focused on two questions, Koch said Tuesday.


(Excerpt) Read more at adn.com ...


TOPICS: US: Alaska
KEYWORDS: abuse; ada; blindness; correct; iditarod; politically
Once again ADA is abused in order to fulfill personal ambitions. What's next...blind Indy race car drivers? When will the madness stop?
1 posted on 07/30/2003 8:11:32 AM PDT by AlaskaErik
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To: AlaskaErik
Obviously, the course should be paved, and have ramps installed at all the tough spots. Gotta be fair, you know.
2 posted on 07/30/2003 8:14:10 AM PDT by ClearCase_guy (France delenda est)
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To: AlaskaErik
Isn't the race a reinactment of an historical event?
3 posted on 07/30/2003 8:16:59 AM PDT by Rebelbase (In moderation of course.)
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To: AlaskaErik
I'm still surprised that the NBA hasn't had to install ramps around the baskets to help shorter people slam dunk. I'm sure it's coming. Of course, a separate lower "handicap only" basket should suffice, doncha' think?
4 posted on 07/30/2003 8:18:15 AM PDT by laweeks
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To: AlaskaErik
Will the first dog have to be painted white with a red head?
5 posted on 07/30/2003 8:18:22 AM PDT by bedolido (Quitters Never Win! Winners Never Quit! But those who never win and never quit are idiots!)
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To: AlaskaErik
Let her go with no snowmobiles, no radios. Let her get lost and suffer the consequences. Shame to waste all of those good dogs though.
6 posted on 07/30/2003 8:19:00 AM PDT by garyhope
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To: AlaskaErik
I want to compete in Olympic ice skating but I don't know how to ice skate. How do I go about applying for an exception, so two people can hold me up on the ice?
7 posted on 07/30/2003 8:19:14 AM PDT by JoeFromCA
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To: AlaskaErik
If the person is blind, then how is it they are actually guiding the sled? What ability have they proven? This doesn't seem to make any sense.
8 posted on 07/30/2003 8:19:57 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: AlaskaErik
Why don't they just teller her she's in the race and let her go off into the forest... keep tabs on her and give her a medal when you think she's gone far enough.
9 posted on 07/30/2003 8:21:26 AM PDT by bedolido (Quitters Never Win! Winners Never Quit! But those who never win and never quit are idiots!)
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To: AlaskaErik
"Race organizers are allowing her to use visual interpreters on snowmachines."

I assume the interpreters would be using wireless radio to communicate with her. This would be somewhat like 'spotters' during automotive race events.

If she's allowed, then ALL other competitors should have the same advantage of using spotters. It's only fair!...right?
10 posted on 07/30/2003 8:24:54 AM PDT by spoiler2
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To: Rebelbase
I believe it is a commemoration, or re-enactment of the dog sled run to deliver Diptheria medicine to Nome Alaska in the mid-1920's. The lead dog of one leg of the "race" was Balto. He has a statue to Central Park, NYC and was represented in an animated Disney movie.

There were in fact multiple teams, and while Balto got the glory, there were many other heroes.

11 posted on 07/30/2003 8:26:19 AM PDT by ClearCase_guy (France delenda est)
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To: AlaskaErik
I sadly acknowledged as a teenager that I'd never be a Major League baseball player. I'm now dealing with the fact that it is highly unlikely that I will ever be able to play golf for a living. Both circumstances are a result of my physical inability to compete fairly with those who do.

If I were to petition MLB to require pitchers to lob the ball in, or the PGA to give me strokes, I'd be laughed out of the building, and rightly so. But, if I chop off my leg, gouge out my eye, or maybe even acquire a disease, I may strengthen my case. This makes a tremendous amount of sense, does it not?

12 posted on 07/30/2003 8:28:26 AM PDT by Mr. Bird
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To: spoiler2
If she's allowed, then ALL other competitors should have the same advantage of using spotters. It's only fair!...right?

A good point. The idea of the spotters would be to tell her "You're off the trail, coming to a cliff, better turn around before you kill yourself." But imagine a sighted sledder, with no spotters, in a blizzard -- they'd be in danger of getting lost, right? or going over the cliff, right? I guess it's tough luck to you if you have no handicapps.

13 posted on 07/30/2003 8:29:00 AM PDT by ClearCase_guy (France delenda est)
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To: AlaskaErik
"I can assure you that an exclusionary decision such as the one taken by the (Iditarod board) ... is exactly what we in Congress intended to prevent when we enacted the ADA," Harkin wrote.

Spokesmen for the Senate were to confirm that his presence was thanks to a "reasonable accommodation" of his idiocy.

14 posted on 07/30/2003 8:31:39 AM PDT by Mr. Bird
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To: ClearCase_guy
Next question: Were any of the original mushers blind?
15 posted on 07/30/2003 8:38:06 AM PDT by Rebelbase (In moderation of course.)
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To: AlaskaErik
I think the NFL should be required to allow the use of motorized wheelchairs. For a few teams that might actually help.
16 posted on 07/30/2003 8:50:14 AM PDT by The Great RJ
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To: AlaskaErik
If they allow this, they should just go ahead and change the name of the race to "Idiotrod."

And "mush" would describe what's in their head.
17 posted on 07/30/2003 8:53:05 AM PDT by Iwo Jima
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To: AlaskaErik
The race officials will give in....with eyes wide shut.
18 posted on 07/30/2003 8:54:19 AM PDT by anniegetyourgun
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
If the person is blind, then how is it they are actually guiding the sled? What ability have they proven?

I believe that it is called "riding."
19 posted on 07/30/2003 8:54:37 AM PDT by Iwo Jima
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To: AlaskaErik
This is laughable..
Although the dogs are not blind, to allow this, someone surely is..
I live by the headquarters of the Iditarod.. These guys are idiots to even consider such a thibg. Obviously the sheer size of Alaska the varied kinds of terrain, weather during those months and difficulty for even a sigted person are unknown to these people. Maybe with another dog team following but that would defeat the purpose of the race. I say let the blind guy do something easier and safer like mountain climbing.
20 posted on 07/30/2003 8:54:46 AM PDT by hosepipe
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To: AlaskaErik
There are times when all the mushers are blind. If you are lucky enough to have a great lead dog, you will be all right. Of course, you are trusting your welfare to a dog and who knows what dogs really think?
21 posted on 07/30/2003 8:56:25 AM PDT by RightWhale (Destroy the dark; restore the light)
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To: RightWhale
I know what dogs think. You don't wanna know....it ain't pretty.
22 posted on 07/30/2003 9:00:01 AM PDT by anniegetyourgun
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To: AlaskaErik

Reno Air Racing Association officials decide to reconsider blind flier's petition

Reno Daily News ^ | July 30, 2004 |

Americans With Disabilities Act may apply for Massachusetts teenager

RENO, NV -- After putting off a decision in June, Reno Air Racing Association officials will reconsider special accommodations for a legally blind Massachusetts teenager bent on competing next year.

RARA Board president Bill Zed has scheduled a special meeting for Sept. 19 with an agenda focused on two questions, Zed said Tuesday.

Does the Americans With Disabilities Act apply to the US' only Unlimited Catagory air race -- a race in which last year the P-51 racer "Dago Red" qualified with a speed of 497.8 MPH?

And if it does, what can the board do to accommodate 18-year-old Aaron Whiner, who wants to fly with radio guidance?

Whiner formally petitioned the board in early June, but members did not specifically discuss his request then. They did, however, vote down Zed's proposal for a broader policy that would allow them to consider accommodation requests from any disabled entrants.

Later, RARA veterans said allowing radio assistance for Whiner would change the nature of the race and could jeopardize the safety of other teams.

Then, in early July, Whiner paid his entry fee and signed up for next year's race. Zed said he called for the September meeting after receiving numerous messages urging the board to take action.

"I decided we should talk about this again," he said.

Among letters sent to the board are several attention-grabbers: one from the attorney who represented disabled golfer Casey Martin in his successful U.S. Supreme Court bid to use a golf cart on the PGA Tour, one from U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and one from U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin, the Iowa Democrat who authored the ADA.

All three urge the board to allow Whiner, whom does not have a pilot's license because he cannot qualify for a medical certificate, to fly the race with the type of assistance he requested, and warn that a court battle over the RARA's ADA obligations could be lengthy. ZED is also challenging in court the FAA requirement that a pilot have a current medical certificate to act as pilot in command of an aircraft, claiming that such a requirement is discriminatory against the visually challenged... MORE...

23 posted on 07/30/2003 9:01:30 AM PDT by pabianice
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To: AlaskaErik
I only wish this was a parody.
24 posted on 07/30/2003 9:04:45 AM PDT by Fzob (Why does this tag line keep showing up?)
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To: Iwo Jima
But riding implies that they are not participating in the movement of the sled. If that is true, why even bother having riders? Let the dogs do all the work, and get all the glory, when they win.
25 posted on 07/30/2003 9:06:20 AM PDT by Pan_Yans Wife ("Life isn't fair. It's fairer than death, is all.")
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To: Pan_Yans Wife
I can't see that a blind driver's abilities are being tested, other than the ability to hang on and not fall off. Balance, in other words. Now, the ability of the dogs of a blind driver would be severely tested.
26 posted on 07/30/2003 9:35:54 AM PDT by Iwo Jima
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To: pabianice
I've always joked about a blind person wanting to fly and using ADA as a vehicle to do so. At first I thought this was an Onion spoof, but sadly, I realize that it isn't. How far will we go with this ADA crap until Americans come to their senses?
27 posted on 07/30/2003 1:06:24 PM PDT by AlaskaErik
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