When Americans remember the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt rarely do they even think about the fact that Roosevelt was paralyzed from the waist down from polio and confined to a wheelchair from the age of 39 when he contracted that disease.
A big reason for this is because FDR himself was careful to conceal his disability as much as possible. He believed that the public wasn’t ready to accept a leader confined to a wheelchair. As a result, he tortured his body to walk and stand for periods of time using a cane and gripping the arm of a person (usually one of his sons) to steady him. Disabilities were unfortunately frowned upon by society in those days. Consequently, he didn’t want to give political opponents the opportunity to use his disability against him.
Likely, he was correct to fear this possibility because unfortunately there are always politicians willing to stoop low enough to employ such a strategy if they become desperate enough.
Case in point—Wendy Davis.
As you’ve likely seen by now, Davis is now officially desperate. Down fourteen points in the polls, Davis put out an ad featuring a wheelchair and describing Abbott’s injury from a falling tree branch thirty years ago and his subsequent disability.
It’s a stretch but about the only mildly positive effect this ad is having is that it’s unifying Democrats and Republicans in universal condemnation of Davis for running such an awful ad. Even the reliably liberal media is aghast that Davis would stoop so low with the Washington Post stating that “Wendy Davis is running one of the nastiest campaign ads you will ever see.”
This isn’t the first time Davis has tried to make Abbott’s disability an issue in the campaign. She began her run for Texas governor with the slogan “Stand with Wendy” which most people believed was her attempt to subliminally remind voters that Greg Abbott can’t stand at all.
Most shocking of all is that after Davis has been roundly condemned from all sides for her wretched ad, she’s still defending it, even hosting an event to highlight it. As a person, many are now decrying Davis as evil and as a politician there’s little doubt that on top of being completely unqualified to serve as governor, she’s utterly inept.
Historians today argue whether or not FDR’s obsession with disguising his disability and his wheelchair (there are only three known photographs of him in the wheelchair) was truly necessary. They believe that the public likely would have accepted and overlooked his disability.
Politicians like Wendy Davis prove sadly that FDR likely was correct in his approach. By keeping the public from outwardly seeing his disability, he managed to make it a nonissue in each of his presidential campaigns and none of his Republican opponents were ever heartless and callous enough to call attention to it.
Wendy Davis should be ashamed of herself, but she’s not. Instead, she continues to reveal herself as a narcissist utterly lacking in compassion or common sense and therefore completely unqualified to govern Texas or any other state for that matter.