Is "Different" A Bad Thing?
Imagine you have a room full of young children. Maybe a kindergarten class, or a bunch of kiddos gathered together for a birthday party. A dozen little ones or more. Now imagine that every child has brown hair... except one. One little girl with a beautiful head of bright red curls. If any of the other children in the room noticed and pointed out her hair, what would you do? Would you silence them, tell them they were being rude, and insist they completely ignore the difference?
I hope not.
Because if you did any of those things, it would likely send the message to the little girl (and the group) that there is something wrong with having red hair. That, somehow, it's "bad." When something is different and good- we celebrate it! When someone is unusually beautiful, athletic, or intelligent we have no problem talking about it. But when the difference is "bad" we insist that everyone turn a blind eye to it. Don't acknowledge it. Pretend it's not there.
But it is there!
Change the situation. The little girl with red hair is now a little boy in a wheelchair. An adult with cerebral palsy. A teenager with Down Syndrome. Are you getting uncomfortable?