The Internet can be a beautiful place where people come together to help out their fellow man. A place where funds are raised for victims of a house fire, or an accident, or if they need to bury a loved one who has passed. It’s amazing in so many ways.
On the other hand, some people decide to spew their ignorance and hate anonymously from behind their keyboards. Some vile people spend their days trying to tear others down, and the worst of the worst are those that talk about kids.
Especially sick or disabled kids. This is a loathsome practice and I don’t see how anyone can be so cruel, but it happens.
One mom has had to deal with some people saying that her daughter shouldn’t exist. Her name is Natalie Weaver and she is not taking it anymore. She has started standing up for her daughter and herself.
Natalie’s daughter, Sophia is nine years old and has a condition called Rett’s disease. Rett’s disease is a condition of the neurological system, and it hinders speech, breathing, eating and movements. She is also a type 1 diabetic, and suffers from an immune system deficiency. She also has disfigurement of the facial region.
People w/ facial deformities experience a lot of cruelty.
The Hate & Stares I received when Sophia was a baby were painful & made me hide away for 7yrs.
I decided over a year ago to stand up & fight against this!
I will not be silenced by hate! Thank you for supporting us! pic.twitter.com/oJr2FgUGAL
— Natalie Weaver (@Nataliew1020) January 21, 2018
Instead of showing sympathy and love for this little girl with so many challenges, some people have been hateful and made some horrible remarks concerning her.
Natalie has started a mission to depict life with Sophia, but not just in the vein of her disabilities. She is determined to show the normal, everyday things that they experience as well.
Natalie is a dedicated advocate for kids with complicated medical needs and disabilities. Last year, she began a thread on Twitter in order to show Sophia’s life and personality.
Her all-time favorite color is Green! Sometimes she can even say Green. She loves all types of music and will pat her hand to the beat, perfectly. She enjoys popping bubbles and having us read to her. She also rolls her eyes at mommy and is sassy, just like a typical 9-year-old. pic.twitter.com/AJIJWWZf6D
— Natalie Weaver (@Nataliew1020) November 15, 2017
She posted a sweet photo of Sophia with her daddy, and captioned it with remarks about how she is a daddy’s girl, and how when she smiles, she gets dimples beneath her eyes. How sweet, right?
She is a major daddy’s girl! She laughs all the time and has sweet dimples under her eyes when she smiles. pic.twitter.com/7KM1IRblFX
— Natalie Weaver (@Nataliew1020) November 15, 2017
Another one shows Sophia enjoying being outdoors and popping bubbles. Natalie says Sophia’s favorite color is green, and she can even say the word green sometimes. She also says the little girl loves music of all kinds and taps her hand to the beat with perfect rhythm! Another favorite activity is being read to by her mom and dad.
She also reveals that Sophia gets sassy just as any typical 9 year old does when she rolls her eyes!
Nobody should have any issue with these posts, but of course someone always has to come along and ruin the party, don’t they?
A really twisted person decided to comment some vile things under what was a lovely post.
They basically said that not every child matters. They insinuated that amniocentesis testing should be forced on all pregnant moms and if it proves something wrong with the child, they should be aborted. They further claim that if a Mom chooses to keep a baby that will have problems, they shouldn’t receive any help with medical bills afterwards.
What a sick way of thinking.
It doesn’t matter whether you are pro-life or pro-choice, your opinion on whether someone’s life matters is not relevant. This person should have kept their mouth shut, and their nasty opinions to themselves.
Natalie Weaver was disgusted that someone would say these things regarding her daughter and blocked the offensive person immediately. To her horror, it became evident that the image had been screenshotted and was being shared other places.
She and many supporters quickly reported it to Twitter, and two days later they finally responded. Their initial response was disgusting as well. The social media company told this upset mother that the tweeter using her child’s likeness without her permission wasn’t in violation of any rules of the website.
She pressed the issue, and refused to back down. She made another complain and finally Twitter suspended the person who made such a gross tweet about an innocent little girl, and issued an apology to Natalie.
This is the interview I did w/ @MichelleBoudin about the troll who used Sophia’s image for months to promote eugenics. This is why I’m asking @Twitter @TwitterSupport @jack to include hate against people w/ disabilities in their violation reporting tool & not just in their policy pic.twitter.com/zsBwxOHN7p
— Natalie Weaver (@Nataliew1020) February 8, 2018
Natalie talks about how difficult it has been to deal with this situation. She talks about how sharing her story in order to pressure Twitter to do the right thing has gone viral, and even though there are many who support her, there are still people who are using it to support their own agendas.
She is attempting to change Twitter’s policy on reporting offensive tweets to include hate speech towards those with disabilities, because currently that isn’t an option in the reporting process.
Anyone with such hate in their heart, and no regard for other people‘s feelings will certainly find any technicality to take advantage of, and adding a category to include those with disabilities being picked on or made fun of more help cut down on some of the violations of these innocent people.
Hopefully her actions will lead to the much needed change.
Best wishes to Natalie Weaver, her precious daughter Sophia, and the rest of their family.
Feel free to make a donation to Advocates For Medically Fragile Kids NC HERE