Victoria Wright är skådespelare, och sågs senast i engelska TV-serien "Cast offs". Med anledning av den högljudda debatten efter komikern Frankie Boyles uppträdande i veckan - där han häcklade personer med Down syndrom - så skriver hon en egen text i the Guardian. Jag citerar texten i sin helhet.
"I know what it's like to be mocked by famous comedians. Five years ago, after I appeared in a BBC television documentary, Ricky Gervais, Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington joked about my facial disfigurement on their XFM radio show. Pilkington called me "the woman with the big head, like Bo' Selecta". In the next show, Merchant said it was great I hadn't complained and that I was clearly a bigger person than Pilkington – "at least head-wise". And Gervais asked Pilkington where I would come in his "freak of the year list". There were also jokes about "midgets" and how it's hard to remember that people with facial disfigurements are human because they don't look human. Hilarious stuff, eh?
I do wonder why, in the 21st century, non-disabled people still have a problem with us. Are we really so frightening? Last year I played April in the Channel 4 drama series Cast Offs. On the show's Facebook page, a man posted the message, "April is so damn ugly, she gives me nightmares". I replied "Boo!" but alas both messages were removed before I could suggest any sleeping remedies.
Angela Carter once said that comedy is tragedy that happens to other people. As many people think the worst tragedy that can happen is being disabled, perhaps that is why we are seen as fair game. Or maybe it's because non-disabled people develop their perceptions about disability from what they see on TV, where we are habitually portrayed as "tragic but brave" or "bitter and twisted".
There certainly weren't many disabled or funny-looking people on TV when I was a child. All I saw was Worf from Star Trek: The Next Generation and Dumbo. But neither a bad-tempered Klingon nor an elephant with large ears were a helpful role model for a teenage girl. But it was either them or the blessedly chinned Bruce Forsyth. So I understand that Frankie Boyle isn't entirely to blame. He probably saw Benny off Crossroads once and the image of bad hair and woolly hats has stayed with him.
I would describe my sense of humour as dark, and liberal. Jimmy Carr's joke about soldiers and the Paralympic team made me chuckle – because I thought, "He's right. We could have a really shit-hot Paralympic team in 2012." It didn't cross my line in terms of offensiveness – but it did cross other people's.
Humour is subjective. But I empathise with the mother who complained about Boyle. Five years on, the jokes Pilkington, Merchant and Gervais made about me still hurt. Jokes last. The podcasts are in the public domain – and probably will be for the rest of my life. The question is, will people go on laughing?"
(bilden är från the Guardian)