Top 5 for 2014: Ramp Your Voice! Blog Articles in Review

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To say that the Ramp Your Voice! blog has been a popular hot spot in 2014 would be an understatement – the website had 9,411 (and counting!) views for this year, which was a 476% increase from 2013.  I was quite surprised at the high number views and shares for many articles on the blog, which reaffirmed that the articles written undeniably have a purpose and are imperative to the disabled community.

For the final blog post of 2014, I wanted to spotlight the articles that received the most views and shares.  The articles highlighted are a few that I enjoyed writing, and I believe that readers could feel my writing enthusiasm leap from the screen with each word.  Writing is indeed an ardent passion of mine, and I am very fortunate to share my talent with each of you.
WIthout further ado, here are the top 5 articles of 2014 on the RYV! blog:
5)  Harper Makes Her Debut in Archie Comics Issue 656!
This post allowed my Blerd (blerd = black nerd, Millennial slang) side to surface on the blog with the debut of Harper, the sassy, fashionista, disabled cousin of the comic’s socialite Veronica Lodge.  Archie is a childhood comic favorite of mine, and to learn of this kind of inclusion within this popular brand made my nerdy heart fill with joy.  Harper’s presence means so much to disabled girls and women like myself, and I was very pleased with her debut in this issue.  I look forward to seeing more of Harper in the comic series as time continues, and I hope that more disabled characters are created to afford disabled comic book readers an opportunity to see someone who looks like them in illustrated form.
4)  Bullying of Students with Disabilities: An Epidemic in Our Schools
This was one of several articles on the blog that was hard to write due to the sensitive nature of the topic.  Bullied disabled students are a reality in our schools, and we cannot ignore this problematic epidemic.  All of us – parents/guardians, educators and administrators, helping professionals, community leaders, and concerned community members – have a responsibility and an obligation to ensure that every student, regardless of ability, attend a school where they are accepted for who, what, and how they are; safe from harm, abuse, and harassment; free to express themselves; fully included in the school setting; and are properly educated without limits.  When one disabled student experiences bullying, our schools are not up to the standards of where they should be, and we should all work hard to get every school in this nation up to par.
3)  The George Takei Disabled Meme Controversy: The Offense, Response, & Public Apology
The disabled community was outrage by the inspirational porn-style meme Star Trek star George Takei shared on social media, and his ableist response to critics.  Though Takei did apologize for his offensive statement regarding the upsetting nature of the meme, it proved to be yet another example as to why our stories and voices matter, and should be taken seriously by those who are able-bodied.
2)  Rock the Disabled Vote in South Carolina!
I could not call myself a disabled advocate if I did not write about the various accessible means disabled South Carolinians could exercise their right to vote for the midterm election held last month.  People with disabilities have to educate themselves on the procedures in registering and casting their vote, and the technologies available for them to utilize.  An informed voter is an empowered voter, and this post, from the high number of views and shares, seemed to have been a reliable source of voting education for many disabled voters, within and outside the Palmetto State.
1)  The 3-Part Dating, Love, and Sex with a Disability Series, featuring the perspectives of disabled women:
Dating, Love, & Sex: The Experiences of Women with Disabilities (Part 1)
Let’s Talk About Sex [and disability], Baby! (Part 2)
Dating, Love, & Sex with a Disability (Part 3)
These 3 articles racked up the most views on the website for the year.  I knew that such a taboo subject would generate interest, but the buzz about these posts online exceeded my expectations.  Being someone who is unapologetic about expressing and vocalizing my femininity, womanhood, sensuality, and sexuality, I thoroughly enjoyed putting this series together, and seeing the responses on various social media platforms, particularly Facebook and Tumblr.  To allow the disabled women I know to be candid on such topics was a satisfying experience for everyone; needless to say, I will be writing more articles about love, sex, and romance with a disability in 2015.
Final Thoughts
2014 was an incredible year for me as a disabled writer and blogger.  I loved the responses to the articles published, and it energized me to write more captivating, controversial, and thought-provoking pieces in 2015.  My motto for my writing is the E.I.E. principle – Educate, Inform, Empower.  From what I saw in reviewing the statistics and responses on the blog this year, each post fulfilled this principle to the highest degree.
I look forward to hearing from my readers and supporters in the new year, especially when it comes to what topics and stories you want to read on the RYV! blog.
I am eager to make 2015 bigger and better than I can imagine; together, we can make that a reality!
Happy New Year, everyone!
(Featured headlining image:  Courtesy of Bank of the West.)

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