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YOUR DREAM ARE BIG ENOUGH THE FACTS DON'T COUNT!
Michael Long (as told to Karl Williams)
s/h - $3.00
umbilical cord was wrapped around my throat, and I lost a lot of
oxygen. There were 13 years of school, and I didn't enjoy 12-1/2
of them, because people were calling me 'retard."
first appointment of a person with a developmental disability by
any state government in the United States was made by Californias
Governor Pete Wilson in 1992 when he appointed Michael Long as the
Consumer Coordinator at the Department of Developmental Services."
Long...has been a visionary pioneer forging dreams of a future where
people with disabilities are living, working, learning and playing
in communities that recognize the value of all people. He is an
outspoken, courageous leader and hero in the Self Advocacy
movement...He has experienced the darkest side of discrimination
yet he carries no malice. I have personally witnessed the transformation
in others when they have been 'touched' by Michaelhe is a
unique and generous human being."
Laura L. Larson, Executive
Director, State of California Developmental Disabilities Board
Long tells the truth in this book. And truth about what it means
to be a human being is hard to come by."
Nancy Thaler, Deputy Secretary
for Mental Retardation, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
story is deceptively candid and truly intriguing. Clinically, Long
has mild cerebral palsy and mental retardation arising from difficulties
during his birth. Reading his life story in his words--getting inside
his head in a sense--is an eye-opening experience. His story is
not terrifically unique or absurd, which is part of the book's charm:
the "fact" of his disability did not stand in the way
of his dreams, nor should the reader's "disabilities,"
whether physical, mental or emotional, prevent them from fulfilling
their own dreams. The book is honest and forthright. Long's goal
with the book is to pass along his sense of confidence and fortitude,
and remind readers that no matter how insurmountable their problems
may seem, nothing is impossible. Long eventually became the first
person with a developmental disability to be appointed to a government
office by a state governor..."
TODAY'S LIBRARIAN, September, 2000, Copyright © 2000
by Virgo Publishing, Inc.
Excellent!...Michael Long is the success story, If Your Dreams...
is simply his way of sharing it with the world. In his words, as
told to Karl Williams, "We are people just like you."
Despite cerebral palsy and mental retardation inflicted at birth,
Michael is living his own American Dream, but he also inspires us
all to follow our own dreams. The title portrays his message; the
book illustrates it and gives us inspiration.
Michael's parents fought through 13 years of schooling to keep him
"mainstreamed" long before the term was ever thought of.
Michael was not limited to special education classes, but neither
was was limited to exposure to teasing, taunting and ridicule. Fellow
students were often heartless and cruel and many a teacher lacked
insight and told him that he would never lead a normal life.
Michael is a wise man and does not recall his past in order to place
blame for his pain, but rather, he is hoping to open the eyes of
educators today, to the desperate importance of their roles in the
lives of their students. Michael is a motivational speaker to thousands
of people, and now his words are being read and touching the lives
of many more. This is a must read for every educator and for every
person who has ever felt that their dreams were unreachable."
Reviewed by: Heather Froeschl for BookReview.com