The clip above comes from How's Your News: Election 2012, the latest film from this traveling group of people with disabilities who report on various events. This scene bears its own examination as it is a literal illustration of the way that people with disabilities are ignored in this country, especially by grandstanding politicians. It's particularly important for showing the resulting frustration: Jeremy Vest (who has Williams Syndrome) actually calls out to Bachmann, "What's your problem?" For as much as How's Your News films are about its reporters (whose numbers, by the way, are down from five to three, after the 2010 death of Ronnie Simonsen and the 2011 death of Larry Perry) and how hilarious and charismatic they are, the moves are also very much about people's reactions to the reporters. Bobby Bird is particularly revealing — his speech is rarely intelligible and watching people like Mitt Romney attempting to figure out how to react is a terrific Rorschach not just for these people's kindness but also their quickness on their feet. Some people come off looking terrible in this movie — Condoleezza Rice refuses a picture but thanks Susan "Obama Mama" Harrington "for working" as she hurries past. Some end up redeeming themselves — Barney Frank initially ignores the group and but then ends up having a conversation about tolerance with Vest. You get a sense from a lot of these politicians that they'd rather turn a blind eye but then realize the implications of doing so in this age of surveillance, that any perceived slip-up could mean nationwide ridicule via viral video. I asked Bradford about the overall treatment of his group at both conventions. "In general I'd say the 'handlers' took their job of protecting their politicians a little too far," he wrote. "A convention is a media event and politicians shouldn't act like they are being tasked with something unreasonable when a person with a disability asks for 30 seconds of their time."
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