The Scarlet Ibis Paper
“The Scarlet Ibis” Mr. P English II Living in a “Normal World” If you had a family member that had a physical disability, would you treat them the same with precautions or would you treat them differently? People may think life would be easier for a life as a disabled person but truly it is extremely hard. They have to deal with looks from people they don’t know, and from their family treating them differently. In The Scarlet Ibis, by James Hurst, Doodle, is a handicapped little boy. Everyone says that he will not be able to do most things that kids without disabilities can do but Doodle’s brother never gives up on trying.
Families that have a handicapped must treat that person with the utmost respect. One part of respecting a person is to have appropriate expectations for them. “I wanted a brother. But Mama, crying, told me that even if William Armstrong lived, he would never do these things with me. He might not, she sobbed, even be ‘all there’” (90). Although Doodle was born with disabilities, he has two eyes, two legs, two ears and he is just like everyone else. Doodle was born with a health condition that did make him different from other kids his own age, but that does not mean he is not allowed to live his life as others live theirs.
From birth Doodle was told he would not be able to do the things that others have because he has a heart condition. Yet, Doodle is still a person and no matter what happens in life he should be treated the way others want to be treated. All Doodle wants to do is live life to the fullest and that is how it shall be. Families with handicapped members have to set forward for all of the positive outcomes of life, other than have a bunch of negatives. If you lead a handicapped with only negative expectations, as like Doodle, he will never have the full amount of respect for you, as well as your other family members.
As people know, people with handicaps have a difficult time. Many people that have a handicap have a hard enough time getting people to accept who they are. It might be difficult for the family to finally understand to the full extent that the handicapped member should be treated the same as other members but with a little caution. From the start of Doodle’s life, his family failed to treat him the same as everyone else. “The doctor had said that he mustn’t get too excited, too hot, too cold, or too tired and that he must always be treated gently.
A long list of don’ts went with him, all of which I ignored once we got out of the house” (91). Doodle might have had disabilities but that does not mean that he should not be treated any different than anyone else. He tries so hard to be normal because his family makes him feel like he does not belong in their family. Especially his parents, they had a very pessimistic outlook on Doodle. No matter what the disability might be, everyone deserves to be treated in the same way. While people grow up, they learn right from wrong.
They learn how to treat a person as well as how they want to be treated. As Doodle is growing older, all he ever wants is to be treated normally. He would not be able to fulfill his life as everyone else, so he wanted to make the most out of it now. His family did not believe that he would live for long. This came to be because his father commissioned the building of a casket. Doodle’s real name was William Armstrong. The narrator describes the name as, “Which was like tying a big tail on a small kite, such a name sounds good only on a tombstone” (90).
It is obvious that Doodle’s parents had a very pessimistic outlook for their son. They seemed to be more concerned with his potential death than the possibility of him having a full life. Doodle kept trying day after day to gain respect from them. Families that have handicapped members should focus on the possible positive outcomes of life rather than the negatives because the pessimistic point of view only leads to the lowering of expectations and disrespect towards the family members. If you had a disabled family member that was disabled or handicapped, would you treat them the same or differently?
Where ever you may go in life you will always run into a handicapped person, whether they’re just an elder, or they are physically handicapped. You should treat them differently than you would usually treat others without handicaps because they are fragile, and incapable of some things that others might be able to do. Many people that have disabilities struggle throughout life. Doodle should be treated differently than others because he is fragile and the doctor’s said that anything might cause his little heart to stop.
He has not developed to the point where all the other kids his age are. Handicaps need more help because they are not able to do the things that people can do. If you have a family member with disabilities you should have more precautions around them. Many people with handicaps have been told that they have a limited amour of time to live or that they won’t be able to do the things that other people their age are able to do. They fight each day to achieve something that that might help them accomplish things in life no matter how hard it might be for them.