Having mentioned safe spaces at University in a previous post, this request at a conference to stop clapping is a good example. Restrain your cultural inclination to show approval and appreciation for speakers, because some cannot cope with the noise of clapping.
Sensory overload is something which I have to look out for when caring for my brother. New born babies crying – in fact just seeing a baby – would make my brother want to leave a room. He cannot cope with the possibility of the noise.
The idea that I would request everyone in a cafe to be quiet, especially young ones, so my brother could enjoy himself in the premises would be taking the piss. If it is too crowded, or a baby is present, we let him see, then he chooses to go back out. No fuss, no bother. Coffee can always be enjoyed somewhere.
Return to the conference. For whatever reason, there are people who cannot cope with the noise of clapping. They ask everyone to provide a safe space for them. Thing is, clapping is something that happens at conferences. You have to plan for that.
Here is how the request went down.
A related note which I have been told today by one of my brother’s support workers. A local church allows a local school to perform the nativity play. However, the vicar solemnly reminded those congregated that this was a House of God where no clapping should ever take place. Children were said to be crest fallen at this invocation of divine etiquette.
Needless to say, some parents clapped the more for this to make up for the majority which agreed to acquiescent to this demand.
It is a strange world we live in. I appreciate some people have issues with how we show our appreciation. For those that say their culture prohibits you doing this anywhere, well mine encourages it.
If you’re happy and you know it, and you really want to show it …
Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog