Friday, August 23, 2013

Actually, What Will Michigan Ultimately Do?

This is Ultra DISTURBING News! That I just discovered upon logging into my NFB Newsline For The Blind account Thursday afternoon, (8/22) with the service's Headline Greeting proclaiming that the State of Michigan would be  ceasing Newsline service effective August 31st; WTF?

This is Chilling news to Mwah, especially as someone who not only uses the Washington State service multiple times daily, but just overall makes me sick since this is such an Essential Service to the multitudes of Michigonian's who rely upon this service daily... As I would simply ask Y'all what would you do if you suddenly lost your vision and COULD NOT READ ANYTHING! Or better yet, just for fun, try blindfolding yourself and then try reading your local newspaper!

And I know I'm not supposed to go all political on Yuhs, especially over something non-racing, but for Mwah the two are very much inexorably connected at the hip so to speak, since this is one of my main functions I utilize to keep abreast of what's going on around the world motorsports-wise, i.e.; just one of the many newspaper sections I follow daily is the IndyStar's Sports section.

So just what is Newsline for The Blind you might be asking? Well its a very slick service that allows blind & visually impaired people across the United States to simply call a specific telephone number that links them to a multitude of some 300 local, national and international newspapers & magazines that are read via synthesized computer speech, a la 'Lucy, my much ballyhooed Screen Reader voice that I listen to upon my 'Confuzer daily...

Thus I know that Michigan's ORIGINAL capitol city Detroit has filed for Bankruptcy, or is in the process - and I won't even get started upon the Republican Governor, legislature, etc, but the cancellation of Newsline for The Blind is simply UNACCEPTABLE!


As Gee Wally, guess what? I cannot find one single peep 'bout this  on thee A-L-L knowing Internetz, which isn't overly shocking, right? After all who cares about the blind? But it's pretty disturbing that when Mark Zuckerberg is currently pontificating for everybody to have access to Facebook; YUK! It seems quite appalling that once again a minority sector of America is being left in the dark literally! Thus I urge Y'all to get Michigan to reverse this Abysmal decision pronto! I mean if Zuckerberg thinks everybody should have unlimited access to his Facebook; Err internet, then what about the blind who DON'T have access to newspapers...

Zuckerberg wants everybody to have access

Good news for  Michigonian's was announced on August 28th regarding their local Newsline for The Blind Audio Newspaper reading services which were set to expire on August 31st. As the state's Bureau of Services for Blind Persons stepped up at the last moment and rescued the Essential Services for Blind & Visually Impaired persons - allowing NFB's Newsline for The Blind service to continue uninterrupted for the next six months!

And although this funding issue should  never have arisen in the first place, nor should it be further threatened on Feb 28, 2014, nevertheless, way to GO Bureau of Services for Blind Persons...