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Dear Humane Healthcare,

          I liked the article, “THE FAIR'S DWARF AND THE CIRCUS'S MIDGET AS SOCIETY'S MIRROR” and thought it is very apropos. I know the truth of this line, “It is common to relate to these children according to wrongly perceived height-adjusted age, and so treat them according to their age of appearance rather than to their real age.” I have ‘preached’ the gospel of this for a number of years. It persists through adulthood.
          Why does society like to project all it’s faults onto Midgets? I never associated this solely with my height, (I first thought it was a game of intellectual turnabout) yet I keep experiencing this thing over and over.  Shorter people are responsible for whatever goes wrong. Perhaps we are perceived as the jinx, or wicked fairy or troll. Perhaps there were more deep seated society stereotypes than I had realized. Since it exists within my family, I discounted it as simply a height issue because my family has mixed height individuals [average height, short and midget persons (no dwarves though)].  Also, it is very true about the outsmarting “the midget always appeared as the smarter character who used his small size to outwit the "foolish" (in the public's eye) characters.” Though my intellect may be acknowledged (which I am not out to prove) there is still the sense that people are expecting less, intellectually, lower whit or worldly knowledge. There seems to be the expectation that a naïve nature is innately part of the lack of height. I am often treated according to my height and youthful features although my comportment decries my physical appearance.
          How often have I experienced anger and outright indignation when people find out I would not accept the big brother routine or the superior brain attitude by virtue of their height—or the dotage that is age and situation inappropriate--the over familiarity and overstepping of boundaries. It simply does not work in business. When they find out you are not less then they, the reaction is as though having been duped. When you refuse to play the short and cute role, people don’t like it.
          Dreadlocks (what appear to be) solved this problem. I look more my age and somehow people associate them with a sort of awareness, when they are not assumed evident of a hippie mentality or political statement. For me it was practical wash and wear hair maintenance.  
          I try to be understanding and patient, as it is only natural some would be
curious. We must not take our curiosity beyond the humane as my life is not
for the entertainment of others. 
          As for the workforce, I am self employed but only sometimes attributed the inequities as height related. But once an employer did tell me that short people have to work harder than others. He did require more work of me.
          Thank you for the article. I know of a physician I worked with in public health, who runs a research oriented non profit, yet is out of touch with the issues raised on your website. Although working to raise awareness (as a contractor with the public health department) he is very bereft.  Perhaps some day he will be enlightened this article and your website.  
          What can do when I encounter similar persons? What can I do in my community?
          I’ve been wanting to start a non-profit for some time. This seems like a good focus.

Bridget Reynolds