Nonviolent action and people with disabilities



Publication Details

Varney, W. A. & Martin, B. (2000). Nonviolent action and people with disabilities. Civilian-Based Defense, 15 (3), 4-16.

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Civilian-Based Defense


One of the often-noted advantages of nonviolent action is that it allows just about anyone to participate. Military troops, in contrast, mostly consist of young, physically fit men. Very few women, for example, engage in front-line combat. Civilian-based defense, the nonviolent alternative to military defense, uses lots of methods -- including rallies, strikes, boycotts and sit-ins -- that allow full-scale participation without regard to sex, age or ability. To be specific, that means that women, children, the elderly and people with disabilities or who are physically unfit can participate along with young fit men. The advantages of such participation include better representation of diverse needs and perspectives, greater opportunities for solidarity and potential for more shared knowledge.

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