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Zach Anner & the Quest for the Rainbow Bagel

Zach Anner is a YouTube personality and disability rights activist with cerebral palsy. In this video published in 2017 by the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, Anner goes from his hotel in Manhattan to The Bagel Store in Brooklyn to get a rainbow colored bagel. It takes Anner an hour to go downstairs from his room because all the elevators are full and no one will get off for him. He ends up having to crawl down a short flight of stairs to get to the other elevator. He has trouble finding the wheelchair accessible entrance to the subway, gets stuck on an “accessible” curb that is too steep, and has to take a ferry to Brooklyn because there is no wheel chair accessible subway. When he finally gets to The Bagel Store, he can’t go inside because it isn’t wheelchair accessible, so an employee has to come outside to take his order. It ends up taking him 8 hours. At the end of the video Anner tells us that New York is actually one of the most accessible cities in the United States, and he asks the viewer to donate to the Cerebral Palsy Foundation.

discussion

What are Anner’s goals in this video?

What challenges does Anner face on the way to The Bagel Store?

If New York is one of the most accessible cities in the United States, what does that tell us about other cities? What does it suggest about how our society takes into consideration people with physical disabilities?

What could be changed to make Anner’s trip to The Bagel Store easier and faster?

Do you think this video is an effective way to address this problem and call for change?