About two years ago, in 2013, a legally blind person, Albert Rizzi, and his guide dog, Dox, were ejected from a US Airways flight because Rizzi could not get Dox to crawl back under the seat in front of him. They had been on the tarmac for 45 minutes and the dog had become restless. In protest to Albert and Dox’s eviction, the 45 other passengers joined Rizzi and Dox in departing the plane and the flight was cancelled.
This Sunday, October 25th at 10:00 in the morning, Albert Rizzi will return to the Congregational Church of Patchogue, 95 East Main St. (Long Island, New York) to co-present the sermon with Rev. Dwight Lee Wolter. The sermon title is “Believing Is Seeing” and will address the similarities and differences between those who are unable to see and those who are unwilling.
Mr. Rizzi unexpectedly lost his sight in 2006. In 2009, he launched the non-profit My Blind Spot, which advocates that all individuals are entitled to acceptance as well as freedom from discrimination, regardless of their challenges in life, including LGBT persons such as Rizzi, and to develop and disseminate assistive technologies to visually impaired persons. My Blind Spot has been working with Intuit to develop an accessible version of the software giant’s popular QuickBooks accounting software in hopes that this will help reduce the national 75% unemployment rate among the blind. Mr. Rizzi’s previous co-presentation at the church was in 2011. His dog, Dox, has retired at home. Thus, Mr. Rizzi will be accompanied this time by his new guide dog, Vaughn, who will not be forced to squeeze himself under the pulpit chair.