Commentary by Steven Goldsmith, December 2004

During the holiday seasons we see many dwarf men and women actors. They are usually playing Santa's elves. In other seasons they appear as fairies, leprechauns, aliens and other beings not normally seen in the real world.

T-Mobile has a new television commercial campaign showing a little person as - get this - a human being. We are encouraged. The commercial has one famous rap artist using his wireless mobile device to contact a friend with a routine question. The first person contacted doesn't know the answer so he contacts another who asks another down a line of celebrities and semi-celebrities. One of the links in this chain is a dwarf man. Other than his height, there is nothing special about him. He does not fit the negative stereotypes for short people. He is simply one link in a chain of people helping a friend and having a good time about it. In the most recent episode, instead of stepping into a costume, he's being fitted for a tuxedo. This is probably a prelude to the next episode.

Thank you T-Mobile for your radical, sensible portrayal of a short person. In the same year that major companies like General Mills, Burger King and McDonalds are saying that short men are unworthy of regular human relationships, it is nice to see T-Mobile striking a blow for normalcy for those who happen to be short.

There is one caveat in all this. The man selected to play the dwarf is Jason Acuņa who appeared in the Jackass television series and movie as man with the unenviable ability to kick himself in the head. Another choice might have been better. We'll just have to see where all this leads.