I read this article and wanted to share it with y'all. I agree, our exposure to the Hearing World exploded with Social Media, but I admit we do have a long way to go to eradicate stereotypes.
So, what do you think? Did it help or do we still have a long way to go? Let's start a discussion in comments.
I was sent this post from the Complete Communication Blog & I want to share it with you:
Why I Will Never Stop Fighting for Language Equality
When you continually fight for a cause (or multiple causes), it can be easy to get discouraged when you see what you perceive as a lack of progress. In this post, I'm going to focus on the cause of language equality. Specifically, that all Deaf children are given full access to ASL (or the sign language of their country) as their first language from birth.
Full access to ASL from birth only happens for 1 out of every 4 Deaf children. Getting language access to those other 3 out of 4 children can seem like such an insurmountable goal.
There are doctors telling scared parents that their only option is for their child to use hearing aids or a cochlear implant and learn to lipread and speak. There are parents that become obsessed with the idea that they must "fix" or "normalize" their Deaf child. There are even entire organizations *cough* Alexander Graham Bell *cough* that are committed to denying the devastating effects of language deprivation.
Access to ASL for deaf children just makes sense. While some children may learn to speak as well, they will still never be able to fully access spoken English. How can giving someone a partial language set them up for success later in life?
So, we have to be even more committed than the forces working against us. Even more committed to continually educating ourselves. Even more committed to raising awareness. Even more committed to donating our time and/or money to organizations that promote language access. How do we stay committed? How do we keep fighting every day for what we know is right?
I was watching a few videos the other day of Deaf babies communicating in or being exposed to ASL. Little hands get me every time. I felt warm and fuzzy. When I see those types of videos or read those types of stories I know that that is the way it should be. It reminds me what I'm fighting for.
The day I stop fighting will be either:
Now, I'll share a couple of my favorite videos with you. There are plenty more as well, so feel free to search away!
This video of sweet, 22 month old Ayla is one of my favorites! This is what I'm fighting for! This is what all Deaf children deserve! There's also other videos in this series of Deaf babies signing ASL that are equally as heartwarming and fabulous.
And then we have this video of a Deaf grandmother teaching her Deaf granddaughter ASL. How sweet is THAT? This grandmother is passing on her language and culture to her granddaughter and it's beautiful.
If you would like to read more of her blog, head over to Complete Communication.
If you want to know more about ASL - contact me!
I was sent this post by a reader and have gained permission to share it.
It was posted on ZooMax.co
I hope you enjoyed this article and have a great week!
I saw an article a friend shared on Facebook:
"Nyle DiMarco’s Activism Is Dangerous For The Deaf Community"
This author is deaf in a hearing family and was mainstreamed in public school and can speak "the predominant language of this country". Well y'all know that's my upbringing too, I'm the only deaf (or deafblind if you want to get specific) in my family, I grew up oral and mainstreamed and didn't learn ASL until I was 12 years old. (You can read my Letter to Parents of Deaf Children for more details.)
This article irked me in so many ways...
Let me break it down into bits to respond to:
Someone who only uses ASL, like Nyle, can’t interact with society without help from others.
Whoa! Really? Are we that dysfunctional? There are other means of communication, pen and paper, texting, snapping a picture of the menu and showing the server, and so on and on. I know plenty of Deaf people who use ASL that can speak, but prefer not to.
I’m reminded of my deafness every second of every day.
Really? Because I don't give my Deafness a second thought. Like you said, "my deafness is one part of who I am", my deafblindness is a part of who I am, but I don't dwell on it and I'm not "reminded" of it. Sure I struggle to understand and lipread or interact with the hearing world, but I don't go "oh gee I'm deaf", "it's so hard being deaf", or "I wish I was hearing".
Deaf Culture extremists will respond to this essay in full force; they’re well-known for their intimidation and manipulation tactics
I could say the same for the Alexander Graham Bell Foundation and it's members, which by the way, Ms. Goldstein is a Board Member of AGB. So I can pretty much state her views are biased and in support of her organization. I've heard countless stories of intimidation and manipulation by AGB on Deaf families and individuals and they're not open-minded as they state they are. (Again read my Letter for more details).
We're deaf in different ways, and that should be Ok
Yes we are, there's the deaf (small d) and the Deaf (Capital D). Oral deaf vs. ASL Deaf. We've been at odds for a very long time and probably won't end any time soon.
Yet Ms. Goldstein doesn't want to celebrate the Deaf difference and instead belittle Nyle's accomplishment, just like her organization AGB has done all along.
Yet, despite him saying he wants to use his celebrity for good, he’s dividing instead of bridging
Have you not seen the celebrations around the world? The Deaf community and even the deaf community (those not part of AGB mind you) have been cheering for Nyle for a long time now.
We, Deaf, will not hide in the shadows anymore and are proud, damn proud of Nyle DiMarco. We are showing the general public (aka the hearing world), that the Deaf can do whatever we want!
Do you have a Deaf patient at your medical office or hospital?
Need to know how to help them?
Need to understand their communication needs?
Wonder why they're reluctant, frustrated, skipping appointments?
Read all about it in this article.
Feel free to share this article with everyone.
"One finds limits by pushing them" ~ Herbert Simon
Saw this post today and it's what I've been trying to say all along! Just because you threw on a blindfold or plugged up your ears you "know" what's it like to be Blind or Deaf? Have y'all forgotten about adaptive equipment & tools we use to accommodate? Sure it looks like a hard life when you don't have a cane or visual alert flasher!
This study states "...after simulating blindness by having their eyes covered, participants believed people who are blind are less capable of work and independent living than did participants who simulated other impairments like amputation, or had no impairment." Well, WHAT did you use to accommodate the "blindness"? Were they trained in Orientation & Mobility (O&M), did they have equipment? Or were they just blindfolded and shoved into a room?
I agree with the author that "“A lot of the disability that I experience has nothing to do with not being able to see,” said Silverman. “Instead, it’s because I can’t access something like a poorly designed website, for example." The true disability isn't our blindness or deafness, but accessibility and attitudes towards us!
"Simulated sightlessness can harm People's Attitudes towards Blindness"I
Mainly this study showed the self-centered nature on how people perceive others with disabilities. Yeah the all too common "I could never...", well we didn't ask for it ourselves!! So shut the hell up and be more considerate and less condescending!
I understand the need for simulations for training teachers and professionals, but we need better simulations that includes equpment, accessibility and attitudes. Why not include the disabled people themselves? Wouldn't it be a better teaching tool to interview and shadow a disabled person for a while? See how they do day to day and see where the true hurdles are and then work on those hurdles (such as better access to websites, movie theaters, or communication tactics).
So instead of slapping on a blindfold and fumbling about, or plugging your ears and straining to hear, reach out to someone with a disability and ask, "what's it like for you?"
One finds limits by pushing them" ~ Herbert Simon