MY RESPONSE: Teresa Blankmeyer Burke in Defense of Vinton Cerf

lookingI am excited to challenge the only Deaf-signing woman in the world that receives PhD in Philosophy. Her name is Teresa Blankmeyer Burke. She was there at the graduation held at Gallaudet University and admitted that Vinton Cerf did talk about technology, but did not “exhort everyone to get implanted.” I am surprised for someone like her holding the highest honors in Philosophy did not exactly read the lines very well. We cannot ignore the hate speech that is already proved scientifically or verified objectively. So, it is important to put a lot of investment in understanding hate speech. The tools we learn is very crucial for everyone with greater perspective about hate speech and bias, so we can forward with healing to pursue the higher truth and value of Deaf people, no matter what conclusions are. The mockery is gone. Long gone.

There are only two words that are people: survivors and hostages. How can Teresa dare to make personification out of civility, integrity, and truth without elaborating or describing them? Try to imagine who civility is, who integrity is, and who truth is. In Burke’s own words, “That is my observation as well after I watched the video. There is nothing in his presentation that gave any hint of exhortation to anyone. I see him as a technophile who is amazed by all the technologies that we currently have and is very excited to see what the future will bring. I copied two small portions of captions of his presentation that I think where some people misunderstood him. Approximately around 2:04:24: “Wearable computers and sensing devices on or embedded in our bodies will be standard practice some already are, such as the insulin pump, cochlear implant, and video cameras you can shallow.” Approximately around 2:04:58: “Stem cell and genetic therapies will almost become commonplace in your lifetimes and it is not inconceivable that we will be able to re-grow damaged parts of our bodies and that may include the reconstruction or organs that help us see or hear.” I could not find anything in his presentation that is even close to the exhortation. The burden is on those who made such claim to provide the accurate source of where he said that. My theory is that they were afraid of what the future would being (in the sense of technophobe, opposite of him) and saw his presentation through their own anti-cochlear implant lens that led to wildly inaccurate claim.”

WOW! WOW! Now I find Burke not as smart as I thought. I will copy several portions of captions of his presentation that I think where people did not see between the lines. Again, English language can be very tricky. My findings below:

  • “My wife, Sigrid Cerf received her first cochlear implant in 1996 and a second one ten years later. Now in 2015 you are about to graduate into a world that we can only begin to imagine. Notice the word right before this? ‘First cochlear implant…and second one ten years later….into a world that we can only begin to imagine. It means use your best imagination what to hear out there. ONLY WE CAN ONLY BEGIN….
  • “In my own field, it is reasonable to expect that quantum computers will become real. If not, necessarily in wide spread use. Minimally invasive surgery will be the norm for many conditions and nano-scale devices will be reduced to practice. Some may be autonomous and others guided by skillful hands or even by robots. Some will work inside our bodies. The key is “minimally invasive surgery will be the norm for many conditions.”—Many conditions means to wipe the condition of Deaf world. The second key is that “some will work inside our bodies” suggesting cochlear implant will work inside our ears. Is the ears part of the bodies? You decide.
  • “The Internet is becoming a reality and it will be the norm for you in your life time. Wearable computers and sensing devices will be standard practice some already are. Such as the insulin pump, cochlear implant, and video cameras you can shallow.” Cochlear implants are the reality that people need to shallow. Sensing devices are the part of encouraging getting cochlear implants.
  • “It is not inconceivable that we will able to re-grow damaged parts of our bodies and that may include the reconstruction of organs that help us see feel or hear.” It is easy to know what it means when someone says “re-grow damaged parts of our bodies”—re-grow ears are part of the bodies!
  • Some of you will discover new physical principles….” Hmmm. That is very tricky. Isn’t physical principle part of eradicating Deaf and learn to be hearing again? Deaf people have principles to protect their constitution rights.

From I had learned through my academic experience, it is best to stop any demonstrating troublesome and potentially harmful behaviors. When people practice any behavior, for example, hate speech, that behavior becomes stronger and harder to get rid of. In our human minds, we see a person of different culture walking past the street, and people sneer at them. They then become invariably disappears. To the human mind, the awareness works. To a slightly anxious people who did not take full responsibility to stop any kind of hate, and to a very anxious person like Alexander Graham Bell, Aristotle, Dimity Dornan, Karl White, William House, Vinton Cerf, many more, this completely reinforces the idea that hate speech makes scary things go away.

The goal is to teach people awareness that people should not be harmful and to substitute other behaviors, such as relaxing (at home), or paying attention to you. It is vital that you manage the environment to prevent this from happening. Do not allow people to spend time with haters unsupervised, where they can see outside, access the door, and criminalize at passersby. We would like to change people’s emotional reaction, as well as their behavior, when they seems different people on the walk. To do this, they must be comfortable—not making hate comments, literature, or speech that can constitute a hate crime. They will have to make judgment calls about which people they think they will react to, but err on the side of caution. We already know what they are more likely to react to people in hoods or carry backpacks.

That is my two cents. Share the truth! It is important to use your knowledge to recognize your civility and the truth wins with the most powerful integrity as possible. Philosophy holds the most noble thinker—try to read the lines better next time. Socrates, the most wisest thinker of all time would drink some red wine celebrating the civility, integrity, and truth that Deaf people do not need cochlear implants.


Copyright © Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.

10 thoughts on “MY RESPONSE: Teresa Blankmeyer Burke in Defense of Vinton Cerf

  1. It’s very, very, *very* misguided to call on people to stop others from expressing their views in mid-presentation as a routine practice. No way! That would only backfire. You would be drawing attention to the ideas that you don’t like. Please reconsider.

      1. So let me try to understand what you are saying. You are saying that you are entitled to shut down anyone’s presentation because you don’t like what they are saying, but they are not allowed to shut down yours?

  2. Even that JT wrote that Hurwitz should stop Cerf midway in his speech, that equals calling for him to shut up, JT was mainly criticizing what Cerf spoke, his words and what additional meanings one can glean from them. That is the main issue here. Cerf wanted to say, deafness is a malady for mankind and for every individual person, and we could and should not defend against it, because technology marches forward and is “unstoppable”. He seems to be subscribing to the ideology that humanity is perfect with hearing intact or better with superhearing (ability to hear beyond speech frequencies like a dog). He, as well as everyone of us – deaf or hearing -, must contemplate, whether it is good for mankind to consist of hearing people only. Believing this is to deny deaf people to exist as a matter of nature, or, for religious people, as part of God’s creation (Exodus 4:11).

    A piece of humanity vanishes when deaf people are exterminated. I wrote in a German publication about the CI (and other medical procedures) being the Final Solution to the Deaf-Mute Question.

    Surdo ergo sum.

    1. The state of being Deaf is a malady for humankind. Cerf would be a good example for Pavlov’s lab experiment. He does not have any remorse for Deaf humanity. Education generates awareness, no?

  3. Probably chose the commencement speaker just because he had a wife who used CI implants. That was why Catherine Murphy chose him to speak to mention that Gallaudet loves Audists and AUDISM.. Watch out, Gally may soon be AGBell University..

    1. It is all about propaganda what Alexander Graham Bell Association is doing to us, Deaf people—Gallaudet needs to wake up and realize what they had caused major shock. No apologies from them. Typical. Hate speech is the cousin of Audism. They love each other.

  4. Mr. Tozier,

    Can you please correct the misattribution in your post?

    I wrote the statements that you quoted starting with “That’s my observation as well …” and ending with “… that led to wildly inaccurate claim.”

    Dr. Teresa Blankmeyer Burke did not write them. It is dishonest to use ad homein on her based on misattribution of my statements to her.

    Please do the right thing and correct the misattribution.


    Joseph Pietro Riolo

    Public domain notice: I put all of my expressions in this post in the public domain.

    1. Mr. Riolo,

      STOP lying on the behalf of Teresa Blankmeyer Burke! The words she said coming from her OWN e-mail address and I do have the proof of it. I ask you to stop asking people attempting to leave a comment telling me that the words were yours.

      Now I was told that you and Burke have a thing for each other. I begin to know about you little more now. Interesting. You’re still colonized in the hearing world.

      Yes, again, for the last time, Teresa did write them!

      (Hi Teresa)


  5. JT said : We cannot ignore the hate speech that is already proved scientifically or verified objectively.

    There is no science and there is no objectivity. Like JT’s friend said, this is relativism in action. JT and his friends claim relativism on Cerfs part, but they mirror him with theirs.

    I gave you all the link on how difficult it is to prove hate crimes. I gave you an objective source that was ignored. The larger claim of audism is not entirely wrong, but in this thread JT is wasting time to harangue a PhD about what she saw and what she read.

    The problem JT and his crowd are missing is the recent DOE/HHS Policy Proposal on Inclusion, and there’s no hate speech, but it is full of the stuff people are protesting here. Cerf is one man. The DOE/HHS have domain over the freaking country.

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