Powell’s Bookstore: Restoring Democracy for Deaf Community

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I am proud Deaf person right now. I feel good. I made a difference. Earlier this week, I received e-mail from Powell’s bookstore. Doing good thing that makes all the difference is taking leadership role in every aspect of the Deaf community that captures the depth and diversity of the Deaf people.

Powell’s bookstore in Portland, Oregon is the largest independent bookstore in the world, which happened to be my most favorite place anywhere. My life would not be the same without books. Powell’s bookstore has a unique energy, bringing symbolism to the minds of book readers.

When I was living in Portland, I would take my radically crafted bicycle to Powell’s bookstore in all angles of  greater Portland, to appreciate the journey as a bibliophile “book lover”—has taught me plenty of knowledge, and I am thankful forever.

The classic 1971 Schwinn bicycle I bought in 2007 for $5.00 and fixed up by myself was fun part.

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Recently, I noticed something on the website that caught my attention that I decided to get in touch with Powell’s bookstore and make a positive contribution for the Deaf community. It is important to recognize something that is not appropriate or controversial, take a bold step and make the difference. A controversy over defining Deaf people needs to be questioned of what is and is not a negative symbol back into the public eye.

Is a term of “hearing-impaired” a human-whistle symbol for deficit thinking? Why is ‘hearing impaired’ acceptable for years and years? Is it time to make a radical change?

See the picture below:

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Then I had to write an e-mail to Powell’s bookstore to clarify it up. “The friendliest and most reassuring human beings on the planet…”…..”Our hearing-imparied customers.” It was much needed to do the civic duty to have “hearing impaired” removed and use “Deaf” customers instead. That’s where I shared the link:

http://www.wtdp.org/deafyes/

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Should Powell’s bookstore follow a good example of leadership of WTDP? Yes, Deaf people are also most reassuring human beings on the planet. Deaf people are human beings. With the term “hearing impaired”–they are subjected to “human doings” instead of human beings.

However, I had to make another step to educate about “Deaf” with upper “D” instead of “deaf” with lower “d” should be culturally appreciated with love. It is not just about “grammar rules”—Learning how to take a radical step within the advocacy efforts to make all the difference feels good! And they listened with big and open heart. See the big change?

 

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Powell’s bookstore is a better place that distributes healthy journey for Deaf customers, and engages in human appreciation, outreach, and education. Deaf customers around the world are part of human right. Around the world? Yes, remember “largest independent bookstore in the world”?

That’s the image of Powell’s bookstore today. That is the reason I had a vintage world globe antique–rotating Earth gift from Aunt Sally sitting on my bookshelf–you can find second picture above of this page. Next to the globe was my favorite chessboard.

The labeling of Deaf people as “hearing impaired”—the dilemma is that far more denial than the society admit that the human right violation of defining who Deaf people are. It is time that the society continues to violate human rights for Deaf people is protested and challenged. Simply, the view of Deaf people as “hearing impaired” is often lead to culture of ignorance, denial, and misinformed. Chessboard: Checkmate.

Most importantly, the culture of stigma is taught by prejudices against the image of Deaf people in society. Powell’s bookstore listened with open mind and big heart. Deaf people are being in the process of growing on account of acceptance. That makes the largest independent bookstore in the world an unique place.

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Powell’s Bookstore: Selling books before moving to D.C.

After explaining about video relay service (VRS) that today’s majority of Deaf customers use through VRS is important because without video relay service which means rejection of American Sign Language (ASL) is immediately vulnerable and is much needed to defend life of ASL.

This sentiment and desire for ASL is a special place. After all, we need to take back ASL. To put an end on the negative labeling of Deaf people as “hearing impaired”–we need to take back the Deaf community to preserve our positive identity, we need to take back the Deaf community after all. That is the quest vision.

-JT

Copyright © 2019 Jason Tozier

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

 

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