Gallaudet University President Roberta “Bobbi” Cordano should resign.
#gallaudetuniversity #deafracism #blacklivesmatter #whitesupremacy
While visiting Washington, District of Columbia from Oregon, I remember watching: Gallaudet: The Film in 2010 with late Carl Schroeder, it was the very day before we visited Gallaudet University. I could not exactly understand the social phenomenon that time because I was not a student at Gallaudet University.
When we entered on the campus from Florida Ave NE by car, I still remember the feeling when I stepped my shoes on the Gallaudet soil, it was something I would never forget. It was the path where we walked that way entering into Sorenson Language and Communication Center (SLCC) to find Department of ASL/Deaf Studies.
The passage of second wave Oralism to legalize oppression of American Sign Language (ASL) has been showing both films: Gallaudet: The Film By Facundo Element and Our Deaf Community | Celebrating Gallaudet By Convo has sent a signal to embrace ASL and Deaf culture. The Pandora Box has warned all of us.
I saw the film premiere by Convo last October 2019;
What’s the deal between Facundo Element and Convo? Between Gallaudet University and Convo? What about Gallaudet University and Communication Service for the Deaf (CSD)? What is the difference between Communication Service for the Deaf and Sorenson Language and Communication Center (SLCC)?
As University budgets continue to be slashed, Deaf-centered philosophy for the award-winning Deaf space, anti-bias resources had been lacked, and that is the problem of the Gallaudet system. When you enter Gallaudet University as a student, you would be colonized, good or bad. Whether you want to challenge or be a bystander; I now understand the social phenomenon.
The mentality of Gallaudet. I became a student in graduate program on a full-ride scholarship in ASL/Deaf Studies in 2013; Even though the first time in 2010 when I saw Gallaudet: The Film, it has not inflicted me that time. Again, because I couldn’t understand that time. So, I had to watch that film again, and that is where it hit the lighting. Just like Ben Franklin using the kite to test and see if the lighting strikes the kite.
Can we learn ourselves of oppressive Gallaudet University by conversing the university anew to preserve and promote ASL and Deaf Culture? That is exactly what Carl taught me on the plane back home from the Deaf Community (DC) to Portland.
He explained: Gallaudophobia to describe of oppression at Gallaudet University and elsewhere. Of course, we are not experts in curing Gallaudophobia; do you think it is a serious phobia? Is it the culture of fear an outgoing problem: Gallaudet-style oppression? Let me give you few examples of phobias:
Eleutherophobia: fear of freedom
Mastigophobia: fear of punishment
Epistemiphobia: fear of knowledge
Let’s turn our thoughts to the oppression. It strikes me that the program of Gallaudet University is more ideological more than phenomenal rather than generosity. Its ambition is to weaken or destroy ASL and Deaf Culture.
The Deaf space is the hottest market where Deaf scholars are treated with honour. Imagine Board of Trustees (BoT) who sits together in order to share wisdom and advice with the Gallaudet campus. Imagine going to this Board the moment you first recognize your own language there. Imagine sharing your concerns with the Board, the Deaf members like yourself who listen to you with respect. Imagine how you would feel about yourself if you could call on this Board’s guidance when you need it.
Wake up! Do we really have this kind of imagination at Gallaudet University today? Do we understand that the Board of Trustees is powerful? Have they failed to live within the goals now?
Hansel Bauman, the leading-architect for the Deaf Space at Gallaudet University, as I learned later that Janet Pray would typically say that sign language users are an “increasingly small” percentage of the deaf population.
In 2006, from GallyNet-L where a comment by Deep Eyes wrote:
“king and jk plan to meet with washington post editorial board this
afternoon. they will try to manipulate public info & perception. make
sure deaf people get correct info to the media
let world know that board voted 7-5 initially – 7 votes for jk and 5
votes for steve weiner. king then came into the picture…. manipulated
boardies like puppets and get ’em to go 12-0 for jk. illegal? No! But it
stinks!! king is now a fair game
look at king’s compensation package and perks. very similar to the mess
at american university which actually forced him to retire
DPN in 1988 belongs to all deaf people, not to king. remember that cuz
king and his people forget that”
About SLCC, there was a committee of university constituents (approx. 2002) who were discussing plans for the new building and the committee decided that the name should include the word “culture” as in “Sorenson Language and Cultural Center”–however, Irving King Jordan, Janet Fernandes, and Janet Pray ignored that and changed it to “Sorenson Language and Communication Center.” Some people think that when Janet Pray typed the minutes for the committee meetings that she sneakily changed what the committee decided.
Brian Riley wrote in February 2007: “Breaking News–Web page for SLCC taken off Gallaudet.edu”:
“According to one reliable report, Gallaudet’s Faculty and students (in committee) had originally objected to the plan to use the word “Communication” in the name of the building and favored the word “Cultural” instead. However, the wishes of the faculty and the students were ignored. The decision was made by Paul Kelly, Irving Jordan King, Jane Fernandes, and Catherine Sweet-Windham to bypass the committee’s decision. They overrode the decision and took their illegitimate decision (to use the word “Communication”) to the Board for approval.
Question have also raised about the legality of the contract between Sorenson and Gallaudet. The contract reportedly gives away patent rights to Sorenson for any new inventions or innovations created in the planned building. Such an ill-conceived contract is probably not legal, since Gallaudet is registered as a 501 (c)(3) with the Federal Government and is required to reinvest all profits from campus activities and ventures back into the non-profit corporation of Gallaudet itself.”
In its place comes a sort of biblical oppression that would be in Christian name, EPHPHATHA. Through this Christian word on the official university seal, there would be no freedom of expression, no freedom of religion, no independent academic disciplines, and no place for scientific progress. In short, it would be our worst nightmare.
1) Home again at Gallaudet University;
2) The acceptance of ASL in the academy;
3) The nature and persistence of the linguistic research;
4) The power of ASL to influence and shape the human mind;
5) The character of faculty as it shapes intellectual life of the Deaf;
Is Gallaudet University a place of safety, where ASL becomes the focus? Is ASL home or fading?
The understanding of an economic system that oppress ASL and Deaf people be replaced with a system that meets the needs of the Audism. To that end, ASL pays tribute to Deaf people. It is the voice of thousands and thousands of everyday Deaf people who are fighting to preserve ASL and Deaf culture in crisis.
14 years ago. October 31, 2006. Washington Post editorial: Gallaudet Loss. Don’t we all remember that Post article or have we forgotten it? We need to review that again and again.
Despite more aggressive and often dishonest tactics, Gallaudet University public relations are encountering resistance on campus, not only students, but also faculty, staff, and alumni.
That leads to a newspaper letter, The Examiner written technically a letter to the editor by once again, Brian Riley in 2006: Protestors are trying to save Gallaudet University for the future has proved social problems today.
What happened to Gallaudet University unique because it is where ASL is best used comparing between 1988 and 2020? There are so many areas of scholarship in Gallaudet University that cry for betterment, and we need more insightful leaders to create a Deaf-centered path for all of us to be hungry for.
The film differences between Facundo Element and Convo is something we need to do serious critical thinking how to save Gallaudet University for the future. One of the more powerful films we need to stumble upon block of stone that sits on the “sacred ground of the Deaf” in Washington, D.C., the problem is that it is still struggling to be as Deaf-centered University.
Copyright © 2020 Jason Tozier
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With Betsy DeVos confirmed as secretary for Department of Education today, the majority of Republicans who voted for DeVos are really stupider than stupid. Gallaudet University is under the watch of Department of Education. All the employees and students might possibly face the changes in the future. Can students stage a walkout or engage in other forms of protest at Gallaudet? Yes, they can express their own political opinions peacefully. The students should not be attacked because they are entitled to have educational rights–as in human rights.
An educational right is a superb condition because higher learning has evolved through times of oppression and opportunity. Gallaudet University was supposed to be about intellectual life of Deaf people since 1864. We all remember about 1988 and 2006 protest at Gallaudet that we shall trust tomorrow and as for today, we need to remember that there is always a room for making new meanings, it is very important to remember that! 1988 Deaf President Now (DPN) was all about civil movement.
Betsy DeVos is totally unaware of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act [IDEA] and Americans with Disabilities Act [ADA] that raises a huge problem even at Gallaudet University. She is all about–simple and obvious: divide and conquer. She is now the spokesperson to destroy the educational life of Deaf people’s intellectual life. None of her educational leadership shows a great deal of damages. Deaf people will be suffering from not getting enough educational rights. After all, that is why ADA was one of many reasons created in 1990 because of DPN.
After seeing all the Republicans who voted for DeVos, one senator has surprised me–John McCain from Arizona. He was on the Board of Trustees (BoT) at Gallaudet University. He was supposed to be fierce leader in supporting education and…Higher learning for Deaf students. Apparently, it looks like it not anymore now. Is this why he resigned from BoT because of 2006 protest that he could not handle the truth? Senator McCain took $50,000 donation from Betsy DeVos was all about money—he does not care about people but money.
In next few years, the Department of Education–the ability to make even more difficult for future students to tell stories about it emotionally that will pass on to other generation of future students at Gallaudet. It is very much an emotional memory as much as anything else. I’m really surprised that Senator McCain would not join the resistance and block Betsy DeVos to run the department. What a shame!
What kind of power dynamics of education means to you? Why do you think education is important today and tomorrow? What are your reasons to embrace education for everyone’s sake? What is the present situation about the future education at Gallaudet University? What are the concerns of not getting enough education?
Copyright @ 2017 Jason Tozier
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I found that Vinton Cerf’s presentation during the 2015 commencement did not have any place on academy at all. He encouraged Deaf people to get cochlear implants on their most important day of their lives: graduation! It is the biggest insult to their pursuit of happiness. What is more that Alan Hurwitz smiled right back at him and told him a big THANK YOU.
I am deeply concerned with the resurgence of allowing eugenics on the graduation day with Cerf’s alliance with political-ideological movements to block ASL in education. Gallaudet University has continued toward to developing a program for the eradication and oppression of ASL, the language and culture of the Deaf by promoting more speculative communicative pursuits.
There was really no excuse for Vinton Cerf’s unprofessional behavior–a travesty of social injustice. Gallaudet University should not be the community that turns Deaf people into puppets by TELLING them to get cochlear implants–the greatest mocking treatment of Deaf people!
I am getting really tired sick of the amount of language bigotry and hate speech anymore! The question you ask yourself, what are the dangers of allowing Vinton Cerf to speak eugenics-style presentation in 2015? As I was taught that Gallaudet University was supposed to be the voyage and movement. It’s sad because no one has stopped his speech and allowed him to practice hate speech—Gallaudet University is supposed to defend ASL fiercely.
There were couple of Deaf graduates graduating with honor and respect; yet, the kind of imagination at Gallaudet University is that Mr. Cerf makes sure that Deaf people forget that they are Deaf. Just like AGB’s philosophy in 1884. “We should try ourselves to forget that they are deaf. We should try to teach them that they are deaf.” Since Vinton Cerf is the father of Internet, let’s stamp him as the father of Hate Speech eradicating Deaf graduates today. It is a sad day!
Copyright © 2015 Jason Tozier
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Today, November 19, 2014—there was a final live-stream about Presidential Search Advisory Committee with three questions: 1) what do you see as the challenges facing the next president? 2) What previous experience would best prepare someone for this role? 3) What do we want to do as a community to help ensure that the next president will be successful in leading Gallaudet University? The current president will be remembered as incumbent president how he handles crisis at GU. For example, budget, lack of accountability: stakeholders, “over-privileged” public figures. I remember meeting him for the first time in Portland, Oregon back in June 2010 at Deaf People of Color Conference. He set his foot in Portland, the home of rich heritage of radical social dissent “radicalism”—big mistake. My home.
He did not really involved much in that conference. I applaud those people who shared their concerns on the stage—but there are few concerns that I would like to share my own opinion. Civil disobedience is an important part to get their attention. The question, how can concerned people convince them that it can be done without a lot of money since GU is “secretly” slashing the budget right and left and student-centered are having difficult time getting their answers from the administration. The current president is becoming richer each day. I am very strong supporter of student-centered philosophy to promote the success of students prior to and at GU. The third question above, the next president should be involved with supporting students academically, students organizations, developing better relationships with students for retention, articulating-facilitating course proposals through curriculum committees (there are hypocrites who are in Senate Faculty), supporting an academic degree program, and participating in faculty and staff meetings.
Promote more breath in teaching by keeping up in professional development and it is part of new blood. The current president does not have professional experiences makes the prospective students realize the paramount importance of supporting academically with diverse difficulties, whether Deaf, minority, learning disabled and other issues has been ignored at times. It is important to have the next president represent the cultural differences and diversity faced by the students at GU that needs to be highly conscious of how it operates by comparing and appreciating their differences.
In my opinion, diversity in higher education enhances economic competitiveness, promotes a healthy society, and strengthens the community of higher learning and teaching. It is also important to expand the educational leadership in reaching out and make a conscious effort to build healthy and diverse learning environments appropriate for GU’s mission. The strength of students’ democracy depends on it. GU is a well-known reference to the attitude of honest acceptance for which student-centered philosophy has been neglected. It is a place where the “high-ranking” administration officials refers to a powerful way to resolve any problem, accomplish any goal, and to achieve any state of mind or body that affects all the Deaf students. Not only with the search for the next president, but there is a large need for the new blood: President’s Cabinet.
Many people had expressed their frustrations about the current President’s Cabinet also known as the administration. It is high time for Paul Kelly; the invisible moneyman on the campus has to go. Dwight Benedict must go as well, too. The President’s Cabinet does not have leadership power for attaining true health, happiness, prosperity, and success at Gallaudet. They have destroyed many Deaf people in the past to benefit not only themselves, but also the biggest moneymakers: Hurwitz and Kelly. GU is for students, their own academy. Since the educational process there is essentially social—particularly in its early stages when it involves at least a president and a student—it is clear that the student, especially if he or she is to cope with college education, must have minimal mastery of the social skills necessary for engaging in future higher learning.
Willard Wilson wrote in 1932: “Schools have a culture that is definitely their own. There are, in school, complex ritual of personal relationships, a set of folkways, mores, and irrational sanctions, a moral code based upon them.” GU is not a world of its own. It is not even a world, but because GU is in the world, because it is affected by situations, and because it orients itself comprehensively in those situations, GU has something—counseling, tutoring, academic advising, and the like—to serve and help students to change and grow socially as well as academically. Kelly manages the financial affairs of GU. It is important to know that business services need to provide for accurate and timely information to both their future population (regarding student accounts) and to GU’s financial matters.
I believe that GU’s new president cabinet and the next president should provide support to auxiliary areas of the university, including, but not limited to, the Board of Trustees, the Budget Committee, and the University Educational Programs. The students, with the first question above, should be all served that receive professional and competent student service and will feel confident that they have done everything possible to address their needs. They will preserve the assets of GU in order to ensure change and growth to happen for future generations. With second question, “what previous experience would best prepare someone for this role?” The current president never became instrumental in shaping students’ wits that permeate the “culture” of GU, for example, Gallaudet’s first name; University is the last name. Whether students are taught with basic sense of self-efficacy, they need to be motivated about higher education.
Also, they have a capacity for producing a desired effect are generally more psychologically prepared than are students who are limited to “sitting at desks studying mostly useless textbooks” Again, the current president and its cabinet never recognize that the diversity of higher learning and teaching styles among students and faculty, and I believe in providing a variety of strategies—evaluations, trainings, workshops, in-services and so forth—for GU to create a “culture” that changes the student and help them grow. Finally, the next president should provide his or her leadership to find ways to utilize the difference in a democratic atmosphere that foster cooperation than the competition and to compliment and collaborate with students. The next president should welcome the opportunity to interview his or her thoughts and ideas as stepwise arguments for students’ contemplation at length, at leisure, and at liberty.
All in all, I believe that the next president candidate for this position, a leader, who inspires, applauds, steers, and stands on the side. Yes, sometimes, they will stand in front, too, to focus on diversity, to encourage university-“ibity” and to help create a setting in which each student can change and everyone can grow. Students can all that they can to ensure that GU is a university-community where higher learning happens for change and higher teaching promotes growth with the next Deaf president. I prefer the next Deaf president should be Black Woman. Radicalism is good for a change! The new blood starts with next president and the entire President’s Cabinet.
Who wants to scuffle cards?
Copyright © Jason Tozier
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CC: Board of Trustees: Duane Halliburton, Chair, PSAC, Claire Bugen, Vice Chair, PSAC, Nancy Kelly-Jones, Dick Kinney, Jorge Diaz-Herrera, Tiffany Williams Student Body Government: Andrew Morrill Graduate Student Association: Michael Awbrey Faculty: Teresa Blankmeyer Burke, Dennis Galvan, Christina Yuknis, Kubby Rashid Staff: Glenn Lockhart, representing Clerc Center, Nicholas Gould, Elvis Guillermo Alumni Association: Deborah DeStefano