How the Coronavirus pandemic is reshaping the mental health in the Deaf community. Important to focus on “reshaping” and understand. May is Mental Health Awareness Month.
American Sign Language (ASL) is the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. Rights are important. Why? ASL is the form of ‘speech’ of the Deaf. Communication, information, and knowledge by accessing to ASL in counseling. That is your right. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
When the COVID-19 crisis affects Deaf people’s well-being, mental health–they would seek Deaf-centered counseling. The quality of Deaf counseling is the greatest tool to decompress any kind of stress. The gain of the mental health reminds of Paddy Ladd, the Deaf author, Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood, writes:
“It has become clear, too, that the rapid growth of this contact, combined with the quality rapid growth in unexamined use of the Deaf culture concept, has created a situation in which Deaf cultural research is needed as a matter of maximum urgency.”
Deaf-centered counseling is truly a dedication, they are the front line helpers. Many solutions can help Deaf citizens to feel stress-free. When counseling is being deprived of this pandemic, in a hearing world, where Deaf people often fall under a wrong agenda, struggling with language deprivation.
The mental health awareness in the human welfare of the Deaf, seek for better guidance through Deaf-centered counseling to provide resources, should not be simply a struggle of the human mind, body, and spirit.
Mental health awareness also should not be a struck in human struggle, but to serve the public awareness as possible for the Deaf community to have a valid reason why Deaf-centered counseling on the front lines of this pandemic is forever in debt to provide every Deaf person.
-Jason “JT” Tozier
Why is ASL still marginalized today and tomorrow? Deprivation of ASL is a form of Linguicism?
Gallaudet University still have relationship with Alexander Graham Bell, a historical figure who owned Audist views or engaged in hate practices—his name have not been removed across on the campus of Gallaudet. The coat of arms by the name of Bell have been idolized a landscape symbol of Audism that honors AGBell that leads to a question:
Is it obvious that GUAA had cited any sentiments in Ella Mae Lentz’s work because of her views about AGBell and LEAD-K? The videos between October 2018 and March 2019 by Ella Mae Lentz should not be censored due to her “tone”–“tone” is part of ASL, too. Is there a reason to cite its decision by GUAA to take an award away with “very careful assessment”, the highest social justice award known as Galloway award, reserved for Ella who have made a lasting contribution to Deaf community?
“Tone” is also an amendment to the United States Constitution: First Amendment. Freedom of Speech. Freedom of Expression. It means any law that should not prohibited limiting Ella’s rights to the First Amendment. Did it mean Gallaudet University and GUAA violated Ella’s rights even if it is because of “tone” in her videos where it belongs at her own house in California? It is an United States Constitution violation. It is indeed, very serious.
Ella Mae Lentz is very much entitled to her linguistic expressions to share her own thoughts in ASL, yet, GUAA is a hell-bent on allowing censorship being shifted control to limit her own expression, so ASL can be sold or censored to the highest bidder.
If there are at least, three people on the GUAA board whom have significant stakeholders of LEAD-K, making the decision independently, would cite a huge role in favoritism, and then it is a problem. It spells out a well-planned effort to penetrate the Audism market, while being stakeholders of LEAD-K, then it is also a stakeholder as the behalf of GUAA to avoid being “controversial” and generate modes of communication to deliberately confound the Deaf.
Ella Mae Lentz’s lasting contributions that stands up against AGBell to stop widespread linguistic and cultural anxieties in Deaf America is a feat.
GUAA board decides it would be best to rescind the Galloway award, so to avoid the permanent fear of ASL-centered, for political reasons, there is a huge banner that says: “WE ARE GALLAUDET: A SIGNING COMMUNITY”
Why not “WE ARE GALLAUDET: ASL COMMUNITY?”
GALLAUDET: SIGNING COMMUNITY is all about promoting more speculative communicative pursuits—oppressing ASL, the language and culture of the Deaf. Is it good example of marginalization of ASL? Is it censorship at best?
GALLAUDET: ASL COMMUNITY is about healthy lifestyle, living by the values it teaches and to reflect ASL everywhere. Students, faculty, and the campus would benefit the profession of ASL as scholars and teachers depends on the First Amendment rights that ASL COMMUNITY belongs on Gallaudet campus.
Ella Mae Lentz, a defender of ASL rights, shall receive Galloway social justice award without retaliation. Her views of LEAD-K and AGBell should not be censored, with a direct contradiction of the practice of American democracy—freedom of speech. Censorship at Gallaudet University is not acceptable and appropriate.
While the answer to censorship of ASL, shall not be imposed from GUAA or Gallaudet University itself, it is also invoking the view of ASL literature. Rescinding an award has reduced to a symbol of ASL politics just because Ella publicly calling out objectionable views of LEAD-K and AGBell, has gone too far in the political climate on Gallaudet campus.
If GUAA board members have direct lineage with LEAD-K for political reasons to help AGBell thrive and grow the modes of communication instead of ASL-centered climate at Gallaudet, then it is a huge conflict of interest and fail to manipulate communicable trust between the leadership and the led.
That is where Ella Mae Lentz has every right to receive an award that fits the character of a social justice warrior. Ella’s work on consciousness about the oppression practices is a social justice award. Social justice is all about advocating for a change.
Please take, as a liberty in embracing and appreciating the rights of ASL climate and Gallaudet University shall be a bias-free campus without retaliation.
Lastly, Gallaudet University and GUAA should not allow AGBell to engage in a decision-making about which mode of communication would be best thing, instead of ASL, is a pattern of derogatory ideologies. Questioning is another act of avoidance.
Please sign the petition to support Ella Mae Lentz to receive the Gertrude Scott Galloway, Advocacy and Social Justice Award.
Copyright © 2019 Jason Tozier
This text may be freely copied in it entirely only, including this copyright message.
As a Deaf person who had supported American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for years had walked through ACLU’s conference 2018 in Washington, D.C. with thousands and thousands of people, after I walked through and met some coolest ACLU state chapters, and national members you’ve ever seen.
This is what it feels like when you understand your rights feel worth every minute, when the conference starts, when there is an opportunity right there. This is what it feels like when you feel empowered. In the last 22 years of being a Deaf returnee, has been shackling to a cruel and unusual punishment in the eye of United States Constitution, Eighth Amendment.
I was a Gallaudet University graduate student with full scholarship. I was expelled from Gallaudet University for my 32 years ago wrongdoing and mistake. That is when I was 12 years old kid. Just a fucking kid. 32 years ago. I was wrong what I did. Come on! How can it be in the name of truth by figuring out the solution, second-chances upon a potentially far more healthy discourse for Deaf community?
How come the cruel punishment continue to fail to meet the lowest acceptable standards of human fairness, why Deaf community in America spent decades in defending and speaking out against injustice, Audism—when is a hate crime a hate crime? When it is a crime of hate, or when the media say it is not?
And if the society are to be the arbiters of what is, or not, a hate crime, who will judge Deaf people without bias? Is Deaf community the last hope resort?
When society took the dominance over Deaf people’s turfism, the screaming pain in the early days of cruel punishment, Deaf people became the target for the society that could not escape the hate. Whether Deaf people’s traumas can ever truly overcome. The answers offer is in denial, deeply rooted in lies and empty my heart out. The name of truth will ever be seen.
There are two important amendments to the United States Constitution that help to explain the rights of Deaf community.
The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. Here is the breakdown: freedom of press, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom to assemble, freedom to petition.
The Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states: No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; or shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal when accused of wrongdoing. Due process means the Gallaudet University cannot give you a serious punishment, like suspension or expulsion, without first having followed fair procedures to determine if you are guilty.
If you are found guilty of something, the punishment cannot be more serious than the misconduct was. If Gallaudet chooses to punish you, it must punish all others the same. I continue to “speak up, speak out!” Gallaudet needs change now. Be bold, be changed, and be heard!
In Gallaudet University, most of the people around are totally unaware that there is any problem at Gallaudet University. Talk about it more! Get other interested and concerned for the Deaf in their struggle for social justice. One day to complete my dream to give lecture for ACLU about hate crimes in Deaf community.
Copyright © 2018 Jason Tozier
This text may be freely copied in its entirely only including this copyright message.
Badge of Audism: the lack of media that has been covering Deaf Latino man by the name of Magdiel Sanchez who was murdered by a police officer. Why not? Because in America, the majority of country is sound-oriented and looks at Deaf people as invisible. Police officer who killed Sanchez used his uniform, his badge, and his loaded gun, to stop, intimidate, and murdered him right front of his yard. And oppressors wonder why Deaf people do not trust cops. Why?
Deaf people are the most vulnerable and voiceless people. David Prater, Audist and a district attorney for the state of Oklahoma, knew that Deaf people had no social power, and had no chance to speak out because they are voiceless. The media continues to exploit Deaf people on the parts of white “silence” who came to control Deaf people in Oklahoma.
Who hold the highest badge of law enforcement? David Prater. Yes, the District Attorney. Not the judge. Not the police officer. It is a privileged white system. District Attorneys actually have more power than the judges today in the courtrooms. Believe it or not.
Two summers ago, when I read Michelle Alexander’s book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness and discovered that the prosecutors or district attorneys have more power even than the judges in the courtrooms, I was blown away!
If the media covered this story well, especially the culture of police authority, they ignore Deaf people because in Prater’s oppressive words, “being Deaf is irrelevant.”–is being taught in the society. Totally wrong!
Like a cop killed Magdiel Sanchez in cold blood, life moves on but the pain continues. How can we breathe and stay alive? That’s the badge of Audism. It’s always relevant. Deaf people are irrelevant…..That’s the face of media today in America where Deaf people are easily oppressed. Including the members of Oklahoma Association of the Deaf.
The United States Constitution —First Amendment that holds the five highest principles for human rights: Freedom of Assembly, Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Religion, Freedom of Petition, and Freedom of Press. They all are entitled to assemble, exercise their speech through lawful petition in the eyes of press.
Isn’t it time for a bigger protest this time? We need more Deaf faces in the process of developing a new consciousness to overcome fear, ignorance and humiliation and we will not be silenced. Prater’s words are now irrelevant. It has already become too painful to deal with this crisis. The power of oppression has been taught to ignore discrimination, no Deaf people may be neglected for their own loss.
Copyright © 2018 Jason Tozier
This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.
I saw this banner somewhere in DC the other day.
As a Deaf returning citizen living in America I have to ask, “Did Deaf community protest enough against hate?”—Our country is based on freedoms that we were supposed to protect, including freedom of speech and the right of people peaceably to assemble.
Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a famous speech in Washington, D.C.—“I Have a Dream” that changed the history forever. George Veditz fought for ASL rights, Susan B. Anthony fought for women’s rights, and I continue to fight for Deaf returning citizen rights, and there are a lot of people who believes in causes fighting for their rights because we live in the land of the free and we all were supposed to be hate-free from discrimination and harassment.
Did we learn ENOUGH that we were supposed to understand the Bill of Rights under United States Constitution? Deaf people has been denied equal pay, got killed by the very people sworn to protect them with NO BIAS? The list goes on. What happened to liberty and justice for all—regardless of race, disability, religion, gender, or even economic status?
Copyright © 2017 Jason Tozier
This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.