Deaf Community: Rehabilitation Over Retribution

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Life in Deaf community can be challenging, but it can be particularly harder for Deaf returnees whose bodies and minds are being pushed away by ignorance, bullying, and hatred. Deaf returnees serve the principal purposes of punishment: retribution, and rehabilitation. Whose old bones suffer from exile in Deaf community, who are forgetful, suffering human compassion, mocked, and ignored.

Ignorance does not make society safer. Ignorance hurts Deaf returnees, not dangerous people. Ignorance locks up Deaf returnees who have been convicted of a crime. Ignorance hurts vulnerable community that is known as Deaf returnee community, the world’s smallest human population.

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I lived 30 minutes from Mt. St. Helens, the famous eruption in 1980. I am also a Deaf returnee. I found myself in trouble with the law; I had to face my past. As a teenager in the small town in state of Washington during my junior high days, I suffered and experienced a horrible tragedy.

Now I am 43 years old. The horrible tragedy was 32 years ago. Stories from a time when as a child myself did not learn or taught lessons what was right and wrong who were responsible for my early learning.

A Greek philosopher, Aristotle once wrote, “Memory is the scribe of the soul.”—In this case, writing is the mirror to my soul and the doorway into my existence where I was told that in Deaf community, I do not exist.

I had thought when I traded my life as a dedicated suburbanite for a life in Deaf community I had experienced about as radical a transition as I would ever face. As you read this it is good to realize that empowering Deaf returnees is the highest human compassion. By all reports life behind the fence as Deaf returnee is very different, and is often a much more degrading and dangerous experience.

Malthus who was born in 1766 and died in 1834, he studied at Cambridge and was selected to be a fellow at Jesus College in 1793. Five years later, he published Essay on the Principle of Population in which he argued that population would outrun food supply and would increase population. My point is that Deaf returnees are hungry for circle of support, empowerment, compassion, and higher education in the eyes of human population.

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Do they deserve a second chance in Deaf community? Do they deserve being shunned? Rehabilitation should be number one priority over retribution in Deaf community.

 

-JT

Copyright © 2018 Jason Tozier

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

 

 

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How Mental Health Endangered Deaf Community

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Let’s discuss about the mental health problem in Deaf community. April is the month of National Mental Health Awareness. It is also National Counseling Awareness Month, and Stress Awareness Month.

The mental health system in hearing world is arguably the front-burner issue it has been crafted for Shock Doctrine style that the failure has been forgotten. Meanwhile, Deaf people who have been neglected in the hands of hearing counseling community remains an obstacle for Deaf community. Mental health is one of the most challenging problems in Deaf community. It may be a long-term treatment site of last resort.

It is a trust that is no longer warranted from confidentiality. The role of hearing privileges has played in these and other oppressive environment has largely been downplayed by the hearing privileges.

The governing philosophy of an oppressor in Deaf community to continue ignorance against Deaf community is dangerous and ineffective mental health system could be lifted straight from the Hippocratic Oath: First, Do No Harm. Then, Second, Do What Works. 

Putting Deaf people before hearing privileges overcoming the barriers to recovery. What is “recovery”?

Today’s laissez-faire oppressive climate and broken counseling and psychological services. Unfortunately, hearing counseling system compromised by lies and denial, and the taxpayers and political leaders are being invisible by ignorance, preventable deaths, and the need for counseling for Deaf community is noted.

Who else would understand Deaf-centered counseling? Deaf-centered counseling is the hope that will bring better compassion to our understanding of a mental health system how it works.

Counseling for the Deaf is far more than being a member of hearing community who has shown apathy or incompetence is involved in creating a mental health field that Deaf community is a shamble. Since, it is National Counseling Awareness Month.

Let’s take a look this way. There are many, many, many hearing counselors who cannot afford ASL interpreters around the nation. Deaf members are referred to as the lack of mental health awareness, but without support and opportunities, and there were thousands of times, has fallen through the cracks. Many times, Deaf people were hurt when they are being neglected for counseling. That builds great stress. When they are being denied, too many times is too much just like this quote on left-side below:

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Deaf-centered counselors would able to develop support skills, life skills, and thinking skills along with the Deaf core philosophy. Deaf members who would learn from Deaf-centered counselors taught how to be mentored and also be a mentor, too.

It was all because of these connections and help them to reach ability to advocate for themselves that they receive Deaf-centered counseling when they did while many Deaf members are being denied in hearing counseling world.

When a Deaf person seeking counseling is being denied in hearing world due to the fact that they cannot afford ASL interpreters has plunged themselves for ignorance. I deeply hope that Deaf members should not demonized for state of being Deaf and still misrepresented in the counseling world. It is extremely important that Deaf members should never denied for their well-being and become a better person.

Stress is the powerful force that influences their bodies, lives, and mental health. How can they deal with stress? Most importantly, how many Deaf people will they deny because they have denied counseling and cannot be afforded by hearing professionals? When I saw this picture, Pac-Man as hearing counseling system who denied Deaf people services will always have hard time chasing Deaf souls away because they hurt the most.

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-JT

Copyright © 2018 Jason Tozier

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

Twitter of the Oppressed

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Here it goes again! Trump: Commander in Chief of Hate. He announced today that he is going to ban transgender anyone who serves in the military. Trump is definitely the dumb-fuckest president in history—hands down!

The ironic thing is that keep in mind, Hate Crime Statistics Act (HSCA) who was signed by President Bush in 1990 and revised in 2009 now named Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, is still valid today in our laws. Are you aware that HSCA requires the current Attorney General Jeff Sessions to collect data on crimes committed because of the race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity? It is the law of our eyes!

Trump as President of the United States just committed hate crime because of sexual orientation! How can he get away with it? He uses Twitter “Trumpism” to recruit hate groups to attack ordinary people. He wants more hate members. More hate money. More power. Trump wants to create the most xenophobic campaign ever—energized and emboldened a growing and hate movement. The number of hate groups are growing. Paulo Freire wrote his bestseller book, Pedagogy of the Oppressed that needs to remind all of us:

It is in the interest of the oppressor to weaken the oppressed still further, to isolate them, to create, and deepen rifts among them.”

Trump’s 100 days already—actions are all about hate agenda. Enough. We need to fight against hate. We need to take our justice and equality back. This is more crucial than ever. When Trump was chosen to be president, the murders of transgenders are at all-time high already. No joke! Never xenophobia! Never ignorance! Never bullying! Never hatred! I support transgender soldiers! Shame on Trump!

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-JT

Copyright © 2017 Jason Tozier

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

Mr. Arnold Schwarzenegger, Please Apologize to the Deaf Community

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It is just disheartening to see that once in a while that Deaf people would be mocked for their own language choice: American Sign Language (ASL). When Arnold Schwarzenegger, a former governor for the state of California has mocked ASL front of the audience promoting them to laugh. I was shocked to see what he has done. I had respect for him.

I’ve seen all of Arnold’s movies, of course, The Terminator, but one movie gave me a lot of laughter, Twins with Danny DeVito. Memories were good! Arnold was the one who vetoed AB 2072 in 2010, he saved Deaf community. But…. after what he did couple of days ago, he did not save the Deaf community instead of mocking them. No compassion.

So, I went ahead and find out when the Twins were produced and surprised that it was made in 1988, the same year Deaf President Now won the hearts of American people to pick its first Deaf president in history. Respect!

Where is the compassion?  Is it a right word? A compassion is a moment of sudden clarity on a dank day whether it was morning, neither afternoon nor evening.

We all are the same. We are all Deaf. We are all the same. Though, our stories are not the same. We live in a very oppressed world dominated by hearing people. The hearing world has forgotten that Deaf people have been contributed to the society.  Did Arnold even know that the mirror said to him?

Each day, Deaf people face challenges–discrimination in all spheres of public spaces wherever they go to. The nation that has named United States of America was supposed to live in a peaceful space. When Laurent Clerc arrived on the soil of America in 1816, we all need to remember the old mantra of Deaf progress. It makes Clerc as an immigrant just like all of us. Arnold was an immigrant, too. America was built with immigrants.

Clerc’s America was supposed to be seen as “grandfather clause” meant to protect Deaf people. After infamous 1880 Milan Resolution, thousands of Deaf people even today–I meant, a countless number the last two centuries were targeted for bullying.

Soon, few weeks away from the month of March–the National Deaf History Month. Never mind Alexander Graham Bell’s birthday on March 3rd or Sleep Awareness Month that Deaf people were supposed to sleep peaceful without being bullied. We will not forget what AGBell or Arnold has done to us. Deaf History Month is filled of Deaf people pushing us for future and build stronger foundation at every forward step.

Have Deaf people suffered enough hate from cruel people? The scourge of hate speech about ASL has been built enough reputation. ASL might be seen as homeless to hearing people who laughed just like what Arnold did. ASL, arguably the most marginalized and forgotten group in the United States promoted by AGBell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, is constantly either ignored or encouraged by its laughter.

How in the name of ignorance can it be misunderstood if one does not hear or know it? If you were in the same room, talking on the same objectives, then why was the laughter not very much part of us? Laughing is contagious if it shared and understood.

It is about the moan of pain. Will hearing people accept Deaf people in America today? We will need to continue to stand up against hate speech. ASL and the intellectual life of the Deaf have become quite pronounced as the result of the contact between two educators: Laurent Clerc, and the Rev. Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. That is why it is important to celebrate 200 years anniversary with the arrival of Clerc.

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Before closing this post, Deaf people have given plenty of contribution to the society and recognize them as human beings with inherent rights. Arnold needs to apologize for mocking ASL. We do not need a Terminator to mock us. If Arnold refuses to apologize then he’s terminated! Where is California Association of the Deaf’s action and tell Arnold not to do that?

-JT

Copyright © 2017 Jason Tozier

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

Removing IDEA From Department of Education: Are We Being Setting Up For Failure?

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Human Right to Education “Key 3”. Christian Avendaño Cendales.

Hours after the Department of Education has nominated the person who is in charge as secretary, Betsy DeVos has created a huge mess at this hour. Ignorance, human rights violation, even segregation–propelled by economic expansion and justified by dirty money has informed us the Deaf community what the Department of Education is today.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act [IDEA] has been removed from Department of Education’s website that was supposed to ignite networking through healthy channels and promote human rights; yet, it is not the same anymore.

Betsy DeVos, and those ignorant people who voted for DeVos need access to a history that is honest what Deaf people and people with disabilities has been going through hardships.  What do we mean by history? Let’s shall find out and go from there. Maybe then it would be easier for them, and the rest of us, to make history that is progressive and inclusive.

In this way, DeVos creates room to remove Deaf people to doubt their current mentality. This doubt serves as the foundation on which she builds the rest of her arguments, citing that IDEA is not important–“up to the states” and shows prejudice is forcefully pointed out. Her debate urges the Department of Education to stay with the status quo. Given this logic, the oppressors against human rights movements are equal to those in removing IDEA off the face of the country’s fundamental human rights.

From there, DeVos outlines the logic behind equality and ignorance. Her debate holds that, while Deaf people and people with disabilities are not actually equal, they should be considered to be wiped out.

As a supporter of IDEA myself because I was one of them, we need to recognize the essence of DeVos’s work stands as a call to remove IDEA from the website to adjust hypocrisy at finest hour. Do we even realize what DeVos has downplayed xenophobic as well? The Department of Education needs to boycott DeVos for the sake of humanity.

-JT

Copyright @ 2017 Jason Tozier

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

References: https://www.flickr.com/photos/myhappydesign/

Why “Social Justice” Matters at Gallaudet University

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After watching MJ Bienvenu where she explained the meaning of “Social Justice” video provided by Deafhood Foundation Newsletter, [Issue #6, January 26, 2016] I would like to express my grave concerns about Social Justice at Gallaudet University today.

Inside Gallaudet campus, it is filled with bigotry and hate, Deaf students are oppressed for using American Sign Language (ASL), and in today’s climate at Gallaudet, social justice is imaginatively and speculatively based on lack of education and ignorance, and it gives some fictitious information that humiliates and ostracizes not only Gallaudet, but also Deaf people everywhere on the campus.

As a Social Justice supporter myself, I always believed that producing the Social Justice to be an act of leadership. From time to time, it tells stories that we are not ready to see, holds up a mirror to reflect the realities of the Deaf people, and raises the antenna of our own social consciousness. However, I found it very difficult to write about Social Justice—that should give a good name specifically to any educational institution like Gallaudet where Deaf students are the legal age of full responsibility.

There is no question that Deaf students have tried to describe a number of experiences of consciousness that appear to them to be essential to the process of Social Justice—that is, they find it very difficult to “think away” these elements while assuming that Social Justice will continue to recognize there. Not only that, but Deaf returning citizens are severely oppressed more than anyone on the campus.

How can Gallaudet University ignore Social Justice with stimulate thought, open dialogue, and leave Deaf students about Gallaudet, for example, for hours, days, even years later? It is just a sad piece of Deaf history that Social Justice is not educated enough at Gallaudet. It is not the same today as MJ made this video ten years ago. We need to bring “Social Justice” back and educate them to protect their human rights and civil rights.

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-JT

Copyright © 2016 Jason Tozier

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