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Tag Archives: Literature

Indigenous People’s Day: Resistance in the Epoch of Christopher Columbus

 

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Please support Indigenous Peoples’ Day all over the cities and towns in the country, “Columbus Day” is a commonly used as a white privilege label to support to any bigotry, hostility, and discrimination against Native Americans and its use is often politically motivated. That is why I do not support Christopher Columbus’s legacy in secrecy, war, and violence in Native American lands. To date, if Columbus was alive today, hate crime charges without question where the trial is necessary for Columbus.

There are plenty of literature reviews on Native Americans and criminal justice, found one of the literature reviews focusing ethno-violence and found not a single case of Native Americans as victims of racially motivated violence. It makes them deeper than an invisible cloak. It is literally bad! What had Native Americans done to them? Kurt Vonnegut writes in his book, Breakfast of Champions: As children we were taught to memorize this year with pride and joy as the year people began living full and imaginative lives on the continent of North America. Actually, people had been living full and imaginative lives on the continent of North American for hundreds of years before that. 1492 was simply the year sea pirates began to rob, cheat, and kill them.”

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What is Indigenous People’s Day? It is about celebrating of the Indigenous peoples in North America to celebrate their culture, language, and arts. It is important to appreciate them as part of humanity and it is also difficult to imagine and understand the current strains of Indigenous peoples where they face the connections with colonialism. As for Columbus’ trial, according to the United Nations: 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide:

any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such:

 a: Killing members of the group;

b: Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;

c: Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;

d: Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group;

e: Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group. (Article II)

Do we need to celebrate Columbus Day what he has robbed Indigenous Peoples lives? It should be student-centered, human-centered, and love-centered that we need to retain our knowledge about Indigenous People in schools. Also, it can be educator-led that we need strong educators to bring in stronger awareness that impacts learning. At a human compassion, we all need a healthy terminology such as Indigenous People’s Day.

Finally, it should be Hate-Free, as Indigenous People deserve an education without financial hardships. They deserve a chance to thrive in their lives, without facing hate and racism daily. We need teachers and learners clearly to share a common interest in positive meaning and we need to re-invest Native American literature more often in our public schools and universities. Can we channel our knowledge toward the essentials of teaching and learning about Indigenous People’s Day? Please visit this YouTube video with captions provided:

 

-JT

Copyright © 2017 Jason Tozier

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

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Democracy and Freedom of Press Are Our Lifeblood!

Gallaudet University: Bilingual Mission Task Force

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It is important to have bilingualism at Gallaudet University today. We all know that American Sign Language (ASL) is our most natural form by the meaning through personal of all experiences. No question about that. ASL shows us the greatest skills of our civilization, along with literature in meaning significance.

At the same time, it is very important to emphasize that bilingualism has created all of us in this nation—same concept, as we are the nation of immigrants.

We need to change the attitude by adding “written” English—not “spoken” English as President Roberta “Bobbi” Cordano has informed the audience and live streaming for State of the University presentation to discuss Gallaudet Priorities Update to focus on a framework for bilingualism–but there is huge concern about bimodality [sign and speak with mouth] that has been added to Gallaudet’s priorities.

ASL-Written English bilingualism fosters empathy, trust, and mutual understanding. I wonder if the task force for Bilingual Mission hand-picked by President Cordano would aspire to affirm between ASL and English and depend the sense of awe and grace that accompanies an awareness of ASL-English bilingualism.

For example, there is someone who is on the task force team is a huge supporter of bimodality philosophy–which could bring big concerns on that issue.

Will Bilingual Mission Task Force create pathways better education to walk toward ASL-‘written’ English bilingualism? Do they teach the need to heal from the traumas of living in less than a just, sacred and sustainable world that Oralism is above ASL? How can they fix the concerns to resist the further destruction of the ASL-‘spoken’ English hegemony?

“Written” English is important to our intellectual and academic life. The task force needs to remove “spoken” English or bimodality philosophy off the table and expose that written English would bring many lifelong learning process that is the essence of our literacy–in other words, bimodality is all about academic hypocritism.

Gallaudet University would become the university that uses exclusive ASL for intellectual discourses–building relationship in this university to the world. Remember, the greatest gift what George Veditz in the 1913 film, The Preservation of Sign Language, promised our world including Gallaudet University.

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I know for a fact that Veditz would challenge the Bilingual Mission Task Force to remove ‘bimodality’ or ‘spoken’ English–will they make any difference this time? The change to stop language oppression and hegemony has been recognized and we do not need to deal with that.

In 1864, National Deaf Mute College was never about bimodality–it was about educating students in exclusive sign language. Keep that way.

-JT

Copyright @ 2017 Jason Tozier

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

Deaf Awareness Month: A Knowledge of Matter

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I realized that there are not enough knowledge Deaf Awareness Month and it is evident that it has not come to a head. There is more work to be done in order to make it so the Deaf community are not exploited in literature but portrayed and seen as equals to individuals who are not exhibiting the meaning of Deaf. Being exposed to early literature makes one aware that even with vast improvements in rights and advantages that Deaf people enjoy, there are still negative mentalities that have not been eliminated.

Particularly the belief held that Deaf people are in some way broken and need to either assimilate or overcome what “ails” them in order to be accepted into society of viewed as “normal”. These viewpoints are not reached alone. I’ve become more and more conscious of the fact that with the visible nature of being Deaf, it becomes too easy for many to see merely one puzzle piece that is being presented to the world, and think that shows the entire picture of who a person is. So they try to hammer interlocking edges of the puzzle into the picture of other individuals without considering that the pieces do not fit for a reason.

Humans tend to view most groups in stereotype until they get to know some individual within the group. Literature serves as an introduction to these Deaf people. More often than not, these introductions end in exploitation. Yet, once we start seeing a Deaf leader, begin to widen and move beyond the limits of typical. What is simultaneously hard and easy to grasp is that there is more movement to be done. The human consciousness is ready for an expansion and literature is calling for it.

We will aim for a deepened understanding of the social, economic, and political aspects of Deaf people as perceived and embodied in literature.

I believe that Deaf Awareness Month serves to do more than just encourage a politically correct vocabulary. It helps one consider the foundation of human perception that even spans to the recognition of beauty in society. Focusing only on Deaf issues, it is evident that social and economic advances go hand in hand but that the economic element of Deaf often goes to benefit those with abilities. Those portraying or capitalizing on those people who are Deaf.

-JT

Copyright © 2016 Jason Tozier

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

Rest in Peace, Grandma

My grandmother, Mary Tozier was the one who influenced me into literacy and I grow to love literacy today and tomorrow. I am thankful what you had taught me. I will miss you very much. Rest in peace, Grandma.

Tucker-Maxon Oral School Teachers Are Blameless

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That’s me. 1978. Tucker-Maxon School Playground.

My mother was only 18 years old and my father was 20 years old when I was born in the same year President Nixon had resigned. The majority of my relatives are hearing. Almost all except one person who could communicate with me in sign language with me was my younger brother. At age two, I was placed into my very first school, Tucker-Maxon Oral School in Portland, Oregon. The school was not cheap! I was a product of an oral school where their school philosophy that does not promote sign language on the ground which makes my education accessibility harder.

They were trying to make me to act like a prize horse with having my own audiologists, teachers, and speech therapists policing me around and learn how to use my voice and not to use sign language and lose my dignity. That is where I became myself as “another” and loses my sense as an individual. I was only two years old that time!

I can remember my first teacher, Chris (Wolf) Soland who told my parents that everything will be all right. What a big lie! Chris Soland and Alice Davis lied through their yellow teeth and tried very hard to make me successful. Their plan did not work at all. I was glad that I was a rebel kid. A friend of mine told me a story last year that a student also went to Tucker-Maxon, for the take-home final, he wrote “I do have good hearing friends but somehow, I try to make myself act normal and that I wasn’t deaf”–it broke my heart! He was taught about “hearing” people but they were not taught how to be “hearing”. Can you see the difference? It is so unfair!

I was thankful that I was asked to read a book called Cratylus where Plato had Socrates question whether signs by the Deaf are equated with spoken and written names or words. The answer is aye. About 2,500 years ago, in and around the area we now call Greece, a philosopher who may have called himself Plato began an experiment in writing that would shape the world of human intelligence. Embarrassed and heartbroken by the death of his mentor Socrates, Plato left Athens and went to live in Alexandria in Egypt for 20 years. Upon his return to Greece, Plato founded The Academy–the prototype of today’s colleges and universities.

Plato had inherited writing from the Egyptians who were always mindful of the fate of Thoth, the name given by the Greeks to the Egyptian god of writing and knowledge–of intelligence, reason, and logical–associated with learning, language, and literature. After Thoth presented his invention in the court of Pharaoh, he was removed from the chamber so his masterpiece could be examined and deliberated. It was decided that Thoth should be punished to die because written words cannot be questioned for the answers to Pharaoh’s quest for truth. Although the written words are keys to doors leading to truth, the doors are not opened and the truth beyond the doors are not perceptible to Pharaoh’s eye, which means no prior knowledge.

The whole point is that Tucker-Maxon Oral School knows that Oralism is not even part of intelligence, reason, and logical–again, associated with learning, language, and literature. Tucker-Maxon teachers are too stupid to know that sign language is very much part of intellectual discourse, while Oralism has NO knowledge and is not perceptible in our eyes! Also, cochlear implant companies as well as late Mr. William House, the father of Cochlear Implant, heavily appropriated Tucker-Maxon. In fact, Tucker-Maxon was the first oral school in America to offer cochlear implant program. Oregon is the home of the cochlear implanted. I will not name William House as Dr. William House, I will call him Mr. William House instead because he does not deserve the title of Doctor. He said, “Deafness is a such a horrible thing”, he told an audience at Brigham Young University (BYU) in 1997. “If a person can hear in their last years of life, I think it is worth it. I recently put an implant in a 95 years old man. He got married after that” What a gelding! His wife was exploiting his life insurance. That was the bottom line. By the way, Karl White was his huge supporter.

Even my Individual Education Plan (IEP) reports said that I couldn’t be successful student if I did not learn Oralism right. Ha ha ha! Tucker-Maxon needs to be shut down for good because there are thousands of violations with no sanctions for the teachers with weapons in their hands. The fact is for the oligarchy and their servants, there is no law against teachers who cannot be blameless as well as their money donors and media trolls to suggest that the society should lynch Deaf children’s hands and be judged by a jury of Audists. Póg Mo Éireannach Thóin! (Kiss My Irish Ass!)

-JT

Copyright © Jason Tozier

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

References:

Plato, by Reeve, C.D.C. 1998. Cratylus. Cambridge: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc.

http://www.latimes.com/news/custom/scimedemail/la-me-william-house-20121212,0,271457.story

http://www.hei.org/stories/articles/william_house.html