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Tag Archives: Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood

Paddy Ladd’s Hidden Meaning of His Birthday

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Credit: Limping Chicken

What makes Paddy Ladd a scholar? He might be the world’s coolest Deaf hippy scholar you would meet. I learned that today is his birthday. What makes things more special on the date of February 11th? Astronomer Tycho Brahe was offered to own an island of Hveen offered by King Frederick of Denmark on this day in 1575.

If you win Powerball ticket worth $600 million dollars, would you buy an island that would be the world’s Deaf-centered covered with a golden knowledge, and one cannot see what is there, beyond, on the powerful eyes? Gain knowledge in Deafhood studies. Look in the mirror and see in your life you see clearly, precisely, consciously and with empowerment. And give Paddy Ladd to profess the master ceremonies that makes the island so unique. Ladd sets the mind to begin your journey and understand your process. Let’s name the island. Anyone want to throw a creative name?

On this day in 1790, Society of Friends made a petition for Congress to abolish slavery.

Can Deaf community set up a petition for Congress to abolish Audism? Ladd writes in his opening introduction of his powerful book, “What is Deaf culture? Why is it of such importance in the Deaf liberation struggle? Does it have anything to offer to majority societies, anything to teach them? And why has the world heard so little about it hitherto?

Deaf communities too might ask these questions. But they would also ask: ‘Why does the burden of proof fall upon us? Why is it we must strive to raise funds in order to accumulate evidence which “proves” that our sign language are bona fide languages, and that the collective lives of Deaf people are bona fide cultures? These questions represent a major challenge, which this book directly addresses, and which, by its close should have come into sharper focus.”

The key statement: Why does the burden of proof fall upon us? The burden of proof falls on Deaf community, there are many fragments of oppression coming from the broken mirror should you see one, this society permitting Audism upon Deaf people and Paddy coined Deafhood to reduce the attitude and the burden of proof falling upon Deaf people, yet there is no wind. There is silence. Above, the search of Deafhood which Deaf people have the strength to say that they are happy and proud to be Deaf!

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Here is cool history fact. On this day in 1861, United States-elect Abraham Lincoln takes the train from Springfield, Illinois to Washington, D.C.; Three years later, Lincoln would be the world’s first patron for a university now known as Gallaudet University.

If you have not gotten a chance to see Paddy Ladd’s trilogy on British Sign Language (BSL) Zone, please do so and watch three parts. Childhood, Manhood, and Deafhood. Ladd gives us the train of thought to believe in yourself and the state of being Deaf, believing definitely with your passion, body and mind hold the pursuit of happiness.

Alexander Graham Bell moved into Washington, D.C. in 1879, couple years later in 1895 today, the name of Georgetown formed being part of Washington, D.C; Since today is Ladd’s birthday, it fits to challenge Alexander Graham Bell’s ideology as Ladd writes in his book, page 214,

Ideology as the site of cultural struggle is important on two levels. The first concerns “external” struggles, in the domains where the Deaf community contests cultural meanings with majority society. The second is “internal” and is crucial for this study. Oppression results in a perception of minority cultures as homogenous entities; yet the reality is that divisions within these cultures may have even greater significance than in majority cultures.”

Exactly and how fitting it is! Majority and minority cultures are continue to struggle in many forms, and I believe Deaf people shall recover strength from being oppressed daily.

Today in 1916, Emma Goldman was arrested for lecturing on birth control. No Deaf people should be arrested from gaining their knowledge for Deafhood studies where Ladd loved to teach, empower, guide and build them into leadership of the Deaf.

When University of Bristol decided to close down Deaf Studies Centre, Ladd was heart-broken because of his seeds in the program has been impossible to replace. In his skills of being a lecturer on Deafhood studies, we should be happy and empowered with knowledge what Ladd had given us.

As I understand that Ladd enjoys music in his own free time, I would not be surprised if he is a fan of Beatles. Today in 1964, Beatles first live appearance in America, Washington, D.C; Remember REI, the new one right next to Harris Teeter, it is the same place where the Beatles gave their first American concert there. 1960s was a hippie movement. Ladd has very much influenced America.

Oh, this is interesting. In 1978 today, China decides to lift a ban on readings of Aristotle, the same philosopher who started bigotry about Deaf people. “Those who are born deaf all become senseless and incapable of reason.”

Not on Ladd’s watch. The reason Ladd writes a book to lift a ban to let people know that Deaf people are capable of empowering their lives. No question about it. Be grateful that Ladd was born in right time—hippy era with bright minds.

In 1993, President Clinton selects late Janet Reno to be first female United States Attorney General. Is there possible we might see the first Deaf female United States Attorney General in the future? Ladd writes in page 212, “Addressing the questions of how cultural, economic and political divisions and hierarchies are reflected in daily life, and seeking to replace notions of passive absorptions of culture;”

I believe it can happen if Deaf people really believe in themselves and overcome the adversity of how cultural, economic and political divisions and hierarchies are reflected in their every day life to crack the status quo.

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Mr. Paddy Ladd, thank you for your wisdom! Happy birthday, mate.

-JT

Copyright © 2018 Jason Tozier

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

References:

http://www.bslzone.co.uk/watch/close-up-paddy-ladd-pt-1/

http://www.bslzone.co.uk/watch/close-up-paddy-ladd-pt-2/

http://www.bslzone.co.uk/watch/close-up-paddy-ladd-pt-3/

https://www.onthisday.com/today/events.php

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Deafhood: A New Realization of Love

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First part: Childhood

Second part: Manhood

Third part: Deafhood

I just completed watching Paddy Ladd’s final and part three. When I first met Paddy Ladd in September 2012, in my birth state, I remember seeing some Deaf people who gave me dirty looks when I showed up there. There were ugly names throwing at me. One Deaf interpreter showed a great deal of displeasure when I was walking down the aisle to meet Paddy, the very same Deaf interpreter was attempting to block me because of malicious rumors the interpreter received from deficit thinkers. I realized that the very same person who supports Deafhood journey does not want me to succeed in my own journey. I refused to let them stop me.

Living in Pacific Northwest those years have not been kind to my journey. From the collective grief I shared my childhood life as a lost kid, I remember when I was 19, I received a full scholarship for two years at ITT Technical Institute, free tuition. They saw great potential in my skills and I was good at math.

For the next few days, it has been really rough time for me then on a Friday afternoon, I made a phone call through Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) to talk with a representative who came to my grandparents house a week ago where I signed the agreements under peer pressure. I informed the representative that I was no longer interested in pursuing my education there because I was not ready in my own core. I dealt with a great deal of confusion.

A year later, I got a letter from Oregon State University offering me a full scholarship, and again, I had to turn down because I was not ready. I felt more confused. I was not sure where I would be doing with my own life. Then my life completely changed when I was jailed at age of 21, and hit a bottom rock. I was jolted back into painful journey. You know, an eagle’s nest has fallen from the cliff’s edge, crushed by a rock fall. Each day, layers of systematic oppression gain more, another layer of hatred I deal daily.

Then I got a job at a hotel in Portland, working in line cook, and the executive chef liked how fast I was, and the hotel chain and executive chef has encouraged me to enroll at the Culinary Institute of America in New York, and it was a huge honor, but I was on probation and I was heart-broken, and had to turn down the offer. It was tough time. So, I continued to work there for couple of years, struggling to find my own identity as Deaf person. Boy, I was really lost. I became the target from my own community, Deaf community.

I decided to enroll at a local community college, just to do something about my life. Then I became a serious student and ended up getting good grades and pushed me all the way to enroll at a university, that would forever change my life in many ways. I graduated with three degrees, all with honors at the same time.

Within few months after graduation, I got an acceptance letter from Gallaudet University for MA in Deaf Studies with emphasis in Cultural Studies in 2012. I had to hold that spot later. After meeting Paddy in Seattle, the next day, I immediately wrote him an e-mail, showing my passion to sign up for Deafhood Studies at University of Bristol under Centre for Deaf Studies and saw course descriptions, and I was so ready and eager trying to find a way to get there.

Deaf-centered academic studies–Deafhood thoughts. It was perfect! Then I learned that University of Bristol administration did not think Deaf Studies was important anymore. I was surprised—I remember that day well. I said, “Why? Why is it happening?” and then I felt even more lost.

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The very next day after arriving in DC in October 2012, I visited Gallaudet University with a big smile.

The same year when it was shut down in 2013, I enrolled at Gallaudet University on a graduate scholarship in ASL/Deaf Studies, the course descriptions was not the same. It was not Deaf-centered philosophy. The ASL/Deaf Studies department was running erratic priorities, rumormongers, and saw great deal of favoritism, corruption, abusing powers, cheating grades, and an oppressive system continues to target Deaf returning citizens. It was not even Deafhood centric.

I lost scholarship fast enough and became the student of four days journey. I became the pariah at Gallaudet University. They do not support the idea of processing a Deafhood journey. They live in culture of fear, reaffirming its commitment to the society’s oppressive core values and norms.

One Deaf professor from ASL/Deaf Studies department once told me that the department is not the same anymore. I agreed. When I first saw the idea of Deafhood Studies, it was all about investment in the future. It was an integral part of one’s move toward compassion as the state of being Deaf. All the scholarships I turned down until I received a scholarship from Gallaudet University, the world’s only hub for higher education for Deaf people—was taken away. I was even more heart-broken more than anything in my entire life. They invested in hate and humiliation.

I could go on more, but the final question of Paddy’s interview: “What do you feel you’ve given to the world?” Paddy then answers, “What a question!”

Paddy has given my world a complete change and gave me an extra motivation to write a book—the most challenging task I ever done in my life. After reading Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood, the knowledge of how the constructed balance of power across levels of oppression affects the capacity and opportunities for Deaf people today and tomorrow. I learned much about myself by seeing thousands of Deaf people being oppressed daily. Even at Gallaudet University, too. It is not Deaf-centered university….not yet.

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Seeing their stories invariably shows me much about their struggles and makes me think of my own. I have found Paddy’s contribution of coining Deafhood, an invaluable to think in terms of healthy and healing process, goals and expectations every time when I would suffer emotional pain; it is difficult to explain this. It is complicated. There was a huge difference between Deafhood Studies at University of Bristol and ASL/Deaf Studies at Gallaudet University.

When I think of Deafhood, I empower myself more. From my bottom of my heart, I thank Paddy Ladd for all compassion as a way of life and appreciate being state of Deaf. In one of my recent blog posts, Deafhood: A Journey of Greater Thinking—I wrote:

To master positive thinking, active learning is a core element of their learning. Deaf people would benefit a lot from their Deafhood journey to identity their freedom, bound, and inflectional, derivative, or obsolete environment and they shall design the goal and assessment for understanding of their journey just as much as building a high view of confidence. They would master the basic content and also express in creative and challenging ways. They feel the true growing of pain. They are taught content but process, the methodology by Deafhood journey is generated.

-JT

Copyright © 2018 Jason Tozier

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

 

 

 

 

 

IKEA: Taking Responsibility-A Privilege

Jason “JT” Tozier shares his raw experience while working for IKEA from 2007-2010 in Portland, Oregon. His stories shows plenty of Audism. Two weeks before he walked out of IKEA for good, he was reading a book, “Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood” that gave him huge eye-opener thanks to Marvin Miller who suggested him to read the book. It is part of his Deafhood Journey.

OAD-NAD Release Statements

St. Augustine’s Theory About the Deaf

Mothers Are Also Survivors of Alexander Graham Bell

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This is my sweet and loving Mother. In this picture on the right, my mother was 20 years old while on the left, my 21 years old father. It was taken at a park in Woodland, Washington on July 22, 1976. My mother was pregnant with my brother Steven.

Today is Mother’s Day. All the mothers are also survivors of Alexander Graham Bell’s lies and promote human crisis to challenge their own democracy including my mother’s child as the state of being Deaf and the rights to use American Sign Language. Alexander Graham Bell Association has fooled many mothers into treating of his anti-democratic actions as “normal”—not only that, but also intimidated and silenced my mother through a human threat. I am sure that it has happened to many mothers of Deaf children.

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Five months later after the picture were taken; my mother became a human subject of a survivor on the same day when I was taken to Tucker-Maxon Oral School and examined like a lab rat. I have been thinking about this all the time, realizing that my mother also had a moment of courage, this is true for everyone, but it is particularly true of emotional and human abuse survivors.

The fact my mother were fooled and she managed to survive is in and of itself a tremendous act of courage. My mother still believed in me, and she also discovered Deafhood that would become a positive step through my journey. It is a light at the end of the tunnel.

In order to call out Alexander Graham Bell Association to apologize for all those lies and hatred, all the survivors, realize that hope is a powerful motivator and a great antidote to fear. Unfortunately, AGBell does not believe in hope—they believe in practicing hatred. That is what they do.

My mother said to me in person, “I am sorry, honey, that I did not learn ASL long time ago” while she was crying and that breaks my heart. Damn you, AGBell for tearing up my relationship with my own mother. Crisis is part of the healing process. When survivors dig through, the pain of their childhood, and struggle to reclaim their lives, their experience uncertainty, fear, and turmoil. Crisis is part of the change process. It is necessary to continue and fight against AGBell.

One of the things we need not to allow AGBell spread lies and hatred 365 days, we need to embrace for change! It teaches us to look to the work we can do on ourselves—repair, maintain, build, and grow—so we can better deal with change that is certain to come. Growth may mean that as Deaf people we must be the ones who to proactively instigate change that is long overdue.

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My mother’s hands holding that 1976 newspaper she has not seen in 20 years. Heart-breaking for both of us. 

Mother’s Day, for example, is now ready to change and grow for love and defeat hatred from AGBell bullshit practices. We will be warmed by change and growth. Our Deafhood will continue. To all the mothers, Deaf and hearing, I wish you a very happy Mother’s Day!

I love you very much, Mom!

Additional blog posts about how AGBell destroyed my family:

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2013/06/13/oralism-stole-my-fathers-baby/

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2014/01/11/tucker-maxon-oral-school-pitfall-a-cult-of-ignorance/

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2014/02/03/tucker-maxon-oral-school-teachers-are-blameless/

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2014/12/14/with-no-thanks-to-my-alma-mater/

https://audismnegatsurdi.com/2015/01/24/a-not-so-noble-cause-to-support/

-JT

Copyright © 2017 Jason Tozier

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

The Most Controversial Tattoo: Deafhood

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About to get tattooed any minute. April 2010.

I am being tired of called LIAR and accuse me that I was not the first person to have tattoo of Deafhood in America. I do not want to become egoistical about this but I get e-mails telling me that I’m a pathological liar and all nasty messages in the name of the book and I do not deserve it because I am a piece of shit.

They would tell me that Mark Myers was the first person to have tattoo just because people would GOOGLE for Deafhood tattoo and the first picture on the left would be Mark Myers where none of me in there because people make sure I do not exist just like Laurent Clerc that do not deserve to be recognized in France. Please understand that I thank Mark for his contribution very much. Well, in May 2010, we met in Massachusetts for a lecture at a community college for the first time and took picture together. We were proud to do it! We became friends after that. He is a cool lad.

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The reason I have this tattoo because Paddy Ladd’s book has turned me from confused on the issues to compassionate and realize more reasonable vision of better ways to improve our society. There are plenty of conspiracy theories that reject the truth about Deaf citizens today and tomorrow.

Deafhood is my official commission that reports the facts that Deaf people are the worst part of incarceration in form, shape, or space. Again, the tattoo shows an important question: Why do Deaf people want to live in a society that learns towards liberty and democracy for all? It changes my thinking of living in an authoritarian hearing world. It is a stomping ground for once and all.

Deafhood opened my eyes to many things. It is amazing how memory can be stored away silently for so long then have no other trigger than a line from the love of academics around into my brain and I question my validity of Deafhood and preserve my Deaf life. My dedication and self-sacrifice in Deaf community serve as a monument to the exemplary who I am today. I will continue and try my best to contribute for Deaf community and the quest vision of Deafhood as much as I can. I do not care if Deafhood is the most controversial term–or a tattoo.

Eminem once said, “You’ve got enemies? Good. That means you actually stood up for something in your life.”

Bingo.

-JT

Copyright @ 2017 Jason Tozier

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

In Response For Nyle DiMarco

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So, here is first Deaf person to win America’s Next Top Model Cycle 22 and Dancing With The Stars Season 22 and set up his YouTube channel, Nyle DiMarco and let people ask him random questions on February 15, 2017, Were You Bullied For Being Deaf?”

With due all respect for Nyle, that is where the buck has to stop there. Paddy Ladd, the author of Understanding Deaf Culture: In the Search of Deafhood,

Utilising their contacts in the scientific establishment and the media, a public climate has been manufactured which once again again proclaims the advent of the ‘miracle cure’ and suggests once more that ‘deafness is abolished’.” (page 159) and “In the case of cochlear implants, for example, one would expect the trumpeting of such a ‘cure’ to represent a contradiction to our absorbed miracle of the Little Magic Box. ‘If the box works so well, we might ask, ‘then why is such brutally invasive surgery deemed necessary?'” (page 173) 

It is exactly a good example of media manipulation when someone asked Nyle a question, “what’s your opinion on cochlear implants in relation to (the lack of) sign language acquisition?” That was un-American question.

I was surprised what his response was. First of all, please remember that I am not against people who are cochlear implant users, but I am against cochlear implants itself. Please remember that.

Nyle signed in 2:10 video, “Well, I have nothing against cochlear implants. I would support whatever a child wants to do whether their parents want to get a cochlear implant. Fine with that I have no say in that matter.”

Do you really believe that a child would say, “I want a cochlear implant” just like that? Remember, in 1989, 12 Deaf children died from cochlear implant surgeries—so do you think a child would say, “I want a cochlear implant and I want to die, too?” Please be realistic! It is the oppressive society (doctors, audiologists, stockholders, politics, corporate dirt bags) that manipulates parents to get their children cochlear implants. Is that not a bullying?

Did Nyle ever read a book called Made to Hear: Cochlear Implants and Raising Deaf Children by Laura Mauldin yet? I do not think so because if he read the book then he would not say, “I would support whatever a child wants to do.” I am telling you that the book would blow your mind away.

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Again, the book is very important for everyone to read and understand the truth. Beware; there are a lot of manipulations by people who are actually against ASL and even the state of being Deaf, too. That is a form of hate.

For example, Alexander Graham Bell Association for Deaf and Hard of Hearing has done very good public relations by manipulating parents into getting cochlear implants.

I am certainly disappointed that people who look up to Nyle as a “celebrity” who gives a wrong impression about it. He was supposed to set a better example and stop lies how special cochlear implant industries are. I mean, he said that he is an activist even he said that he is passionate about language and literacy. Well, did he know that cochlear implants makes it worse and become the subject of language deprivation? Even language delay, too. Cochlear implants does not make better literacy.

It is all about cultural oppression. It is also about the organizing principle of power wherein culture can be studied through technologies of power (cochlear implant industries) and money.

Why not Nyle stand up and challenge cochlear implant industries and make progress, education, conflict, struggle and resistance? For American Sign Language [ASL], it is the truth that attributes to functions, neither economy nor power. ASL creates truth, and this truth produces a function of power.

Cochlear implants has been ongoing ill-advised and misleading term for years and years. No human being can restore anyone’s hearing; Cochlear implants depends a lot on battery economics is a BIG business, yet, it does not restore anyone’s hearing at all. That is reality. It is all about money.

Remember, cochlear implants “profits” over people…is that even an American way of life?

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-JT

Copyright @ 2017 Jason Tozier

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

References:

Ladd, Paddy. Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood. 2003.

Starkey Hearing Technologies : For The Thrill of Hate Crime

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Well, what a perfect timing! I was not surprised what Starkey Hearing Technologies had been done to exploit Deaf children—for what? Starkey Hearing Technologies has busted in a federal sting yesterday (February 20, 2016). In a Star Tribute quote, “Nov. 17, 2015: Starkey receives letter from federal authorities saying company has been identified as a “possible victim of a crime.”

Wrong! Let’s try to look at reverse psychology. Deaf children who has been exploited by Starkey has been identified as hate crime. Is it not?

HATE= A feeling of aversion or hostility; CRIME= any action that hurts, offends or judges others;

“Sink-or-swim mentality”—Starkey and its all blatant lies told to our general society. Yes! How can we describe in one way which Deaf children should feel punished and one way in which they feel they punish? Explore the thoughts to understand the forms of punishment.

Throughout my school years, I was made to wear amplification so I could hear some loud noises in my ears. I had absolutely no comprehension of any sound put forcefully through my years. I made several hundreds of guesses listening to my teacher and classmates talking on the microphone. My ears hurt, my body hurt, my mind confounded. I was punished for being Deaf.

DEAF=A collectivity: the people as a whole that is regarded as opprobrious, as a source of ignominy (humiliating) 

The underlying message for my experience with amplification in and out of school was that it was totally unacceptable to be Deaf, and I must be right in the ways of hearing people. That sucks. Really sucks.

Let’s be realistic. Would they ever will be charged with hate crimes? I doubt. Now the scandal about Starkey Hearing Technologies, imagine Deaf children who were survivors of battery economics aka hearing aids for false images, they had been battling through many detours generated by Starkey’s upheavals and exploitation. It has been long overdue, and there seemed a mission with strategic plans lacking relevance as well as reveal something not previously known or realized.

Time for Deaf community to merge from Starkey’s dirty money and raise “new order” to a new era of Deaf community today. Rome was not built overnight, and it did not decline overnight, either. If Starkey Hearing Technologies is on a shaky ground for Deaf Hate Crime, then it is a good time to know what business plan, to launder monies in promoting hegemony, quoted in Paddy Ladd’s Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood, page 77-78,

the concept of hegemony, as initially presented by Gramsci (1985), is important for the development of a more dynamic reading of patterns in social control, since it emphasises that ideologies perpetually compete for acceptance and domination.” 

Starkey Hearing Technologies is about oppressive policies ranging from hiring to firing employees, from educating to exploiting Deaf children, from inspecting to neglecting facilities. Mr. Bill Austin manipulated to turn Starkey Hearing Technologies upside—UP. 800 million dollars.

Time to educate about American Sign Language (ASL)—it is about careful, sustained, and systematic thinking in ASL. It is about a willingness to get the truth and value of ASL, no matter what conclusions would result or how strange it might initially seem. ASL lead to truth and it has potential.

It is good time for Deaf community cooperation more than ever before. The most important among Deaf people—as far as the future of humanity is concerned—is the industry of hearing aids who exploit Deaf children for circus shows, and send false dilemmas and is closely connected to hate crime.

In a book, The Rising Tide of Bigotry and Bloodshed: Hate Crimes quoted by Jack Levin, and Jack McDevitt:

Hate crimes represent one endpoint on the continuum of prejudice and bigotry. For economic as well as psychological reasons, there are countless individuals who feel resentful. They have suffered some loss in self-esteem or status and are eager to place the blame for their loss elsewhere—on those groups and individuals portrayed in the culture of hate as weak, immoral, and uncivilized.”

6945240-This-photograph-represent-a-100-dollar-bill-with-Ben-Franklin-wearing-protective-sunglasses-Stock-Photo.jpgDeaf children who were exploited for Ben Franklin dollars, must have felt resentful. Did they suffer some loss in self-esteem as well, too? Deaf children are portrayed in the culture of hate as weak, immoral, and uncivilized.

That is what the Starkey Hearing Technologies should be charged with: Hate Crime.

 

-JT

Copyright © 2016 Jason Tozier

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

References:

http://m.startribune.com/mesy-split-at-starkey-is-making-industry-waves/369537361/

Ladd, Paddy: “Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood”

Levin, Jack and McDevitt, Jack: “The Rising Ride of Bigotry and Bloodshed: Hate Crimes”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Reflection: Deaf People in Havana

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Cochlear Implants Coming to Cuba.

All Deaf children deserve a bright future and access to high quality early learning environments that put them on the path to success in education and beyond.

In the coming months or so, with the “better” relations between America and Cuba will face a huge challenge what equates to a cultural backlash with the cochlear implant makers from America to demonstrate how many Deaf children can be targeted, for example. Cochlear implant makers through American relations will target how Deaf children in Cuba carry out tasks such as following “social rules” and such. The rules give America an important snapshot of the Deaf child’s social, emotional, and cognitive skills.

I am very concerned right now. After watching a free documentary Deaf People in Havana produced and presented by Deaf Nation’s No Barriers signed by Joel Barish last Sunday. I have a legitimate reason to be concerned. Very concerned. Domino Effect begins.

IMG_3140Deaf Nation writes, “Cuba has a long political history that caused the country to become stuck in a time capsule, but that can soon change as the U.S. government begins to lift the travel restrictions. Joel takes you on a unique visual journey through Havana, Cuba and the beauty of Deaf people within its culture.”

Cuba is only 90 miles from America’s lands. The beauty of Deaf people with its culture is powerful—DEAF people—the REAL DEAF people. In this 90 minutes documentary, not a single Deaf person have a cochlear implant—and I often wondered why Deaf People in Havana did not film Deaf children—the critical backbone in Deaf community there.

This documentary is also critical in helping Deaf community and the state as a whole identify trends related to Deaf children who did not have adequate access to high quality education nor learning experiences. This assessment of Deaf children will be an ultimate test. There is no passing or failing. There are no blanks or bubbles for Deaf children to fill in. In fact, the majority of cochlear implant companies in America will target Deaf children in Cuba—based on replacing Deaf culture and follow American relations.

Will Deaf children and people in Cuba will struck in a time capsule as soon as the American cochlear implant makers begins to lift the restrictions to take their Deaf culture away? That is where the major concern should be discussed.

Cochlear implant makers and of course, Alexander Graham Bell Association of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (AGBDHH) will use the data to gather information gaps in knowledge and skills and they also will use that information to target resources to ensure more Deaf children, particularly those representing Deaf community and navigating poverty, have a strong start to education.

As the future relations with 90 miles away from America’s social rules to begin its educational journey, we all should have a reason than ever before to be encouraged about the foundations laid in Deaf community to set the stage for educational access for our youngest Deaf children to preserve sign language and Deaf culture as well.

IMG_0852That is precisely why Cubans remember Ernesto “Che” Guevara, a revolutionary leader—and that is where Paddy Ladd achieved by David Call’s linocut [printmaking] art comes in with the picture. Deaf Cubans need to be a revolutionary leader through Deafhood discourses. They all are Deafhood Revolutions. A revolution from the Latin revolutio, “a turn around” that Deaf Cubans needs a strong fundamental change in power that prevents and turn around cochlear implant makers away to take over Cuba and invest a $100 million towards targeted investments to prioritize closing gaps on Deaf children.

From Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood championed by Paddy Ladd, in page 30, “In the days that follow, the marchers find out just how pervasive the mask of benevolence is. In vain, they search the media for film or printed evidence of the historical nature of their achievement. Instead they are confronted with the same media images they have had to tolerate on almost a daily basis for the last 10 years. ‘New Miracle Cure for Deaf Baby’ they read. ‘Wonder Cochlear Implant Operation Abolishes Deafness’.”

The mask of benevolence in this documentary, Deaf People in Havana…will become invisible sooner or later. Domino Effect.

****Special thanks to Joseph Artino, the owner of Zeppe Art for his hard work on artwork! Champ!

-JT

Copyright © 2015 Jason Tozier

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