Monday, July 14, 2008

Trust in the deaf community?

G'day Everyone..

Trust. Respect. Understanding. Those are big names that we commonly use every day whatever it be used in a business manner or in personal conversations. It's used by hearing and Deaf people.

But some how, I get the feeling the trust is GONE among the members of the deaf community. WHY? Look at all the big name organizations that been posturing (and anti-posturing) to speak on various issues that are happening in our deaf community: NAD, A.G.Bell, and DBC. (it also includes any anti-DBC/NAD/and AGBell groups as well).

They all appear to represent interests in the deaf community. Right? Wrong.

We all got our opinions. We all start coming out with various facts and anti-facts of for/against each other. So it seems like we've all gone the way like rabid cats and dogs in fighting with each other. We all can't agree. But we have to respect each other's opinions as well. (Don't get me started into my junk yard dog anger here. I'm already upset enough).

So how long does it take to rebuild Trust, Respect, and Understanding among the members in the deaf and hearing communities? It doesn't happen over night. It takes a while. It depends on how deep the issues are happening affect the community

Just as much as many years ago, the deaf community fought against the hearing community over the promotion of hearing aids that do help some hearing impaired deaf people. It took time to respect and understanding that deaf people could benefit from hearing aids. It brought about changes in our deaf community. We agreed on one thing. If we took off that hearing aid, we're still deaf. We still speak in Sign Language. That's the main clear principal.

Now, we're going through the same thing again. The affects of deaf babies being installed CI after getting informed that a CI is better than sign language. It creates way hard feelings in the deaf community. Especially for the very person, who invented the CI in the first place.

The people who invented the CI should have considered and investigated the possible reactions in the deaf community before getting the FDA approvals. I hate seeing deaf babies installed with CI on them. How is their future status in the deaf community itself? In a way, rough.

I feel like we've divided into various groups among our community alone:
Deaf- Sign Language.
Deaf- Non-Sign Language.
Deaf- CI.
Deaf- Non- CI.
Deaf- Hearing aids.
Deaf- Non-Hearing aids.
and just deaf.

Whatever happened to just calling ourselves Deaf Community and Hearing Community?

Ahh, there's the fracture and there's the rub, right?
So what do we do?
What sort of path to unity do we all start carving out and working together for it?
Should we have one big Deaf convention and invite all the pro/con DBC, NAD, and AGBells out there and sit down and work out some type of "peace pact" where we can work on every issue in the deaf community? Get one "pact" done and everyone goes home happy?

Good idea right? Ahh, there's my rub on me. It's just an opinion and a suggestion of mine. I expect nobody to take me seriously.

*heavy sigh*

Give me back just two different communities that we had before:
The hearing community and Deaf Community.

Two different types of community trying to work together to make life easier for each other on various levels.
Just don't call names.
Just treat us with respect and understanding.
Time will only tell if TRUST ever comes back to us again.

Semper fi


beta said...

Deaf- Sign Language.
Deaf- Non-Sign Language.
Deaf- CI.
Deaf- Non- CI.
Deaf- Hearing aids.
Deaf- Non-Hearing aids.


and just deaf.

I agree

its like that - but you forgot VS

one small group, thats us, deaf - just deaf and the groups above are jumping on us, saying THIOS THAT YOU WRONG MAD WRONG YOU STUPID ETC to just deaf people who wants the best for this small group - those groups above , feel that they are superior and we are all wrong.

Brian L. Mayes said...

Yea, good post... Toughie! Solution? Don't know.

I guess, I can start by saying: Do you all except me for who I am?

Anonymous said...

Yeah i know what u mean, deaf community had divided themselves up into dufferent groups and separated. i think that is silly, i never heard of hearing ppl dividing themselves... i am just plain ole Deafie!!! i do not belong to any groups, just deaf, period...

abc said...

Sherlock... Very well-stated points, but I'm afraid they are somewhat "wishful thinking." TRUST is at the core of these issues as you correctly point out, but once TRUST is lost, its takes a long, long time to ever regain it, if we ever do...

Just ask the wife whose husband has been caught sleeping with his secretary. Can she ever totally trust him again? What about the Deaf person wrongfully arrested and abused by the Police? Can he/she ever trust the police again?

And that leads of course to the Deaf Adult who was told all her life that she has excellent speech, that she is NORMAL, and she will be exactly like everyone else if she just continues to talk, listen use her CI, and NEVER, NEVER learn sign language. When she finally discovers that her speech is totally unintelligible (except to her oral teachers and her mother), and that ASL opens a completely new and wonderful world she has never known before, her first (NORMAL) reaction is: "They lied to me all these years!!"

Will she ever trust her mother, her teachers, her hearing "friends" or Hearing People in general? Probably NEVER totally trust what those people tell her, because they LIED ever since she was a little girl.

So will DBC ever "TRUST" AG Bell? Not in this lifetime!! Will DBC learn to trust Deafhood? Probably, because their goals are closely related.

Thinking about it....