yesterday i was really sad when i saw some of the stuff on Deafread and i composed a long response and then just saved it in word and went out and lived in the real world.
it has been crazy-busy at my house this week but some of the stuff i glanced at hitting all of our brainwaves of those of us who go to Deafread for news and info and opinions did have a sad lingering effect.
so this space is intended to be a happy space – free of landmines
simply leave a HONK HONK HONK comment if u support DBC. i believe all Deaf organizations need our critical and caring eyes and our support during stormy times
if u wanna leave a longer comment that will be great
i am sure some naysayers* with stop by too – and they are welcome as long as their rhetoric is peaceful and comes from love. no, drive by shooting comments from folks who choose to remain nameless please
*naysayers are the individuals who seek to distort information and lead a smear campaign – they are not individuals who are sharing their personal experiences within the core and coming from a place of love.
Example – a former DBC member feels comfortable highlighting some comments from an AIM chat but neglects to highlight his own comments in the transcript when they are not favorable.
I.e. after joking about selling their ears for money – lassoBC typed
(“ha ha funny DE” but it is not highlighted at all)
I am deeply saddened to learn that several good folks feel that they were forced to leave or shoved out of DBC’s core. I understand that EACH of you felt u had very good ideas and they were rejected. Those of you who feel you were forced to leave because a different vision on the mission and strategies – it is good that you stepped down if u felt u could not support their path. For those of u who were cut off without any prior notification or discussion and for which u feel there was no just cause – i do express my sorrow that u had this experience. I also extend my sympathy to the core members who have held together during all these changes – i am sure they have been hard and upsetting.
I have had similar experiences in some Deaf organizations for a variety of reasons – power struggles. varying agendas, competition, attention, different mission and philosophy. It is hard for any group to come together an form a firm and loving position and stick to it. We all falter and waiver.
I do beseech each of you who has the time and commitment to unite and set up the type of organization u feel is best – polls, clear solitary mission, good first impressions, (no discussion of CI, AVT, Deafhood, audism, etc). I will defend u to the end just as I will any other Deaf organization that is seeking the right to a visual language for babies peacefully.
I will share why i support the DBC so that those folks who would like to give a HONK can join me:
1. DBC is an advocacy group that is LONG LONG LONG overdue
2. DBC is a grassroots organization that is committed to BILINGUALISM AND BICULTURALISM
3. There is more good in DBC than there is bad
4. i have NEVER NEVER NEVER witnessed the coming together of the Deaf community on such a level as i did at the DBC conference in Milwaukee.
5. DBC is committed to peaceful, positive and whenever possible proactive activism
I will withdraw my support of DBC if they ever advocated for violence (the AIM chat blowing off of stress-steam comments is not evidence of violence in my opinion).
In the spirit of full transparency – things u should know about me:
1. i am not a core member of DBC nor have i ever been
2. i am not a brainwashed sheep following cultist
3. i am not fully deaf or Deaf
4. i am an advocate for bilingualism – biculturalism (ASL and English) for Deaf children
5. i am very comfortable with the concepts of Deafhood
6. i am very tired of all the horrible, spiteful, demoralizing, meanspirited, unproductive and ugly COMMENTS that get thrown around all over the blogsphere
7. i know there are more good folks out there than there are bad
so…… honking for DBC does not mean that u dont ask DBC to examine the challenge before which is (as i see it)
1. to acknowledge the pain that some have encountered from their relationship within the DBC core – the pain is real regardless of if the causes are perceived to be different
2. clarifying ur mission re: the BICULTURAL part of bi-bi
to my knowledge (but i have not read everything in the blog sphere) there has been NO NO NO discussion of the BICULTURAL part of bilingualism – biculturalism
and i think this might be the heart of the issue. if some d/Deaf folks perceive any examination of a CUTLURAL view to be Deaf cultists – then we have a chasm folks and the ELEPHANT keeps winning. The answer in my opinion is not for DBC to diminish or undermine the importance of BICULTURALISM
all the scholarly readings i have done re: bilingualism-bilculturalism (BI-BI) have always emphasized the role of audism in prohibiting and restricting ASL to flourish and be used in academic settings for deaf children. and all the BI-BI writings i have read examine a cultural view of what it means to be Deaf (which is basically what Deafhood is about)
I have never seen the Deaf community so ACTIVE, ALIVE, and A-W-A-K-E out there in the real world as i have seen with the DBC .
I have never seen the Deaf community so ____________ gosh i cant find a word for what i see going on in the b/vlogs right now
i have been to several Deaf gatherings lately and someone always brings up – HAVE US SEEN DEAFREAD LATELY – and other folks will say yeah what a mess chat chat chat
and i will ask – why do u think this is happening – what do u think this is all about
and the most common refrain i have seen is
now i do not believe that is what is motivating several good folks to speak (type/sign out) – i am sharing that this is the perception
just as i do not want DBC to be massacred for things it is not guilty of – i do not want the dissenters to be massacred as well
what i truly want is – PEACE
and peace by MLK jrs definition is not the absence of tension but the presences of justice
i am not saying “cant we all just get along” in a superficial way on Deafread
i am not saying “cant we all just be one big ole happy family”
i am saying – we got some REALLY REALLY REALLY hard work ahead of us
we have to ask ourselves (and in we i mean me too) how do i disrespect my brethren?
how do i demonstrate a lack of love and respect for others – especially for Deaf people of color? we do need to discuss racism and classism with the Deaf community
how do i communicate concerns about oral / aural only programs and CI without communicating a disrespect or rejection for those who have CI or are oral non-signers
HOW DO WE UNITE TO PUSH THE REAL ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM?
united we stand, Divided we fall
HONK if u support DBC – If u prefer to handwave cuz its more Deaf-centered that is fine
just be visually loud and positive please