Whatcha be brewing now AG Bell?

hey all

recently i vlogged about the Hemlock plant which mimics Queen Anne’s Lace – they look pretty much the same but Queen Anne’s stalks have little fuzzy hairs on them and the flower heads each have a little purple/red dot called the Queen’s blood. So if she’s fuzzy stalked and Queen’s blood dot, she is a friend and u can go ahead and chomp on her carrot-like root. Tastes a bit like parsnip.

If the stalk is smooth and shiny green and no Queen’s blood dot – dont bring it home cuz that be Hemlock and that be poisonous – unless u r making a witch’s brew.

This a.m. while walking me dog i did spot the Queen Anne’s Lace and then made a little vlog several times showing off the fuzzy hairs and the blood spot but Youtube kept rejecting it – not sure why. so here it is for ya all in text English.

Now someone did email me after the Hemlock vlog and asked – what / who are ya thinking of with that analogy.

I wasn’t 100% sure but we can guess cuz we all know what has been on my mind lately. Emancipation / Liberation / via the A New Era: Deaf Participation and Collaboration document and international sign language vlog (go Global Deaf Citizens – ya rock) released at the ICED 2010 Vancouver congress. Canada u may fly as many bloody maple leaf flags as ur heart desires – i dont care what Ridor says about ur patriotism. Vancouver is gonna go down in Deaf history as having righted a major wrong and for that i salute ya and toast ya! Clink, Clink!

So back to the Hemlock and the Queen Anne’s Lace (QAL) – what was my bloody point?

Me point was as we r being watchful and hopeful we gotta be able to tell that from which is poisonous from that which is good and in order to do that we gotta OBSERVE carefully and we gotta EXAMINE and we gotta QUEST I ON. And we gotta READ the WHOLE New Era document and not just take one sentence out of it and hack out the “remember history” part.

No pulling a Sherrod on us here. That poor lady – geez. she did good by fessing up about possible prejudice and catching herself and what do the conservative extreme right pundit liars spin masters do????? they take a wee sound bite and they make it bite her. and what does our President do – he swallowed it.

Dang – Obama that was Hemlock. Thankfully it was a very small quantity and thankfully u r still a good man so as soon as u saw the TRUTH u spoke the TRUTH and u did what i love that u do – you ….

yes folks i have a theme going these days. yes, it is time for AG Bell to apologize. Just like Obama did after he said he bowled like someone in special Olympics and just like he did after the Sherrod mistake.

I love a person who can admit their wrongs promptly.

Now AG Bell is a bit slow to apologize for the Pepsi letter.

They still have not apologized yet folks.

We should all be hollering mad about this.

Ya think us “nothing”????


r we that much of a bunch of “children of a lesser god” to u that we dont even warrant an apology when u offend us?

Do u know how obvious ur spin and deception and mask of benevolence are becoming?

Can you READ THE WHOLE NEW ERA document in full and not try to grab the wee-est lamest part to suit your need? Seriously can you do us the courtesy of that? Cuz we ain’t swallowing no more hemlock in small doses AGB.

Discretionary skills come in handy when trying to find the right truths to swallow amidst the spin and deception.

the jig is up

and while u r reading the New Era document – u might want to review and REMEMBER history.

u might want to check out:

The Babbidge congressional report of 1965 which basically declared – oralism was a dismal failure
and the Commission on the Education of the Deaf (COED) 1988 report that basically said TC resulted in pretty much semi-literacy
and re-read the ICED 2010 New Era partnership that said the exclusion of Sign Language is NOT cool

the New Era document don’t mean same ole same ole

not sure why that is not more obvious to u but i think it might be a case of ya thinking we don’t know how to tell the difference btw Hemlock and Queen Anne’s Lace

How does your garden grow AG Bell?

So AG Bell since ya have a history (which u dont want to remember – Institutional Amnesia reigns supreme) but which the New Era agreement calls upon all the Nations of the world to remember – u r a wee bit busted pal.

You can deep six lots of proofs from your website to try to “hide” that you do support oral / aural only practices but the New Era says the jig is up.

Wanna dance?

or spin?

I for one (among many) am hopeful that you will apologize for your role in the Oralism onslaught with in the United States of America and Canada and the havoc it left behind (physical abuse, mental abuse, cognitive abuse), employment discrimination, disenfranchisement etc

Don’t even get me started on the telephone as a tool of discrimination against Deaf folks (despite Veditz’s plea that AG Bell do for the eye what he had done for the ear. If he really loved us – he would have thrown a few pennies towards television as Veditz had suggested).

Also, apologize for and retract the Pepsi letter NOW!

the longer you wait the more your mask comes down.

I for one will do a happy dance and tell ya how much i love u when u do.

I really do love ya

Come make a truth serum instead of a witch’s brew

For whom the kettle whistle blows or the bell tolls – let it be for the TRUTH!

I promise ya – u wont regret it!






Knocking @ AG Bell’s door – your turn to apologize

Knock knock – just a knocking at AG Bell’s door

yes i know i was there once when AFA met with them and had our rally at their place

yes i know i was shocked when i asked why no Deaf CEO of AG Bell Association and Alexander T. Graham asked “why is that important?”

to which I said something like “you have got to be kidding!”

but he wasn’t!

yes i  know i was also shocked when i rung them up and CEO Alexander T. Graham told me he wasn’t aware of AG Bell’s two Circle Alliance Partners being in legal trouble (Advanced Bionics with the FDA for its faulty CI and Cochlear Americas with the Dept of Justice for Kickbacks and jacking up the price of their CIs)

So I shouldn’t have been surprised or shocked at the latest spin coming out of the fortress like doors of the Volta Bureau via their AG Bell Update

But i was

Yep i was

Cuz usually they r a bit more clever

but i guess as the times they are a changing – it is a bit harder for them to slip and spin and indeed they are  majorily busted with this NEW ERA: Statement of Principle and Accord for the Future that rejected “all resolutions passed at the ICED Milan Congress in 1880 that denied the inclusion of sign languages in educational programs for Deaf students.”

and also the New Era document A P O L O G I Z E D for having passed those unjust resolutions and for all the havoc that followed
(amen I say and what took ya so long – 130 years so long – oh never mind – i think i know what and who)

and the New Era mandate also listed the specific damages caused by the exclusive practice of an exclusionary practice (oral / aural only i.e. AG Bell’s bread and butter)

and also the New Era document “call upon all Nations to facilitate, enhance and embrace their Deaf citizens’ participation in all governmental decision-making process affecting all aspects of their lives.”

self-governance rocks eh.  and this bullet item needs to be heard by the big ole boy at AG Bell headquarters where there is a beautiful plaque saying Deaf and Hard of Hearing but their CEO doesn’t see the value in having a Deaf CEO at Volta Bureau.

ODD eh?

Looking forward to seeing these things change since it ain’t just little ole me and me pals trying to explain the significance of that concept and now there is an Internationally supported document signed by Deaf and Hearing folks CALLING for it.  Ring ring.

Can you hear us now?

I hope so.  Getting mighty tired of being redundant.

There is also another beautiful thing in the New Era Document that AG Bell should be taking to heart  “For Deaf people, it is an inalienable right to be acknowledged as a linguistic and cultural minority integral to every society.” Therefore, AG Bell it ain’t cool to be referring to “those Deaf folks who use ASL” as clannish, isolated, and dependent as opposed to your INDEPENDENT through speaking and listening Deaf folks (who you haven’t even found worthy to EMPLOYEE or PUT IN the TOP DOG POSTION).  Some of the Deaf ASL folks can actually speak and listen and those who don’t or gasp*choose not to*gasp are still independent and some of ur Deaf folks can actually gasp*see and sign*gasp so….. (yes i read the article where your President of AG Bell Assoc had to defend his use of a few wee signs in an video interview with Ruthie Jordan cuz one of your members did a shout out against him signing)

sooooooo Please know it ain’t what one does with their tongues or ears or what they don’t do that makes them independent.  Our intelligence is not locked to our intelligibility and our independence is not dependent on artificial means.

Our intelligence becomes UNLOCKED when we actually don’t have to work and labor over ever little word – when stuff can come to our eyes/hands as it does for Hearing folks Ears

THAT – THAT is the equalizer and your organization’s history has been to DENY, EXCLUDE, TRAMPLE on and BAN the very thing we begged for.

But i got faith in ya.  Yes yes yes i know u know all about competitive intelligence but i also got a wee bit of hope that u know a bit about soul force and truth force (if ya dont, rent the film Gandhi for starts)

and I’m a bit hopeful that you, Alexander T. Graham, will take a moment and reflect on the history of the INSTITUTION you represent and examine the AG Bell Association’s devastating role in denying American Sign Language in Deaf education and its impact on the disenfranchisement of Deaf people and…


Now i know its dang hard to reflect and remember when you are clueless of the TRUE history of Deaf education (yes i saw the article on Oral Education history in the special edition of the Volta Review – which ends with a blurb about the ‘Cochlear Implant Revolution’ – and ya all call us militants and extremists – oy)

For a more balanced, informed, and comprehensive examination of Deaf education that actually includes the full story and not just the oral history as ya all wanna spin it, see –

Dr. Baynton – Forbidden Signs: American Culture and the Campaign against Sign Language

Dr. Lane – When the Mind Hears: A History of the Deaf

Dr. Lane – The Mask of Benevolence: Disabling the Deaf Community

Dr. Skutnabb-Kangas – Bilingualism or Not: The Education of Minorities

Seth Shulman’s The Telephone Gambit: Chasing Alexander Graham Bell’s Secret

AG Bell’s own writings

For starters

The New Era is loaded with earth shattering and way way way overdue stuff and it actually made folks WEEP in Vancouver and i promise u it was not because of the “all forms of communication” part

Still waiting on AG Bell Association to do the right thing and APOLOGIZE for the offensive and defaming letter you sent and signed to Pepsi Co.


Now u can say u were misunderstood but the community said “not cool, AG Bell – not cool.”  (see NAD letter, DBC, and AFA and even ur own members outrage)

We have come a calling again.

Us: Knock Knock

AG Bell: Who’s there

Us: Justice, equality, and liberty

AG Bell: [dang – they are back!]

Whatcha ya gonna do?

The choice / option is yours

We r all eyes! And awaitin’ your apology.



Note: there are alot of “I”s in this entry because i am representing meself and not any BODY (organization) but as always pls know that i ain’t alone – many good souls have said this stuff before and now and have said it much better than i – would that you listen and speak – “sorry” see it ain’t so hard

The End of the Reign of Errror – New Era Now

sadly the bulk of “options” in Deaf education programs out there are:

  • teachers talking with some signs or other systems (SEE, PSE, Cuing…) thrown in to “help” Deaf children make more educated guesses
  • oral / aural only – no signing here folks, AVT and CI up in the tree,

K I S S I N G.  First comes love, then come marriage, then comes the 2nd wave of

O R A L I S M where a kid has to be strapped into stuff to be able to be given the fruits of knowledge when they got perfectly working eyes and/or hands that can easily do the trick

that is not called EDUCATION FOLKS

making children WORK for access to language is pretty dang cruel and unusual punishment

i dont have a problem with Deaf kids who like to hear and speak – i got a problem with DENYING Deaf kids the right to a fully natural and accessible language – and here in the
U.S. of A that means ASL

the fundamental thing here in this important ICED rejection of the ICED 1880 Milan institutionalization of Oralism is…..

that the erroneous and unjust declaration of the “incontestable superiority of speech” in teaching the Deaf had detrimental and devastating effects

we havent even touched on the physical abuses that went along side enforcing an oral / aural only education on children

now if there were any ASL only program out there – and there is NOT FOLKS  [i have scoured the planet and to my knowledge this is NO NO NO ASL only (meaning NO NO NO ENGLISH ALLOWED – not uttered, spoken, whispered, written, dancing off the fingertips, written on the chalk boards – THERE IS NO NO NO ASL program out there)]   if there were an ASL (or any other Natural Sign Language ONLY) program out there that PROHIBITED, BANNED, EXCLUDED the learning of ENGLISH – we would have pretty dang detrimental and devastating effects on our hands too folks

but there ain’t

there ain’t


there i said it

it is a T R U T H folks

it is an utter truth

the SYSTEM of ORALISM (oral / aural only) was rotten to the core because it said:
– you can not and will not do that which comes natural to you

– you can not and will not do that which is good and healthy for you

– you can not and will not do that which is foreign or frowned upon by us

– you can not and will not do that which you can excel at and out reach us at

– you can not and will not do that signing stuff when you are out and about (not in the dormitory, not on the playground, not when you go into town (yes they even monitored the kids when they went into town)

– you can and you will sit here and hold these stack of books with outstretched arms, sit on your hands, wear the mitten with strings…try to discern what im saying behind this heinous fan to cover my mouth from ur lipreading eyes for hours on end to learn to stop doing what comes natural to you (signing and using your eyes)

– you can and you will sit here while i slap your knuckles with this ruler (you know the thing that should have been an instrument of learning and measurement but instead has become a weapon to “rule” you by – “We do not sign here!  Read my lips!”  WHACK)

– you can and you will let me grab your hand, hold your face, molest your lips, penetrate your ear, invade your brain and your brain waves

and you will smile


for the camera

and the newspaper

and the visiting visitors

and when you come home crying from your oral / aural only school cuz even though (hopefully) it no longer slaps you around, it is awfully dang hard to always have to ‘work for your inalienable right to language’, your moms and dads will be told – its OK sometimes these things take time

and the timing is different depending on the will of the child

some are more willing to comply

some have more workable hEARing and can fake it to make it better

some enjoy being the pet

some just aim to please

some resist and get squashed and abused

some go silent

some go anti-Deaf and anti-ASL

and some explode like a raisin in the sun

most get moved around from program to program from doctor to doctor from specialist to specialist from audiologist to audiologist in their parents search for that holy grail – to make them “undeaf”

but sooner or later almost all of them become signing people and the odd and sad thing of it is that some of them use their signing membership to trash the very folks they are hanging out with – look i sign your language and i can SPEAK and “you suck” cuz u dont wanna be assimilated

this is probably one of the sourest fallouts of the oral / aural only push

this instilling in its “products / alumni” that you are better than Deaf-Mute ASL folks  because you can “speak and listen” (ya know – audism – yes yes its not in the dictionary but it is a word and it is sadly real all to real and it means notion that one is superior based on one’s ability to hear or behave in the manner of one who hears”)


as if the ability to hEAR some and speak really would make u better

how do i know?  cuz i too possess the “power of man’s red flower” [speech and listening skills] and it ain’t done me that much good

the one thing i know about the wee privileges i posses as a White person, a partially Deaf person, a speaking person, a signing person, an educated person, a fairly pretty person, an employed person, a middle income person is i AIN’T gonna be actively using my privileges to oppress

and sadly sadly sadly that is what a lot of the D E A F folks who have been raised under the king of audism (i.e. Oralism) do – they use their privilege of “speaking and listening” to pretend that they are better than those who don’t speak and hear and they use it amongst us cuz they ain’t shit out there

ya know – in the real world

so for some of u who believe that INDEPENDENCE is to be gained by being DEPENDENT on imperfect and invasive machines attached to your ears, a battery of specialists from doctors, teachers of the Hearing Impaired, audiologists, speech pathologists, oral / aural only option programs, oral / aural only associations – go for it.

as adults do whatever u please to urself.  just don’t be sending no letters to Pepsi saying i am a child of a lesser G-d and isolated cuz the folks at the DeafNation Expo in Los Vegas did not look isolated to me.

Every D E A F person that i know who possesses the real power of self-love knows that by being a Person of the Eye we are very INDEPENDENT in the truest meaning of the word – dont need nothing artificial, recharged, waterproofed, fancy packaged to travel, mingle, function, succeed.

Got HANDS?  will travel

Ding Dong the Wicked Witch of Oralism is Dead

I for one (among many say) AMEN

Long Live  Long Live the Emancipation of the Deaf

NOTE: im headed for the hills folks so im leaving the comment sections “unwomaned.”   Do as you please knowing folks are watching.  And i might borrow Mel at “We never landed in Holland” idea re: t-shirts ; )



Ah a New Dawn! The End of Oralism

Hey – whatcha doing Sept 6-11????

Wanna party???

Wanna celebrate???

Wanna rattle some groggers????

so all reports from the folks on the ground at the ICED opening ceremonies are that the rejection of ICED 1880 resolutions and acknowledgment and expression of sincere regret for the detrimental effects of the Milan conference was historic and monumental. jubilation and tears all around!

see http://www.iced2010.com/ for the New Era: Statement of Principle and Accord for the Future

Closing ceremony press release is now up at that link too.

its a good thing folks!

(image of “And there was light…”)

I meself was a bit unsure if “sincerely regrets” constitutes a formal apology and advocated for the inclusion of an acknowledgment that the oral / aural only mandate in education was an ICED resolution so the coupling of the “acknowledge and sincerely regret”… have been justly recognized by folks as a public apology.


Ya hoo and hallelujah.

I know i know it was a long time a comin’. 130 years precisely – however it has come.

it has come folks.

No raining on the parade unless ya got ur boots on and wanna splash around. No dampening of the spirit here folks.

We have awoken!

Folks r on the move.

Biggest kudos to the BC Deaf community folks, the ICED folks, the World Federation of the Deaf folks, the Canadian Association of the Deaf folks, the Deaf Bilingual Coalition folks, the National Association of the Deaf folks, the Audism Free America folks, and all the other Group folks that i dont know about… but most most most most especially kudos for all the folks who were unsure of if this was a good thing or a needed thing or a right thing.

Many of folks have opted to do NOTHING for fear of failing, for fear of being rejected, for fear of loosing, for fear of being labeled radical, or extremist, or brown noser, or ….

ya over came those concerns and took a stand for that which is just, good and right! Feel good don’t it?

for all of u who just love being arm chair “critics” – no worry.  i still love ya and have hope ya’ll will see the light.

And many thanks in advance to all the folks who are waking up and seeing how much u shine when u are out in the sun. How truly glorious u and natural sign languages are when they are not regulated to remedial purposes or for oral failures only or for basement church rooms or for cladestine bedrooms or the fingertips of Hearing babes only (Greatest Irony that be NO MORE!) but when they r out and about shouting things like the good “New Era” document proclaims:
“For Deaf people, it is an inalienable right to be acknowledged as a linguistic and cultural minority integral to every society.”

(bio-diversity, linguistic diversity, cultural diversity folks!)

“Therefore we: reject all resolutions passed at the ICED Milan Congress in 1880 that denied the inclusion of sign languages in educational programs for Deaf students”

(ding dong the witch is dead folks – Oralism (Oral / Aural only education) is no longer condoned, accepted or tolerated – i.e. it ain’t cool)

“Call upon all Nations to include the sign languages of their Deaf citizens as legitimate languages for these Nations and to treat them as equal to those of the hearing majority”

(ya know don’t exclude sign language from Deaf folks lives or we’ll be slapping you on the hands this time around)

“Call upon all Nations to facilitate, enhance and embrace their Deaf citizen’s participation in all governmental decision-making process affecting all aspects of their lives” (holy cow – i love the drafters of this document – bless you. self-governance – what Gandhi advocated for to ensure social justice – brilliant)

“Call upon all Nations to involve their Deaf citizens to assist parents of Deaf infants, children and youth in appreciation of the Deaf culture and sign languages”

(don’t keep the babes away from what and who they are)

There is a lot more goodness i could quote from in this historic doctrine but for now those are my favorites. (the first page itemizes how devastating and damaging the resolutions of the 1880 ICED Congress in Milan were – i wont type out here as most of us know all to painfully well what they are but to see them listed out in print is extremely validating and affirming – the sins of our father made known. The invisible made visible.

Now many a folks are cautiously optimistic / are watchful / are on guard / are critically examining if this new deal is the real deal or a raw deal?

The New Era ain’t perfect but its pretty dang good – it definitely aint the Same Ole Same Ole New EAR Era that some folks are busy trying to foist upon all of us and our kin.

only time will tell folks and it is UP TO US!

It is totally up to us to make sure the principles and accord are adhered to and lived up to just as is true our Declaration of Independence and our U.S. Constitution and all the wonderful UN stuff. All documents are only as good as the folks who honor them.

We gotta we watchful and wakeful and busy!

In the words of Frederick Douglass “agitate, agitate, agitate.”

No death of the spirit now folks – we r just starting to see the power of our numbers and our conviction and justice and love!

Again to the framers of this document, I commend you for all the obstacles you had to overcome to bring this dawn to reality (myself being one of those such obstacles you had to climb over) and for all the folks who are pushing it from the pages into the hearts and minds of schools and early intervention programs across the land – thank you for heeding the call of George Veditz – “I hope you will cherish and DEFEND this beautiful language as the noblest gift that God has given to Deaf-mutes” and the declaration at the end of the 1889 World Congress of the Deaf in Paris, France, that Sign Language was “the most suitable instrument for developing the intellect of the deaf” and closed with “Long live!” – Long live the emancipation of the deaf!”

So whatcha doing Sept 6- 11?  Celebration time!  Come on!

“what kind of extremists we will be” QQQ

Excerpt of MLK Jr’s Letter from a Birmingham Jail

(see full letter at http://www.africa.upenn.edu/Articles_Gen/Letter_Birmingham.html)
16 April 1963

Oppressed people cannot remain oppressed forever. The yearning for freedom eventually manifests itself, and that is what has happened to the American Negro. Something within has reminded him of his birthright of freedom, and something without has reminded him that it can be gained. Consciously or unconsciously, he has been caught up by the Zeitgeist, and with his black brothers of Africa and his brown and yellow brothers of Asia, South America and the Caribbean, the United States Negro is moving with a sense of great urgency toward the promised land of racial justice. If one recognizes this vital urge that has engulfed the Negro community, one should readily understand why public demonstrations are taking place. The Negro has many pent up resentments and latent frustrations, and he must release them. So let him march; let him make prayer pilgrimages to the city hall; let him go on freedom rides -and try to understand why he must do so. If his repressed emotions are not released in nonviolent ways, they will seek expression through violence; this is not a threat but a fact of history. So I have not said to my people: “Get rid of your discontent.” Rather, I have tried to say that this normal and healthy discontent can be channeled into the creative outlet of nonviolent direct action. And now this approach is being termed extremist. But though I was initially disappointed at being categorized as an extremist, as I continued to think about the matter I gradually gained a measure of satisfaction from the label. Was not Jesus an extremist for love: “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” Was not Amos an extremist for justice: “Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.” Was not Paul an extremist for the Christian gospel: “I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.” Was not Martin Luther an extremist: “Here I stand; I cannot do otherwise, so help me God.” And John Bunyan: “I will stay in jail to the end of my days before I make a butchery of my conscience.” And Abraham Lincoln: “This nation cannot survive half slave and half free.” And Thomas Jefferson: “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal . . .” So the question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. Will we be extremists for hate or for love? Will we be extremists for the preservation of injustice or for the extension of justice? In that dramatic scene on Calvary’s hill three men were crucified. We must never forget that all three were crucified for the same crime–the crime of extremism. Two were extremists for immorality, and thus fell below their environment. The other, Jesus Christ, was an extremist for love, truth and goodness, and thereby rose above his environment. Perhaps the South, the nation and the world are in dire need of creative extremists.


Added 7/19/2011

(see full letter at http://www.africa.upenn.edu/Articles_Gen/Letter_Birmingham.html)

Thank you Martin.  I’m so glad u were born!

Vlogs re: ICED 1880 Resolutions in Milan

some old vlogs re: ICED 1880 congress

ICE Milan 1880 Language Bigotry

ICED 1880 Congress FACTS & 1 Deaf Attendee

ICED – did they apologize or didnt they?

lots of talk about the ICED opening ceremonies yesterday

the ICED 1880 resolutions declaring the incontestable superiority of speech were REJECTED yesterday

Viva Natural Sign Languages – ya hoo and amen

Alison Bryan of the UK and the Stop Eugenics Campaign tweeted this:

ICED, 19 July 2010 passed the following (rough text):

“…The resolutions of the 1880 congress in Milan:
In 1880, an international congress was held in Milan to discuss the education of the deaf. At that time, the members passed several resolutions that effected the education, and the lives, of Deaf people around the world.

The resolutions:
1. removed the use of sign language from educational programmes for the deaf around the world
2. Contributed detrimentally to the lives of deaf citizens around the world
3. Led to the exclusion of deaf citizens in educational policy and planning in most jurisdictions of the world
4. Prevented deaf citizens from participation in government planning, decision making and funding in areas of employment training, re-training and other aspects of career planning
5. Hindered the abilities of deaf citizens to succeed in various careers and has prevented many of them from following their own aspirations
6. And prevented the opportunity for many deaf citizens to fully demonstrate their cultural and artistic contributions to the diversity of each nation

Therefore, we reject all resolutions passed at the ICED Milan conference in 1880 [about 35 seconds of applause!]

I think there will be more cheering at the end. I’ll start again

– all resolutions passed at the ICED Milan conference in 1880 that denied the inclusion of sign language in educational programmes for deaf students. Therefore, we acknowledge and sincerely regret the detrimental effects of the Milan conference. And therefore, we call upon all nations of the world to remember history, and ensure that education programmes accept and respect all languages and forms of communication. Thank you.”

This rejection is BIG and IMPORTANT way OVERDUE so kudos to ICED and the BC Deaf Community for all their work on this as well as CAD, WFD, AFA and NAD. If im missing anyone – give me a gentle whack on the head.

Now the question of the day is:
does the “sincerely regret” qualify as an apology?

ICED chair Claire Anderson told AFA in her letter re: our request for a formal apology from ICED:

“The impact and decision of the Milan (1880) Congress to ban Sign Language from schools for the Deaf has clearly had a marked affect on the education and indeed the lives of Deaf students. We can all agree that this decision was, quite simply, wrong. it polarized the field of Deaf Education, introduced a contra-productive dogma and limited free choices of individuals and organizations. More importantly from a human and social/emotional aspect, it has been devastating for many Deaf people, their families and the Deaf Community.”

In the letter, Anderson has some explanations about the structure and function of ICED that perhaps seem to indicate why they feel they can not issue a formal apology for ICED 1880 resolutions. AFA’s response to this claim are below her letter (scroll down).

I me self am hopeful that the recent proclamations at ICED will be accepted by ICED as a formal apology and that there will be a ripple effect to other organizations and institutions seeing a need to reject oral / aural only doctrine.

Deaf cultural values are to be direct and clear so hopefully the ICED folks will say – yep that is an apology and we can all celebrate

Time to put their $$ where their mouth is, no lipservice please, put a bit of teeth into that proclamation to show just how sincerely they regret their roots to oral / aural ONLYism

hope springs eternal



Previous Older Entries