Kettle Black – hear that whistle roar? nah – we DEAF

heye all

first all – i must say THANK YOU and I LOVE YOU to Joseph Pietro Riolo III for questioning the insinuations and justness of targeting me via my work place.

This is VERY impressive of u, Joseph.  this STANDING instead of bystanding or grand standing.

Joseph and i have had alot of exchanges in the blogsphere and we often dont see eye to eye but we have often left our exchanges saying aye and aye – meaning we can agree to disagree and respect each other.  There are many things i really appreciate about Joseph and i have sung his praise here and there before and also stepped up to the plate to say he is a good egg.  And he is.

So when someone told me that he did a good, right and just thing over at the kokonut pundits place – i thoughts how sweet and wonderful is that.  LOVE rules.  No, i ain’t saying me and joseph are sweet on each other.  I am just saying that he has been an honest joe in the blogsphere and so have i and mutual respect has emerged.  there are some things he has said and done that dont sit well with me and im sure there are things i have said and done that dont sit well with him but still we can ferret out what is truth and what is opinion.

So thank you joseph.  u have taught me alot – like when u helped me learn that the famous quote about neutrality that often gets credited to Dante is really a quote by JFK of Dante’s work.  I loved learning that and I thank u

Dante once said that the hottest places in hell are reserved for those who in a period of moral crisis maintain their neutrality

now maybe Joseph has changed his tune somewhere since the time of that comment defending my honor – i dont know cuz im in a rush and some folks’ places are simply cesspools of toxicity.  I do hope Joseph stays tall and firm in his goodness and dont swallow any of their hemlock.

I see from a bunch of pingbacks this morning that Candy is on a blogging binge to discredit, dismiss, distort, … in short – to diss me.  I have only seen the titles of these entries come in and i have not read them.  I have a busy 4 days ahead of me.  Its film festival time YA HOO! so i wont be going there.  im sure some folks will fill me in as i have already gotten a few emails saying OY!

but judging by the  titles of the pingbacks and her comments at Mike’s place – it is more falsehoods, spins, and her own bitter brew of planting seeds of distrust, lies, and retribution.

many folks will go visit and some will drink up and swallow it and spin off more spew.  Many will just watch and be fearful.  Hopefully no one will react and attack back cuz that is what she is hoping for and we should turn off the heat on that black kettle and just call it – crap born of a bitter brew.

Based on her comments and those of Ann_C’s at mikes i can tell you all – they contain no truths beyond where i work and the dept i work for.  the rest is falsehoods or a matter of their opinion.

re: the email group – i was not in the group emails about letter writing re: Candy and her giving a workshop on effective communication.  i was in an email group discussing who she was and if Ridor should vlog about her true identity.  Candy has said in the past it was no biggie that folks knew her real name but then she continues to drag it out to beat folks up with it.  hmmmm.

She is kinda contradictory and contrary folks.  she will spin it this way and that way depending on what time of day it is and then when busted just say “well, that is debatable.”

If i have made any mistake it was to believe her when she said she was so upset about the email group.  i sincerely thought she was cuz no one like to find out others have been talking behind their backs.  i put forth a good faith effort to mend things and move forward – she has chosen to distort and destroy.  it is sad

but i think the places where i decide ohhhh she is so vicious is when i saw her allow up comments that attacked a prominent and important b/vlogger – the comments planted a seed that this b/vlogger & leader may be telling her Deaf children to be against classmates who have CIs.  it broke my heart to see her allow those up and then to defend the person’s right to say that crap.  why did it break my heart cuz that b/vlogger is a good person and mother and teacher and leader and she gets lots of crap for being in the blogsphere.  it is not easy out here in the wicked web world.

that is when i realized that Candy seems to be a bitter apple and might even be a rotten potatoe.  boo i had hoped for better.  yes, yes, yes there were other signs like what she done to Sheri F and Ella and… and… and… but im a HOPER.  its what i do.  its real hard for me to abandon the hope for good in people.  mighty hard.

i am not worried about Candy’s ranting and attacking of me.  i am a bit worried about her soul.  no one should be that confused or tormented but i am putting it in better hands than mine.

to the good folks and the confused folks – know this.  I love her and wish her well.

good folks – pls do not let her attacks intimidate u or make u go silent.  that is when i get upset by attacks cuz it makes other folks say – “I cant risk it” or it makes some folks who have been chummy with the bitter ones worry “what do they have on me and what will the use against me”

do not buy into FEAR – Face Everything And Rise and know you are beautiful

Deaf Culture

ASL

English

Deaf people

Hearing people

Deafhood

are all beautiful

and powerful

this is not the time to be neutral – the ICED 2010 Vancouver New Era agreement said:

– oral-aural-ONLY education is not cool

– Deaf folks must have a role in the decision making about themselves

and know that i love u

i am speaking of activism and not of defending me.  no one needs to defend me but everyone should be questioning her motives and actions – dont swallow anything she says as truths cuz her track record sucks.  (i get really upset by falsehoods cuz they mislead folks and get folks to misbehave)

(ya know the oppressors always get real cranky and vicious when we r winning so that is another sign of the times – good things are a comin’.  dont become what we abhor.  let them spin and get tangled and call ’em on it if need be – eyes forward and march and jump at da sun)

if u care to comment here – pls no comments dissing candy.  u can bring facts and truths if u want but the bestest gifts u could deliver would be to list all the good things we have been doing – or just a howdy of “i see u patti and i love u”

some folks think my love talk is false or lame but i wont yield on that folks – love (most especially tough love when needed) is the most powerful substance on the planet

have a good day the snow ifs falling those big ole flakes that i love and life is good

peace,

Patti Durr

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NAD – Thank U & John T Williams ILY

heye all

the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) has released a letter to the Seattle Police Dept re: the unjust and tragic shooting of John T. Williams, a partially Deaf First Nation artist.

(if any of you are not familiar with John T. Williams – put his name in the “People of the Eye” search box and you will find several entries in his honor and memory – im in a rush so i cant go harvest all the links and add them here now)

See the short write up about this at:

http://www.nad.org/news/2011/3/nad-condemns-tragic-police-killing-hard-hearing-man

and most importantly click the LETTER for the pdf.  The letter is very strong and important.  Some folks might say “well, what took you so long.”  Yes, i would have preferred sooner but i am overjoyed that the NAD took this step.  It is VERY VERY VERY important.  it is more proof that NAD is on the move and remembering her roots as a civil rights advocacy group.

It also makes me cry because in following this case i fell in love with John T Williams.  I know artists.  I know folks who drink. I know Deaf folks.  I know Native Americans.  I know cops.  I know there are more good cops, good White folks, good Hearing folks than bad.  But i also know that John T. Williams is dead.

He was my brother.

I am heartbroken that I will never have the opportunity to meet him.  even it if was just to cross by him on a street corner while he carved and me wondered.

I am sad but this action by the NAD gives me some measure of comfort that this will NOT happen again.  We do not know if it wont but we do know that if the NAD did nothing, said nothing, aimed for nothing, it would indeed happen again.

Thank you NAD for joining in with the ACLU and the First Nation people in their protest and peaceful outrage at the killing of John T. Williams.

I love you NAD – thank u for all you are doing of late

I love you too John T Williams, may you rest in piece and make your masterpiece.

Note: if anyone has any contact information of how i could purchase one of John T. Williams carvings – pls let me know.

Peace,

Patti Durr

Ya hoo – 4201 victory!

Summary of vlog:

“Gratitude is the memory of the heart.” ~ Jean Massieu (Deaf Fench teacher and supt)

send thank you notes to Gov. Cuomo http://www.governor.ny.gov/contact/GovernorContactForm.php (see my thank you note below)
go to Deaf NY action – scroll down for leg reps http://www.deafnyaction.org/?page_id=11

link to thank you letters sent to NY Assembyman and Senator for their push to preserve 4201 school funding

I have a big smile on my face?  why because the news re: 4201 schools in NY state (there are 11 schools for Deaf, Blind and Severely Disabled students in NY) and NY gov. Cuomo was looking for ways to cut the NY state deficit of $10 billion dollars.  He made many proposals of ways to cut costs and change things.  4201 schools were targeted for such a change in funding support from NY state.  But the Deaf community said “TIME OUT” and got busy – from out of state, across the US and even abroad, people rallied to show their support of 4201.  People made vlogs, educated, information shared, advocated, engaged in peaceful activism…  One Hearing father set up a petition that had thousands of signatures, a letter writing campaign to the governor and legislature (representatives and senators) – out of state people wrote letters to, there was a phone drive to call everyday to the governor, folks convened on Albany for a rally in which many people addressed the crowds, there was signage and peaceful spirited activism, folks then marched out front to chant near the Governor’s office.  It has been quite a collective approach to activism.  There was the use of social networking tools for positive use – meaning there was not spreading of lies or misinformation, no shooting down of folks, just keeping people informed so we take a stand and protect WILL!  Wow, im so impressed with the 4201 schools efforts.

Recently the Governor and legislature have agreed and approved of a budget.  Soon it will be signed and endorsed.  That vote / agreement includes the decision to RESTORE the budget for 4201 schools.  RESTORE the BUDGET for 4201 schools!!!!

So celebration time – this is a VICTORY!

Below i have a link to Signmark (fingerspelled then shows the sign for Signmark – I hope this is the right sign for Signmark) – they are a group from Finland with a Deaf sign singer and a Hearing one.  (I think they will be coming to RIT in April for Brickfest – every year Gallaudet and NTID alternate having a gathering on their campuses and this year its NTID’s turn and they r trying to bring Signmark to peform here for Brickfest.  I really wanna see them so I hope they succeed in booking them).  Signmark has a signedsong called “Smells Like a Victory”? (see video link below).  Its a wonderful song with a clear message of “keeping your eyes on the prize” and not giving up.  Don’t go off chasing tangents, dont let the stinking thinking affect, the shooting of u down, the lies and attacks – nah – “don’t let it stick to you” and don’t become what u hate.  Stay positive and faithful.  Believe!  Take a stand and defend and know YES WE CAN!

So congrats to all the folks who worked so hard!  I feel so honored to see u all in action, to go to Albany and meet so many good folks!  wow.  Big hand waves.  I am so impressed with our Deaf community.

You are Champ!

Yes, it is a victory so celebrate while we still keep our eyes on how things progress and get implemented as well as look forward to the next few years.  NY state does have alot of Deaf schools – we need to look at how each are performing, are they strong and truly helping our Deaf students?

We also need to look at what is happening with Deaf schools nationally and in Canada and other countries too.  Its like HEYE!  we need to preserve TRUE options for Deaf students – the right to bilingual education.  I’m thrilled to see the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) take a strong stand for Deaf schools with their position statements and various actions.  Its good to see us cherishing Deaf schools.

The Academic bowl at Gallaudet and the Science competition recently at NTID/RIT both had Deaf schools winning – this means that Deaf schools do have good, quality education.  They just need the right teachers, right approach and right beliefs then they will SOAR – CAN!

So big thanks to 4201 schools and everyone across the landscape that were actively engaged in making a difference – not just sitting being arm chair advisors yaking – you really DID IT!  You are CHAMP!

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world.  Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” ~ Margaret Mead

Signmark – hopefully they will come to Brickfest at NTID this april

My thank you email to Governor Cuomo

“Gratitude is the memory of the heart” ~ Jean Massieu.  This quote is from a well known Deaf teacher and superintendent in France during the early 1800s before the onslaught of oral-aural-ONLY education in which natural sign languages were banished from the Deaf schools across the globe.  It is only fitting that we use his quote to communicate our gratitude to you and the legislature for restoring the budget for 4201 schools.  By providing humanistic, sound and progressive pedagogical practices in American Sign Language and English, Deaf schools in NY state ensure that our Deaf, blind, and severely disabled students have the roots to be able to fly.  Knowledge is indeed power.  Thank you for doing the right, just and good thing.

Preserving state funding for 4201 schools ensures that you follow the words you tell your children when you said, “I believe even in the most complex situations, there is always a simple truth. There is always a right and a wrong.”

It would have been wrong for NY state to balance its budget on the backs of these children.

Thank you for doing the right thing.

Peace,

Patti Durr

some truths to sweeten ur tea with

some truths to sweeten ur tea with as we aim for HONESTea

im copying and pasting my LONG comment at Dianrez’s excellent blog entry

The Naysayers: Defenders of the Status Quo Contemplating Our Extinction, Part 3

my comment is in response to some of Candy’s ca ca comments in that thread

im just attempting to put as much stuff in the public sphere so folks can see how they spin and play it

it aint pretty and it aint fun (oh thank gosh for the FB folks – that there is grand fun and joy and i thank u for that)

but re: the BS busting it is something we sadly must do – as much for them as for us and our future generations so bust away we shall.  as ya can see we r making some REAL good and tangible progress as opposed to all the blah blah blah bs rhetoric they espouse.  they have nothing to show for all their wicked words except their own deceit.  it aint sweet.  it surely aint sweet.

oh and happy belated Purim folks – i LOVE that holiday it totally rocks.  shake a grogger for me – would ya?

hood up

peace,

patti

——–

my comment at dianrez’s thread

Candy – trying to generate more traffic to ur bog???

Folks just go over the candy’s ain’t sweetspot to see how she said ASL was not a language and ASL is bad English and Dr. Stokoe’s fabricated ASL and check out her comments here and there and just about everywhere where she says that there is a Deaf cult taking over the land.

there is more rubbish out there but i too would not bother citing it cuz it is so purely ridiculous – there was Barry’s listing of AFA and CAD as extremist groups in wikipedia, there was Barry’s drafting letters targeting folks work place with the intent to get disciplinary actions taken against them and to destroy DBC all within the context of painting peaceful social activism as if it was radical terrorist intolerant extremism. Yes, beyond extremely annoying – it was in fact – FALSEHOODS and UNJUST and UNJUSTIFIABLE.

there is Mike trashing Gallaudet any and every chance he can get.

there is many of u oversensationalizing every little wee thing that it is pitiful cuz it is so petty but the good news and shall be duly noted:
– DBC is alive and doing good work
– AFA is alive and doing good work
– NAD is alive and doing good work
– Deafhood foundation is alive and doing good work
– Deafhood discussion facebook ROCKS and Rolls
– ICED 2010 Vancouver New Era Agreement declared that Oral-Aural-ONLY is uncool and caused oodles and noodles of bad crap to happen. it also said that Deaf folks must be involved in decision making matters that pertain to them – wow! what a novel concept and a lot more
– UN CRDP declared that natural signed languages should be a part of the Deaf child’s educational experience
– 4201 schools are alive and doing GOOD work
– folks are having the spiritual audacity to assert their somebodyness

Following 5 lines added after the comment was posted:

– AG Bell Dorm name and plaque at NTID got the boot

– Advanced Bionics got hit with a fine by FDA for faulty cochlear implants

– Advanced Bionics shut down production of their Hi-Res 90K cochlear implants due to a few failing hot

– Cochlear Americas got fined by the Dept of Justice for kickbacks to audiologists and doctors and insurance fraud to promote THEIR cochlear implant

– Otologics got fined by a court in Denver, Co. for stealing trade secrets and talents in their quest for a fully implantable cochlear implant

– Signing Circle is dead
– deafless entry in wikipedia got the boot
– AFA and CAD… as extremist groups in wikipedia got the boot
– AB 2072 is dead
– AG Bell Circle Alliance Founders Partnership (Advanced Bionics and Cochlear Americas) at the AG Bell website got the boot
– Advance Bionics banner at AG Bell website got the boot
– AG Bell has finally chopped off the “without signing and lipreading” of their guideline #3 Auditory Verbal Therapy (AVT) ruling

the bad news and shall be duly noted:
– DR / DVTV still refuses to acknowledge Deaf Natural Signed Language folks in their guidelines
– AG Bell has not retracted and apologized for its letter to Pepsi Co.
– Gallaudet is proposing to cut its Deaf Studies: Deaf History track and its Educational Theatre major (bad and unwise and unjust and untimely proposition given the fact that Deaf Cultural Studies is selling like hot cakes at Hearing Unviersities across the nation and ASL is moving up to be the third most popular language to study in the US of A – ahhh the things Gally could do with Deaf History, Theatre, ASL and Media hmmmm – i mean if they listened / looked at the CERP studies and their own Visual Language studies they would know and SEE this is a honey pot that they should be TAPPING INTO not TOSSING OUT)

re: the hiring of Catherine Murphy as their PR chief – the verdict is still out on if that is a good thing or a bad thing. Im hoping for good – its what i do – i hope. not passively not blindly not ignorantly not foolishly – i do it with courage and fortitude and faith and love and i seek proof if which way it will actually BE – im watching as we have been instructed to do so

– 2nd wave of ORALISM (oral-aural-ONLY) is still crashing (added after comment was posted)

– Lots of unanswered questions about the safety and ethics of cochlear implant production, implantation, explanation, industry, usage, abuses, PROFIT, etc (added after comment was posted)

re the naysayers falsehoods and lies but no worries – ya all (u all are down to about a ONLY a handful now i think) have displayed such an abysmal credibility rating (- 300 dB and dropping with every blog entry) that any sane person is no longer bothering with ya except those who enjoy watching car wrecks the rest of us are just passing ya by and loving ya from afar

i truly still do love ya

just waiting for sanity to return

when it does – look me up. u got some real good qualities – i just abhor falsehoods so until u can stop that pattern come see me. and if ya wanna drag out the email groups – bring it on cuz i now have some more truths under my belt to illuminate ya and things with

not pretty girl not pretty how u tried to spun things

and have a good day – its a bit chilly so ill have my hood up as i go about my good work

forgive all my typos but in a rush and really why i even bother can be questionable (i do it for u the reader as much as i do for candy gamaswander gina anonymous etc – yep i see ya girl and yep i know the truth is toxic for u. im real sorry about that)

peace

patti

————–end of my comment at dianrez——

and congrats to all of u have taken the time to read this far – take a bow.  i know im hard to follow sometimes

main point what: we r on the rise and its getting a rise out of folks who want to preserve the status quo (ie the “have-a-little-want-more folks) – no worries they will catch up and just cuz they r fearful of change dont mean we should coward to it

Signmark – rocks

Smells like a victory and below that is Against the Wall – totally relevant to this topic of rocking the house of Status Quo so the walls come down and we move forward

Bessie Veditz (George’s wife) facts and quotes

After Dorothy Wilkins’ shared the pix of George Veditz’s tombstone some of us got curious about his wife – Mary E.  (see Dorothy explain her visit to the gravesite of the Veditzs) and Dr. Karen Christie (KC) got busy digging up facts about Bessie (Mary Elizabeth Bigler Veditz preferred name) so here they are a la KC – if u have any more (most especially a pix as we havent located any yet but suspect she is in a few unlabeled group photos) pls email or leave a comment.

Notes from Dr. Karen Christie (a Deaf Cultural Studies professor at NTID/RIT and an all around champion.)

George’s wife was Mary E. on the gravestone, but also known as (Mary) Elizabeth or more commonly “Bessie.”  Her maiden name was Bigler.  Her father was from PA. and her mother from Ireland.  Bessie had four Hearing siblings.  Different records have Bessie’s birthplace as Ohio while others say PA.  Her family moved to Co. when she was about 11 years old around the time she became Deaf.  Her gravestone says 1876, but various census also say 1873 or 1874…

It seems George went to Colorado between 1888 and 1890 and likely met Bessie there while she was a student at the Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind.

There was a literary society called “En Avant Literary” formed in Jan 1 1893, which lists the President of that society as  G.W. Veditz and the Vice President as Bessie Bigler!

Two years later they were married (1895) when George was 33 and she was 20 (or so depending on what birth year you follow).  There is no record of any children.

One online article said that there was a rumor he ‘won his wife in a chess match’ but that is kind of unsubstantiated—or likely, joking (NOTE from Patti – Veditz was a chess champion and very witty with his words so i can picture him saying that)

The 1900 Census lists them both as teachers at the Colorado school


Bessie was still teaching at the school for the Deaf up until 1930.

At the NAD conference in St Louis (1910)…Mc Cloud writes “The address of welcome to Colorado by Mrs. Bessie Veditz was a masterpiece in its way and deserves to be immortalized on the Regensburg moving picture films.”  (Oscar H. Regensburg is the last name a Deaf man who was from Hollywood, CA and was Chairman of the NAD motion picture fund…smile)….inside jokes…

From the silent worker there is an article from 1913 (Vol.25, no 9)
“How Some Wives of Prominent Deaf Men Stand on the Suffrage Question”
and the part I like from “Mrs Geo. W. Veditz” (the bold part is my bolded, smile)
says
Mrs. Veditz lives in a state where women are allowed to vote, and she has cast her vote regularly since she was of age.  She believes in equal suffrage not only for the United States, but for other countries as well, asserting that true civilzation is impossible “unless the sexes recognize, one the other, as fully equal in all the priviliges which civilization is supposed to confer…

“This right to vote will be followed by a repeal of the mediaeval, often barbarous laws defining the rights, or rather lack of rights, of women now in force in many of the states….Thus in only seven states has the mother equal rights with the father in the guardianship of the children.  In Tennessee  a woman loses control of her property when she marries.  In Texas and Louisana a married woman cannot make disposition of her estate without her husband’s consent.  She may bake a cake and not have the right to give it away, legally, unless her husband graciously nods his head. In cultured Massachusetts and semi-barbarous New Mexico a man may be punished for a misdemeanor committed by his wife. In Kentucky a married woman may not endorse a check, which in Georgia a note given by a married woman is legally worthless.
“All these are but a few of the legal injustices that equal suffrage will help to make right.”

Ad calling for Investigation into NSD’s Closing

Ad run Saturday March 19, 2011 in The Telegram (Canadian Newspaper) calling for an Independent Inquiry into the Closing of the Newfoundland School for the Deaf (NSD), which was done contrary to the iced 2010 new era agreement [Deaf citizens involved in governmental decision making, fair, equal, and appropriate access to education, and language rights].  for more info on this effort go to: http://www.cde-nl.ca/

2nd Ad

for the PDF nsdthetelegram

Past “People of the Eye” blog entry re: the Deaf Canadian landscape:

https://handeyes.wordpress.com/2011/03/14/canada-not-know-joseph-audism-out-audism/

several links from Shel: A Deaf Canadian’s Thoughts re: the Newfoundland School for the Deaf unjust closure

http://www.deafcanadian.com/2010/10/24/nsd-the-quiet-death-of-a-deaf-school-not-so/

http://www.deafcanadian.com/2010/12/29/nsd-letter-from-a-deaf-former-elected-parliamentarian-to-king/

http://www.deafcanadian.com/2010/05/02/neutrality-does-it-exist/

http://www.deafcanadian.com/2011/01/09/wow-iphone-app-as-an-educational-tool-for-deaf-kids-in-newfoundland/

http://www.deafcanadian.com/2011/03/06/parental-choice-truth-or-illusion/

Call Cuomo, Links & Letters re: 4201

folks are URGED to call the gov. office as the next two weeks will be intensive discussions of the budget with the NY assembly and senate.  (518) 474-8390

Simply say: I oppose Gov. Cuomo’s budget proposal to shift funds away from 4201 schools

scroll down to see

  • 2nd letter to Gov. Cuomo re: his proposed shell game budget for 4201 schools
  • thank u letters to my NY assemblyman and senator (15 march 2011), which are basically revised letters of the first letter  i sent to Gov Cuomo

to Sign the petition to oppose Gov Cuomo’s shfity shifting of $ away from 4201 schools go to:

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/save-ny-4201-school-funding/

Pls sign folks (no matter where u live) – it only takes a minute and is a very secure petition system.  Also spread the word – the more names the better!

For more info on the Oppose Cuomo’s budget proposal for 4201 schools, see:

tp://www.deafnyaction.org/

http://www.rsdeaf.org/news.asp?action=view&ID=584

http://4201schoolsassociation.wordpress.com/

join the open facebook on OPPOSE CUOMO’S PLAN FOR 4201 SCHOOLS

http://www.facebook.com

———————————————————————————————————————–

Letter to NY Governor Cuomo Opposing his proposed budget re: 4201 funding (submitted online and mailed 19 March 2011)

18 March 2011

Greetings Governor Cuomo:

I would like to commend the NY state assembly and senate in working to restore funding to the 4201 schools that serve Deaf, Blind and severely disabled students.  By law there are to be alternative types of programs offered to different populations so that they are not pigeonholed into a one size fits all model.   Many people who have been mainstreamed share how “inclusion was an illusion” and they often felt isolated.  Sadly, this is not an isolated case of just one or two students by rather of many.  While some may do well and prefer a mainstream setting, many others thrive in programs where they have access to fully accessible language, teachers who understand and value what they bring to the table that is unique and diverse, and allow them to not have to “work for their words” but rather spend their energies and brain power on learning content areas and engaging in creative, active and full participation rather than spending their days on the sidelines.

I regret that you did not stop by the rally for 4201 schools in Albany on Thursday.  The hall was overflowing and the spirits were high and enthusiastic for the call that our fundamental principle for which this country was formed be upheld: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

Equality is not based on putting everyone into the same environment and expecting them to sink or swim but rather on ensuring that barriers and discriminatory practices are removed from their environment to ensure equality of condition.  It was inspiring and amazing to see student after student and parent after parent sing the praise of their 4201 schools on Thursday in Albany.  Just as it was when we marched out front to stand outside in the rain and cold to chant and cheer – to be heard and seen. It was beautiful to see the citizens of our good state exercising and cherishing our first amendment rights of freedom of speech and assembly to send a very clear message to you that you shall not violate existing federal legislation that ensures that Deaf, Blind and Severely Disabled students have suitable and equal education.

Given the fact that Deaf people make up a cultural and linguistic minority, your push to eliminate and/or severely reduce Deaf schools has a significant impact and is in danger of putting an ethnic group at risk. You may not be aware of the long campaign against American Sign Language in this country and the long legacy of trying to keep Deaf people away from each other by isolating them in Hearing schools across the country in an effort to diminish Deaf culture and ASL (ie a cultural and linguistic genocide) but these efforts have been ongoing.  ASL & English education and Deaf schools do the “greatest good for the greatest number.”  Thus, your proposed budget to shift funds away from 4201 schools is all the more perilous.

We very much look forward to seeing you work to restore the 4201 funding and work with the schools to make fiscal accommodations as needed during these hard times while ensuring their commitment to American Sign Language & English and a top quality education for Deaf students, in addition to all the important and wonderful work that happens at the 4201 schools across the state.

As one young protester signed-chanted outside your building on Thursday – “Stop ignoring us now, stop ignoring us now, stop ignoring us now.”  The problem is not that the students do not hear or see, the problem is that you do not listen and understand.  I voted for you and would like to vote for you again.  I truly hope you will do the right thing.  A shell game with dollars that leaves Deaf, Blind and Severely disabled students out in the cold is not fiscally responsible, admirable, wise, right, just or good.

Peace,

Patti Durr

Encl: My first letter

ADDED: https://handeyes.wordpress.com/2011/02/22/letter-to-gov-cuomo-re-4201-schools/

———————————————————————————————————————–

Thank you letter to NY State Assemblyman Morelle

from          patti durr
to morellej (at) assembly.state.ny.us
date Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 9:53 PM
subject Thank you for working to restore funding for 4201 Schools
)

Honorable Assemblyman Morelle:

I want to thank you and your fellow assembly representatives for commitment to restore funding for NY state 4201 schools due to the fact that Governor Cuomo’s proposed budget is an ineffective measure at cost saving and for many other sound and just reasons.  At a time when approximately 86% of Deaf children spend part or all of their school days in mainstream settings, there is a dire need for schools and programs that provide direct instruction, a fully natural and accessible language, Deaf role models and peers, and instructors who are skilled with methods and materials that approach the Deaf child from an additive point of view rather than a deficit point of view.

Recent research findings show:

  • The deaf students who perform best academically usually are the ones whose parents have effectively communicated with them from an early age.
  • Children who sign early on generally outperform those who do not sign during their early school years.
  • Deaf students do not always learn, think, or know in the same ways as hearing children.

http://www.ntid.rit.edu/news/deaf-education-new-philosophy

Many of the 4201 schools provide sign language classes for families of Deaf children and education about Deaf culture to ensure that the parents as well as the children are not washed away in the mainstream.  This early intervention and education for both the child and the parent serves them well on in later years.  These schools are also very familiar with the different ways in which Deaf children learn and do not force them into a one-Hearing-size fits all model that is often unavoidable in public school settings.

In addition to all of this, 4201 schools often provide Deaf children with roots & wings.  As Hodding Carter stated, “There are two lasting bequests we can give our children: One is roots, the other is wings.”

4th grader Elizabeth Mayes confirms the value of this in her letter to Governor Cuomo where she explains: “At RSD, I feel so welcomed. I even know people like me. I learn a lot more than in mainstream. So, please, please, don’t close RSD or any other deaf schools in New York State.” Roots & wings come from a sense of belonging and ease so that the challenges can be those of the normal learning process and social / emotional development of any child rather than trying to constantly swim against the tide or just tread water.

Elizabeth’s older brother, David Mayes gives us a first hand look at what that constant near drowning in the mainstream can do when he bravely writes to the Governor and shares of his truths: “….I was very sad and lonely, and I did not want to live.  Yes, I was suicidal, and I was depressed and lonely, and didn’t know where I fit in.  I didn’t have the will to live because no one wanted to be around a deaf student, and I do not want to go through the same thing over…”

The International Congress on the Education of the Deaf (ICED) 2010 Vancouver New Era agreement affirmed David and Elizabeth’s sentiments when it set forth an Accord for the Future in which it declared:

“We call upon all Nations of the world to ratify and adhere to the Principles of the United Nations, specifically those outlined in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that state education is to be delivered with an emphasis on the acquisition of language and academic, practical, and social knowledge”

“We 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”

“Call upon all Nations to support a child-centred approach in educational programs and a family-centred approach in all support services for Deaf and hearing family members.”

There are many other stories like Elizabeth and David’s.  Imagine sending your own child(ren) to schools in which they can only access information from an interpreter all day, day after day after day.  The Deaf children and their families deserve suitable, humane, egalitarian, academically sound and just alternatives.

Thank you for ensuring our NY state government will not be ripping out the roots & in turn denying these children their wings.  I wish you and your representatives all the best in coming to an agreeable and just budget.

Peace,

Patricia Durr

———

Auto reply from Morelle:

from   morellej (at) assembly.state.ny.us
to pattidurr
date Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 9:53 PM
subject Auto: Thank you for working to restore funding for 4201 Schools
Dear Friend:
Thank you for taking the time to contact my office to express your opinions.
Due to the high volume of e-mails we receive on a daily basis, I am sending this to confirm that I am in receipt of your e-mail.  Please, expect a more in-depth response shortly.
Once again, thank you for sharing your thoughts with me.  If I can be of any further assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Warmest personal regards,
Joseph D. Morelle
Member of Assembly

——————————————————————————————————————

Thank you letter to NY State Senator Robach

from patti durr
to robach (at) nysenate.gov
date Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 9:57 PM
subject Thank you for supporting NY 4201 schools

Dear Senator Robach:

I want to thank you and your fellow NY state senators for your commitment to restore funding for NY state 4201 schools due to the fact that Governor Cuomo’s proposed budget is an ineffective measure at cost saving and for many other sound and just reasons.  At a time when approximately 86% of Deaf children spend part or all of their school days in mainstream settings, there is a dire need for schools and programs that provide direct instruction, a fully natural and accessible language, Deaf role models and peers, and instructors who are skilled with methods and materials that approach the Deaf child from an additive point of view rather than a deficit point of view.

Recent research findings show:

  • The deaf students who perform best academically usually are the ones whose parents have effectively communicated with them from an early age.
  • Children who sign early on generally outperform those who do not sign during their early school years.
  • Deaf students do not always learn, think, or know in the same ways as hearing children.

http://www.ntid.rit.edu/news/deaf-education-new-philosophy

Many of the 4201 schools provide sign language classes for families of Deaf children and education about Deaf culture to ensure that the parents as well as the children are not washed away in the mainstream.  This early intervention and education for both the child and the parent serves them well on in later years.  These schools are also very familiar with the different ways in which Deaf children learn and do not force them into a one-Hearing-size fits all model that is often unavoidable in public school settings.

In addition to all of this, 4201 schools often provide Deaf children with roots & wings.  As Hodding Carter stated, “There are two lasting bequests we can give our children: One is roots, the other is wings.”

4th grader Elizabeth Mayes confirms the value of this in her letter to Governor Cuomo where she explains: “At RSD, I feel so welcomed. I even know people like me. I learn a lot more than in mainstream. So, please, please, don’t close RSD or any other deaf schools in New York State.” Roots & wings come from a sense of belonging and ease so that the challenges can be those of the normal learning process and social / emotional development of any child rather than trying to constantly swim against the tide or just tread water.

Elizabeth’s older brother, David Mayes gives us a first hand look at what that constant near drowning in the mainstream can do when he bravely writes to the Governor and shares of his truths: “….I was very sad and lonely, and I did not want to live.  Yes, I was suicidal, and I was depressed and lonely, and didn’t know where I fit in.  I didn’t have the will to live because no one wanted to be around a deaf student, and I do not want to go through the same thing over…”

The International Congress on the Education of the Deaf (ICED) 2010 Vancouver New Era agreement affirmed David and Elizabeth’s sentiments when it set forth an Accord for the Future in which it declared:

“We call upon all Nations of the world to ratify and adhere to the Principles of the United Nations, specifically those outlined in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities that state education is to be delivered with an emphasis on the acquisition of language and academic, practical, and social knowledge”

“We 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”

“Call upon all Nations to support a child-centred approach in educational programs and a family-centred approach in all support services for Deaf and hearing family members.”

There are many other stories like Elizabeth and David’s.  Deaf children and their families deserve suitable, humane, egalitarian, academically sound and just alternatives.

Thank you for ensuring our NY state government will not be ripping out the roots & in turn denying these children their wings.

Peace,

Patricia Durr

——————

NO REPLY FROM ROBACH

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