Viva De’VIA – Deaf View / Image Art

Viva De’VIA –

Deaf View / Image Art

Some folks have been asking me about De’VIA – Deaf View / Image Art

do ya all know how much i love ya when u wake up!  smile

De’VIA is awesome – plain and simple.

It is a term coined by 9 Deaf artists in 1989 on the eve of Deaf Way I in which they sought out to coin a word for art ABOUT the Deaf experience.  It was a follow up to the Deaf artists colony in Austin, Texas that ran from 1975 – 1980 called Spectrum.  The De’VIA think tank of 1989 was a four day workshop where the nine Deaf artists looked at slides of various Deaf artists works to see a pattern, common motifs, compositions, use of colors, etc and give a name for this movement.  The term they came up with originated in ASL first – they all sat around and brainstormed and played and came up with –


VIEW (as in point of view and perspective)

IMAGE (they used the hand shape of an open piece of paper or canvas that the “V” handshape for VIEW looks at)


They then abbreviated it to be De’VIA – to give it a French look as a nod to Laurent Clerc who brought LSF (French Sign Language) to the US of A and of which ASL is largely composed of.

Kudos to Dr. Betty G. Miller and Dr. Paul Johnston who organized the De’VIA think tank and the other artists who attended and contributed their big hearts and souls to rock and roll the good stuff.

The signatories of the De’VIA manifesto:
Dr. Betty G. Miller, painter;
Dr. Paul Johnston, sculptor;
Dr. Deborah M. Sonnenstrahl, art historian;
Chuck Baird, painter;
Guy Wonder, sculptor;
Alex Wilhite, painter;
Sandi Inches Vasnick, fiber artist;
Nancy Creighton, fiber artist;
And Lai-Yok Ho, video artist.

De’VIA mural – image courtesy of Nancy Creighton (c)

They even made a group mural as a visual signature of their manifesto but the mural was later taken from Gallaudet and is now missing – it is not clear if it was stolen or where its whereabouts are now.

I’ll try to vlog  soon so u can see see the sign for De’VIA but im in a rush and my isight no see-see my imovie lately – no idea why.

Just know De’VIA rocks cuz it speaks the truth VISUALLY!

Link to info and actual De’VIA manifesto with 9 signatories names

Below are some links cuz knowledge is power and know that in the Dyer Arts Center of NTID on Wed Nov  2nd from 2-4 pm De’VIA artists Nancy Rourke and Warren Miller will present on their work and a reception will follow.  (interpreted for non-signers)  I’m so pumped.  Nov 4 fri from 1-2 there is a workshop by nancy and warren in the RADSCC in the SAU

Nancy and Warren’s canvases have been pulled out of the crates and it is an explosion of primary colors and affirmation and resistance art. Ya hoo!  Feed my soul, feed my soul!

The role of the artist is to disturb the peace ~ James Baldwin

(he was speaking of negative peace and i agree)

Seriously – Nancy Rourke and Warren Miller’s art is rocking!

And just in time for the Day of the Dead and Hallow’s Eve, which are times to remember our ancestors, since Rourke and W. Miller have several tributes to Deaf ancestors in this show.


Also this weekend NTID performing arts has the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, which while not Deaf -themed has a great deal of shadows and puppetry and is promising to be a visual feast for the eyes.

Matt Hammil is at the Little Theatre tonight for the screening of The Hammer (sold out) but other showings locally this weekend and next week.

Kim Bianco Majeri is in Rochester presenting on activism and Deaf education – NTID last night, RRCD tonight and RSD tmw

Leon Lim got cut from Bravo’s A Work of Art last night – boo (i didnt see the episode yet but got the news via a friend – will watch it on my tivo later but me pal said the art critics said – “where is the Deaf of you in your art?” – see even Hearing folks know the importance of De’VIA even if they dont know the name for it).  ADDED: i just watched the program.  Oh, it made me so sad to see him get cut.  Especially cuz the trash bin guy’s work really shouldnt have beaten out Leon’s.  Boo and Grr but i often dont agree with judges on these types of shows.  Very sorry Leon.  So glad u were on it though!  Keep making art.


ok links to some good stuff:

Several articles on De’VIA here:

PDurrArticle2006(1) Investigating De’VIA article



Supt Tucker et al – More Truths about Cochlear Implants

Supt Tucker –

You are wrong.  I’m sorry to contradict ya and I’m sorry if its a dang misquote by the media but the statement:

“Cochlear implants are not controversial in the Deaf community,” Tucker said. “Maybe 20 years ago — yes. But not today.”

as seen in the article Cochlear Implants Restore Quality of Life for Columbia Worker  is not TRUE, dude.

Not true at all.  Cochlear Implants are MEGA controversial within the Deaf community and at large.

The article goes on to say:

At MSD, many students, faculty members and parents have the implants, he said. They are an accepted part of the community.

Now if the “They” in that sentence refers to the PEOPLE – then that statement is TRUE.  But if
“they” refers to the cochlear implant as it does in the above sentence then it is NOT TRUE

While the folks who have and/or choose CI for their children are not the controversy – the device, the systems, the profit, the reliability, the liabilities etc are CONTROVERSIAL – STILL and more so now than 20 years ago,  Mr. Tucker.  they (the devices and the systems that promote and propagate them) are MORE controversial than ever.

See the multitudes of articles and books that have been published about the question of ethics and cochlear implants.

Note the questions about bodily integrity, language rights, cultural and linguistic genocide, notice the profit margins, notice the PRESSURE – the parents are under an INORDINATE amount of pressure  to implant their children.  They are told its safe and will work wonders.  And sometimes it is and some times IT IS NOT.

The whole truth and nothing but the truth, Mr. Tucker.

The biggest problem that may be facing our commUNITY is our collective willingness to remain IGNORant and to INGORE things we feel are too big or too bad for us to deal with.

This has been the approach of MANY disenfranchised folks – its called survival and it yields little to no gain.  And certainly no true progress or positive peace (see MLK Letter from Jail for what “positive peace” means).  All it does is put a balm on the ouchie and put folks to sleep with the lullablies of falsehoods and sugarplums of deceit dreams.

Cochlear implants have been around for 40 + years and while by and large they do turn on and off, they dont always (see the numerous recalls – some times they stop cold and some times the fail to stop) and when they do turn on and off as designed, they have ALOT of SHORTCOMINGS and they have FALLEN SHORT of all their GRANDIOSE promises.

Way short – the parents and the products of cochlear implants are owed some HEFTY refund checks.

some have sued and gotten their shhhhh money but many have not – they the co. got MIGHTY small print to go along with all the paper work for the implants.




Yes cochlear implants have increased in production, profit, and prophecies but still the results are POOR.

And, aint we been there, done that before during the Reign of Oralism (oral  /aural ONLY)?

So now we have the 2nd Wave of Oral (AVT) / Aural (CIs) ism and look what it is getting us?

some folks can speak – whipeee – folks could do that before with or without assistance.  there was usually no rhyme or reason behind who could ride the unicycle and who could not.  more audition helped but not always.  And so we see the same pattern with CIs and AVT.

The TEST SCORES ARE NOT BETTER FOLKS.  Yes more kids can speak maybe and more kids can hear a bit more maybe but…at best they are said to be “hard of hearing” which has a million pitfalls to it because these are usually the ones who can fake it but never really truly make it – they just pretend better and have more to “pass” with to be “passed by” later with. Folks with implants still prefer visual information even the wee things are hungry for the visual to the point that the SYSTEM and professionals are virtually trying to BLINDFOLD them and HANDCUFF them under the mask of benevolence – its for ur own good – its what we need to do to get those auditory nerves into full gear and doing the things they are supposed to do before they get “crowded out by the visual acuity” – REALLY – if you can SEE from all ur brain testing that the kids r naturally DRAWN to the visual – dont u get a wee bit conflicted to deny them such under the guise of “helping” them?  Dont ur conscience even rattle just a wee bit about this cruel and unusual punishment of actively and SYSTEMATICALLY depraving Deaf children of a fully natural and accessible language?  And programming and mapping and conditioning them to be dependent on artificial devices that are PRONE to breaking.  These things are NOT built for a life time as falsely advertised.

Yes, Supt. Tucker cochlear implants ARE controversial within the Deaf community.

dont believe that Deaf children in addition to being subjected to anesthesia and surgery and mapping and testing and prodding and prompting are also being denied visual acuity? – well, see the white fan they hold up during AVT lessons and see that kids are PUNISHED in oral schools when they so much at POINT at a poster in the hallway or tap a classmate for their attention or gesture during lunch.  It is STILL happening today folks all over the US of A.

It is still happening in the US of A folks – dont deny it cuz i myself tried to tell myself it was a thing of the past but folks keep dropping by to tell me – nope not the past – happened to me 2 years ago at my oral school.  OH CRUD!   dont ya all know how much i desire not to know these things cuz i dont want them to be true?!  but since im a truth seeker here they come – without me even looking for ’em.  Wham Bam – u can not go back to sleep miss mam patti.  nope u got to WAKE UP and STAND UP.  even if u is all by urself (which i aint – thank u thank u thank u people who are awake, aware, and active – i SEE you and we NEED you)

So all this NEW push for get them early early pre-dawn early before their brain gets hardwired for vision is CRUEL and UNUSUAL punishment.  Its like saying that blind folks who get an eye implant should have their hands taped up so they would NOT be tactilely oriented.  Denying folks what comes natural under the guise of HELPING them is WRONG and UNJUST.

their is NOTHING wrong with the Deaf child’s brain except for the fact that folks all over the globe systematically deny these brains of a fully natural and accessible language.  Language deprivation has actually PROVEN to stymie the brain – cause parts of it to rot and break down and go dead from having been fallow for so long.  HENCE THE CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY CHARGE by many folks in the field of linguistic and human rights (Dr. Tove Skutnabb-Kangas, Dr. Lane, Dr. Cummins, Dr. Ladd, etc)

They have been saying this for a mighty long time.  Now in the case of Mr. Tucker’s students, parents and employees with CI – they are all signers so the issue is pretty moot for that population but for the MAJORITY – nope that will not be the case during the critical period of language acquisition – THEY, the babes, will not be getting ASL so it is totally a position of privilege and ELITE thinking to state CI are not controversial in the Deaf community.  I’m sorry to be so direct with you Mr. Tucker but seriously your saying that Cochlear Implants are not controversial today is REALLY misinformed and now dont you see how the media used your quote to frame the CI as the MIRACLE and LIFE SAVER.  See See.  As in read the FULL article and how they played ya.

It is not controversial to me that some folks have it and some folks dont but it it it the DEVICE, the SYSTEM, the PRESSURE, the PLAN, the AGENDA of CIs is EXTREMELY controversial.

Denial aint helpful Mr. Tucker. And yes im mad.  im working very hard to EXPOSE the truth about CIs and it is frustrating to see that the only time we learn about the FAILINGS of Cochlear Implants is when it affects STOCKS and not when it AFFECT L-I-V-E-S.  And it shouldnt take a PhD or a Dr. to know that when the CI fail there is a life or two attached to IT – so we should be asking why oh why can u only learn about the recalls via the BUSINESS pages and not the FRONT pages.  and why are the FRONT pages just articles about the MIRACLES of cochlear implants hmmmmmmm??????

Why are the “human interest” sections and the “health” sections filled with such unhealthy bull#hit about the great salvation called the cochlear implant and why are good folks like Mr. Tucker being quoted as if nothing is rotten in Denmark?

Havent you seen the FDA fine to Advanced Bionics and the Dept of Justice fine to Cochlear Americas – hmmm why are those not mentioned by YOU or ANYONE in that article above?  And the recalls – the recalls are bringing these companies to their monetary knees for some temporary set backs while they fiddle with their wares and figure out how to do a big ole tax write off and NONE of you know about it????

geez im appalled!

Cochlear Implants are UTTERLY controversial WHEN they come with AVT (Auditory Verbal Therapy) or whatever they wanna spin and call it this week

There is also the important matter that we all LOVE to ignore and pretend does not exist.  The #hit.

here it is – REJECTION

W/ CI (but they never show this in the glossy brochures or the splashy dvds promotional kits that they send home to folks) – with CI comes REJECTION

– folks or families who have chosen CI at times feel rejected by folks who oppose CIs

– folks or families who do not choose CI at times feel rejected by folks who choose CIs

Its divide and conquer time folks – EVEN within families this #hit is breaking down.

Yep – that there is a truth folks.  CIs split up and divide us.

IE they are CONTROVERSIAL and they are not just simply a “tool” – if they were just a “tool” they wouldnt be billed as a miracle and the select chosen Deaf folk or 2 who have CIs would not raise to the top of the propaganda chain and get tooted on lecture routes and billed as hybrid cyborgs (by their very own selves) only to be dropped once the latest and greatest new gadget comes tooting along.

Dont even get me started at how badly the parents are played and propped up and then dropped like hot potatoes when sometime fails or goes awry.

Now soon i hope to put up a bunch of links for u to come see see some truths about CIs, there are plenty more already here at the People of the Eye (POTE) blogsite – just put in cochlear implants in the search box and u will get more. (hopefully ill make a separate entry and list the massive links folks keep sending me or that keep crossing my path – the dots r there folks – ya just gotta open ur eyes and connect them but most of it is already out there – u just gotta click google instead of only using ur only frame of reference – that which is in front of u.  Gotta look at the BIG picture folks as in – AVT+CI is a global campaign against natural sign language and human rights which is wrong!)

But to summarize:  The Truths about Cochlear Implants

1. they are controversial

2. they have divided up many a families and even friendships

3. they are complicated and cause complications

– fact – they have contributed to Deaths

– fact – they have contributed to facial paralysis and disfigurements

– fact – there are complications that may be associated with CI and the surgery and anesthesia

headaches, nausea,tinnitus, dizziness, language delay, learning disability

– fact – they have failed hot and they have failed cold and they have caused NUMEROUS recalls

– fact – their companies have been fined by the FDA and by the Dept of Justice and a court in Denver, co.

– UNKNOWN – long term impact of aggressively EARLY implanting of infants ?

FDA approves implanting at 2 years 12 month old and up.  THOUSANDS of children have been implanted at 2 years 12 month and up but by middle school we are not seeing a HUGE jump in the literacy abilities of Deaf children with CIs

Infants as young as 5 month old have had bilateral implants in the US despite of the FDA 2 year old recommendation.  (note; Infant as young as 3 month old implanted in Australia in 2006 – i can not find any follow up info on this infant today 5 years later – hmmm)

– UNKNOWN impact of CIs on children who have autism.  Since the push now is for implanting EARLY and since diagnosis for autism is often later than implanting it is unclear and unknown what impact CI stimulation might have on a child with autism of which auditory stimulation is often stressful and overwhelming.

– UNKNOWN impact of remote controlled cochlear implants by parents, teachers, and specialists on child’s autonomy and bodily integrity not to mention – what if its hurting them???? (sometimes CIs do cause discomfort and shock folks)

– UNKNOWN impact of 100% implantable cochlear implants.  presently there are 2 parts – external processor and internal chip so if something goes wrong with the programming or external part it aint a huge biggie and no risk to hurting the child but for the internal part going bad – well just look at the Advanced Bionics recall for the failing hot that could lead to neural damage or the Cochlear Limited and past Advanced Bionics recall for failing cold due to moisture getting in the chip.  if its a 100% implantable – kids can not choose when to have it turned on or off and if any part of it breaks down then the kid has to go into the shop WITH IT.

– UNKNOWN – there are TONS more and we will only have the full story when more whistle blowers come forward and in the mean time the companies and NEW companies are sprouting up for the stem cell, genetics (0y people who ran to get tested at Gallaudet and various places – do u know u r now tagged and ur genes r part of a repository and up for sale to the highest bidder and the MAIN purpose in having collected ur DNA is not to propagate the race – OY u folks WAKE UP!), and the pill.  Yep they working on a pill folks.

FACT – the same day that Cochlear Limited announced its WORLD WIDE recall of its CI 500 range implants for stopping dead in their tracks, Advanced Bionics announced that the FDA had re-approved its Hi-Res 9K cochlear implant after it was recalled for failing HOT and Med-El announced the release of the SMALLEST CI to-date.  Hmmmm

And pls  know this – i am not a paranoid chappy.  I really dont want to see this – i dont like seeing all the BAD connections im seeing connecting the dots with the EHDI system and the hearing detection devices COMPANIES that actually profit and act as feeders to the system of fixing ie “step right in here to the fixer upper machine – AVT+CIs K I S S I N G – first comes listening then comes talking then comes? lousy literacy skills STILL STILL – it is not a cure folks just a racket to line their jackets with – ask any of the kids who grew up with CIs who may or may not be able to hear and/or speak.  It works… KINDA, SOMETIMES, a WEE BIT but it is NOT a cure.  They are still Deaf – we should not forget that and the government having been PUNKED is gonna say – excuse me are you saying u convinced us to cover $60,000 CI then convinced us u needed a 2nd $60,000 implant and would need the hottest and the greatest to come down the pike 4 years later X2 and again 4 years later X 2 and ud still need CART, interpreters, and notetakers etc and now you are graduated and the CI companies do not want to hire you full time as their spokesperson cuz they have a much prettier talker they are grooming so now you need SSI hmmmmm and crud.

Cake and eat it too is just gonna make ya fat folks – not happy and meanwhile…

the fix it up chappies are VERY happy cuz they in cohoots with the “specialists” and “professionals” and the CDC and the EHDI and they will push all these kids into the mainstream and then the lawyers will prowl around for lawsuits re: schools that passed Deaf kids who are functionally illiterate when they HAD normal intelligence to begin with

ahhhh this is why the GOOD drs say language deprivation is a crime against humanity and THIS, Supt. tucker, is why cochlear implants are IN FACT controversial

if u got misquoted – my apologies and let me know so we can note the correction.  If u got quoted correctly but u can see the truths in what i am singing – thank you.  We need folks to STAND for the truth because that is the best strategy for social change.  anything short of it is just band aids and delaying the inevitable – oppression.  and that ain’t cool.  Child First does not have a hope and a prayer because the SYSTEMS are pushing FULL throttle EARLY EARLY EARLY bilateral implanting + AVT.

there is more Mr. Tucker et al – there is way more

Wake up would ya?  and know i love ya.  i aint really met u but i did see u at the NAD conference a million moons ago where u gave a presentation on “COMMUNICATION ABUSE” in which you clearly and directly and boldly and truthfully named Oralism (oral / aural only) as communication abuse and it lit a fire in the room – folks were lined up around the full room to ask questions and share and one man came forward and was shaking and crying and talked of the estrangement from his family at the hands of Oralism.  It was POWerful because it is the TRUTH.

I know folks who can hear and talk a plenty with CIs who do NOT go home for the holidays Mr. Tucker

pls return to the truth

we need you!



NOTE:  My apologies for addressing Supt Tucker as a Dr.  Thank you to Sandra in the comments for correcting me and alerting me to my error.

Da good and da bad

Da Good and Da Bad

[and no dont ask me why i type like a teenager – cuz it should be obvious – i gotta have some fun while on this truth campaign dont i.  it cant be all heavy politics and proper verb agreements and dotted Is and crossed Ts and because im a major fan of “Their Eyes Were Watching God” by Zora Neale Hurston – its one of me all time FAVORITE books.  I was spelling on it with me Z yesterday – getting all misty eyed over Tea Cakes and his death and life and the last lines about throwing open the window and calling in her soul to come see.  its a GRAND book largely because of the LANGUAGE and the PEOPLE.  Real – even though its fiction so relax over my typing folks – u know i just do it to make me happy and cuz some of ya should not be so uptight on trying to PROVE to Hearing folks that Deaf folks can use proper English.  Mine is better that alot folks.  I do this cuz i can and so can u.  and this is a blog folks – not an “article.”)

So Da Good as in Its Good to be Deaf

[AS in Deaf folks hit da BIG time and become visible in Popular Culture! ]

Pete Seeger at 92 supporting Occupy Wallstreet in NYC

Pete Seeger, of “If I Had a Hammer” and “Where have all the flowers gone” fame was a walking for Occupy Wallstreet. I know it aint got a direct Deaf connection but since we are all connected – it does folks it totally does.  And if u dont think what has been going on on wallstreet affects you well i got some swamp land in FLA and some specially packaged water u might be interested in buying

It connected – we all is connected folks.  and most likely at Pete’s age he may have some Deafhood groove a going cuz with age comes Deaf gain and im sure he underSTANDS Deaf folks as the Clearwater festivals that he supported for all these years was (and i hope still is) super cool about having interpreters etc.  He is an equality for all kinda guy

And the below is about the hammer we done are getting going – the Truth – we r putting the truths out there for all to see – IT’s DANDY to be DEAF.  And this disseminating of the truth is gonna make it a wee bit harder for the propagandists who keep trying to paint
deaf as death (by the way i just learned that in Dutch the words for “deaf” and “death” also sound the same – coincidence????  this is why we need a new word eventually folks to – it will aid in changing our own and the public’s perception – but it should be created in universal sign first with nothing to do with the ear or the mouth)

so KUDOS to Pete for keepin’ on – and thank ya for giving me HOPE and joy and inspiration

i hope i will still do what i need to do do when im ninety-two too!

Wonderstruck by by Brian Selznick

Wonderstruck – its a GRAND book.  Buy it – buy it now and guess why the author done made it?  He has a partially Deaf brother so he done seen things and cuz he watched the documentary “Through Deaf Eyes” and it affected him.  YA HOO! the power of media

(I cant tell you how many folks told me that NTD on Tv affected them or how the DPN Gallaudet protest of 1988 on TV affected them.  And this is why AG Bell does so protest Deaf representation in the media.  it is too dang beautiful and they no want “them” (the public to see and know this just how beautiful and precious the scourge people are)  But thankfully cuz good Deaf folks (including their own members and DBC, NAD and AFA said yo AG Bell that Pepsi letter is bull#hit and bonkers – the AG Bell has been silent with the proliferation of Positive representation of Deaf ASL folks in the media – HA.  u is so busted AG Bell and AVT.  Nothing u can do to make ur speciality look classy and cool so u go for the “MIRACLE bull#hit” – so sad)

To learn more about WONDERSTRUCK – the storyline, the book and the author (and to see all the many many illustrations in his book) see this video (media – wow have i told u how much i love positive media?)

Deaf Jam by Judy Lieff

Deaf Jam on The Independent Lens of PBS – ya hoo.  i havent seen it yet but from me friend who had a preview of it – she said its GOOD.  It has ASL poetry / jamming and set in NYC.  Features students from Lexington – the school that taught me the most as a newbie teacher.  So ya hoo – me looking forward to it.

See Trailer, clips and Deaf History info

Check listing for when Deaf Jam will air in your area

The Hammer by Oren Kaplan

The Hammer – an independent film about Matt Hamill – professional wrestler.  I havent seen this film yet either but will soon.  Its getting GREAT reviews and looks like it has done a breakthrough so that is super cool.  Fact that it has a large Deaf cast and is committed to showing Deaf folks in a favorable light makes me happy.  (and of course there is the Rochester connection so SWEET!)

Check the listing for where to order a ticket to a theater near you

Versa Effect by Mark Wood

this is the SIXTH feature film by ASL Films so that is very significant.  ASL Films have been dedicated to making films in American Sign Language with subtitles for certain screenings.  I missed when Versa Effect was in town cuz i was at American University that weekend but from the folks who saw it they said it was one of Mark Wood’s best films to date.  Most said its a imitation of some other “switcharo” films by Hollywood.  That is pretty common for a disenfranchised group to imitate what is popular in popular culture in order to break through but usually the result is that it just appeals to the folks within their group because its by their cultural group but not necessarily ABOUT their cultural group.  The ABOUT is pretty hot so i hope some day ASL Films will work its way to making a narrative film that represents the Deaf experience instead of all the twisty turny over the top storylines it is prone to.  Of, By, and For they got down pat –  now how to do the ABOUT.  I think u can Mark Wood – it totally think u can – ya just need a script writer who knows how to tap into the uniqueness and universalism that make great visual storytelling. I nominate David Kurs.  Smile.  I know i know – u didnt ask me but there it is.

see for info on the film Versa Effect and to find showtimes near you.

Ingelore by Frank Stiefel

Ingelore is an extraordinary documentary made by her son Frank Stiefel. Ingelore was a Jewish Deaf German girl during the Nazi era who was brutally attacked and fortunately was able to make her way to the U.S. in 1940.  All the people i know who have seen the work, which aired on HBO on mother’s day and has been screened all over the world, use a common word to describe it – “POWERFUL.”

The trailer for the film can be seen at and more information about the film at

Bravo’s A Work of Art w/ Leon Lim

Leon Lim, Deaf artist from Malaysia, is on Bravo’s 2nd season of A Work of Art where 14 artists compete to be chosen for a solo show at the Brooklyn Museum and a cash prize of $100,000.  Leon, an alumnus of RIT, is a very unique guy and a versatile artist so i hope he keeps from getting cut. A Work of Art airs every Wed night at 9 pm EST on Bravo.

To view video of Leon from the show go to:

Don't let the pix scare you. he is a total sweetheart - as is his band - Brandon (vocals) and Weirdness (VJ)


Alwright i will admit im a fan.  Gosh and gush!  Smile nah i aint THAT bad.  I have seen Signmark perform live at NTID/RIT and RSD and seen Signmark present.  Admirable – just simply admirable.  Got heart and soul and seems mighty humble.  That is champ.  Im just incredibly glad Signmark is out there and exists and is doing good.  I would not be all rah rah about their work if it did not have some really important lyrics – affirmation and resistance both.

Furthermore at the RSD gig – i was shocked.  I thought it was gonna be a presentation with maybe a few performances thrown in and maybe a video shown or two but nope it was a performance FULL THROTTLE.  We were given balloons upon entrance for vibrations.  Blue Balloons.  Ah the color BLUE for blue skies!  Signmark even raps about the Deaf Man’s Blues, which is about audism not about woe is me i cant hear the birds sing. He also invited up some back up signers – they were super cute and one boy who knew all the lyrics was hopping all over the stage performing too – proud to the hilt to be…. DEAF.  Mighty fine and even a wee-est thing with red curls galore made her way up to the main stage and was showing off her hands too.  It was cute.  We were ALL GUSHING.  What’s more by the last set of sign songs they have EVERYONE up on their feet.  EVERYONE even the oldest Hearing board members were moving their feet and waving their hands.  I was totally loving watching folks in the audience.  One older Deaf man in a suit was hugging his balloon and slowly swaying back and forth while bobbing his head up and down.  so i thought – Well who has the power to do this?  Reach YOUNG YOUNG wee things to much much OLDER folks.  Who has the power to do this?  Get Deaf (profoundly and profusely, semi- and partially, newly and with age Deaf folks) and Hearing folks to participate.  Every BODY!

it just gave me joy.  [remember folks resistance of oppression is the secret to possessing joy]

i think the Deaf world, allies, and even folks that have never even encountered Deaf folks yet are hunger to be engaged and active.  To participate.  At least that is what i have seen from Peter Cook and Kenny Lerner’s work and now with Signmark and the popularity of some of these films and books etc

I really love alot of Signmark songs – i wont lie to ya cuz they are very Deaf centered and he lets his core out to play for all to see.  I even did some signing of the choirs from my seat in the back “My papa told me it would never be easy it would never be easy… My moma told me…” and “Whatcha doing over there – there’s a party over here… don’t let it stick to me.  You haters dont mean #hit to me” (i confess that i have played that video many a times to save me and forge me forward) – “I STAND Tall, Proud back against the wall” “Actions speak louder than words, louder than words..” “Let your SOUL be your speaker box…” but the most moving one is “The Letter”


This is very true – i had read about the horrific kidnapping and murder of Emma Louise Agnew of New Zealand, i was devastated.  When i learned of her murder’s life and i learned of hers and her Deaf family’s – my heart really tore and grieved so later to see her memorialized in this sign song by Signmark – it touched me deeply.


See video about Signmark’s upcoming US Tour

Info on the Signmark and his band at

(added) Deaf Folks on TV

i’m not a fan of regular TV programming and i dont generally follow it but i know lots of other folks do so ive added some items below

Gallaudet on MTVU

Quiet Campus premieres on October 24 at 12pm ET

ABC Switched at Birth

Big Bang Theory episode

Nancy Rourke

Mask of Benevolence by Nancy Rourke

Viva De’VIA thanks to Nancy Rourke.  De’VIA stands for Deaf View / Image Art and was coined in 1989 by a group of Deaf artists committed to creating and examining artworks about the Deaf experience.  Nancy Rourke is the most prolific artist committed to De’VIA presently.  We have lots of grand ones – Dr. Betty G. Miller, the mother there of of De’VIA, Chuck Baird, the champion of De’VIA, Susan Dupor, the petite warrior, Ann Silver, the pop artist princess, and many more but Nancy Rourke has been the busiest lately and im so thrilled i could cry.  So she has a NEW video out ILLUMINATING her work – ya gotta watch it folks cuz she adds some signifiers in the video to help illustrate things in her work and its priceless – simply priceless as is she. What she does with the Dandelion oe in the video gets me all misty eyed.

Nancy Rourke and Warren Miller have a show at the Dyer Arts Center at NTID Nov 2-Dec 16.  Ya hoo!

Rochester is grand folks – yesterday i went to get coffee and the person behind the counter is signing away to a Deaf customer – another person is at the cash register for me – i sign.  She does pretty fine too.  then i go next store to the pizza place and the cashier there signs everything down to the last cent and im like DANG its GOOD TO BE DEAF.  Then just now I see an former co-worker out walking his dog and i stop to say howdy (thinking now way he will remember sign  – it was like 15 years ago he retired) and bang he is lifting his hands in the cold air signing away.  We chat – im so happy to see him.  He fumbles a bit here and there with recalling the hand-talk and is apologetic and i say “you are beautiful.  no worries”  he smiles.

Life is GOOD

Well now that ive reported on some of the latest and greatest good stuff to cross my path – ive decided not to report on the BAD cuz we all know the bad and some of you are determined to IGNORE the bad, some of you are determined to contribute to the bad (in what u do and what u fail to do) and some of you are truth seekers and STAND and are GRAND so ill just cover some of that stuff in the next blog entry.

The Butterfly Effect (Ryan Commerson and Alison Aubrecht) have a great series going re: Transgressing the Object – which is a grand use of media to examine the unexamined – the disabling of the Deaf via deaf education – see the latest ASL entry – im not completely sure where they are going with this but i suspect its right to the doorstep of how the SYSTEMS condition Deaf folks into being disenfranchised so that the whole industries that have risen up around CURING the Deaf can sustain and glorify  themselves (ie the specialists and professions that say it is better to hear and/or behave as hearing folks do – when in fact that is not TRUE)

Ryan and Alison’s work there is good and important and illuminating on the BAD

but for now ill leave us in this happy place while i skip to the beat of Signmark’s “Actions speak louder than words, louder than words” and i hopefully take a trip to the grand canyon of the East (yes yes i know we r totally lame to even call it that but heye we gotta take what we get and i can still enjoy despite cuz even if it is small in scale – its lovely and Fall and gorgeous)


Patti Durr

PS: Geez its good to be Deaf – i have no idea why some folks r trying to “CURE” us.

Well I’ve got a hammer

And I’ve got a bell

And I’ve got a song

All over this land

I’ts the hammer of justice

It’s the bell of freedom

It’s the song about love between my brothers and my sisters

All over this land

~ from Pete Seeger’s If I had a hammer


Drs and do no harm – HA!

Drs do no harm – HA! ie Imperialism of the EAR era / error

There is a lot of ruckus about Dr. Dornan’s quote on Deaf folks comparing them to a scourge like polio and also saying we can consign deafness to history etc

Dr. Dornan’s claims that she was misquoted and misunderstood but her previous speeches, awards, and actions speak volumes.  She has a proven track record of ushering in a death to being Deaf. (see some links below)

Iffffffffffffffffffffff she truly just means she wants to eradicate the adverse impact of being Deaf from children’s lives as she is currently spinning then she would NOT be one of the chief propagators of Oral / Aural ONLYism in Australia.  She would NOT advocate AGAINST the use of a natural sign language and she would not push the false opiate of CI+AVT = equality because it DOES NOT.

So if she truly wanted to ensure that Deaf children did not suffer as a result of being Deaf::

1. she would ensure that they had access to a fully natural and accessible language 0 – 3 and give them English too

3. she would fight against AUDISM instead of promote it

Black folks were not denied the right to sit on the front of the bus due to their abilities

Women were not denied the right to vote due to their abilities

Gay folks are not denied the right to marry because of their abilities

Deaf folks are not denied the right to a natural sign language because of their abilities

all of these DENIALS to equality are due to prejudices and bigotry so if Dr. Dornan Really wants to HELP Deaf folks she should be combating the prejudices and falsehoods that say it is better to be hearing and/or behave as hearing folks do than to be Deaf cuz that simply is NOT true

it is not better to be White even though Whites receive better treatment

it is not better to be male even though males receive better treatment

it is not better to be heterosexual even though heterosexuals receive better treatment

it IS better to be treated equally and that is what Dr. Dornan should be advocating for and that is when she should be getting awards – not when she is doing the “do no harm” duty backwards

cuz Oralism has harmed a bad-n-plenty and Oralism and Audism are her specility.  Four major international bodies have said DO NOT deprive Deaf children of sign language – HELLO!

see afa-5 international bodies re- sl rights(1)

Deceit is not sweet Dr. Dornan

An apple of truth keeps the bad doctors away.  (yes i know i know she aint a medical doctor she just is a PhD with all that AVT stuff lapped on)  And there is the other MEGA doctor of australia (a real MD in the treatment of diseases like the scourge of the Deaf) – Dr. Graeme Clark.  Holy crud.  Just look at his stock options

dont cry for her folks (or even him – his company COCHLEAR LIMITED will just pull out the “goodwill impairment” to help them recoup and bounce back from their MEGA recall of their CI 500 range implants for failing cold)  – They got a good profit margin and stock options and government handouts to push for the 2nd wave of Oralism

NOTE: COCHLEAR LIMITED is not limited – it is WORLD wide and they have not been shy about their ambitions of making sure EVERY Deaf child has Cochlear implants and uses oral / aural only.

And im sure if we check the dots we will see stem cells and genetics and pills and shots tracing their fingertips as well.

with friends like these – who needs enemies

some quotes from the Dr. Dornan:

“A functionally deaf child needs to learn about the world through vision whereas a functionally hard of hearing child learns everything about the world through hearing and fits very nicely in a hearing society and becomes a very strong contributor to that society and therefore is very economically sound.

“Hearing loss, as we know, is the most common disability in newborn babies, worldwide, and it’s often diagnosed too late for optimal treatment. And in addition to this sad fact, there are presently only enough trained, uh, listening and speaking professionals to effectively treat 8% of all the children and adults, uh, worldwide with hearing loss. The good news is, today we stand where polio was 20 years ago. Through a combination of newborn hearing screening and most important point, the, our wonderful cochlear implants and digital hearing aids and early auditory verbal intervention we now have the potential to decimate the very serious consequences of hearing loss globally.”  In this transcript she talks of China and Russia etc Imperialism of the EAR era / error

they also discuss their journey for making Deaf folks into artificial people of the ears and mouths rather than the eyes and the hands


they have not been shy about it folks – its just that most of us have been averting our eyes.  its too big its too bad – we no wanna see see and we no wanna do do

and folks it is NO coincidence that they r ramping up this cultural and linguistic genocidal push just at a time when the world is saying – diversity its a good thing (diversity as in biodiversity, linguistic diversity, cultural diversity) and its no coincidence that they are ramping this up at a time when Deaf Natural signing folks are hot and sexy and cool and popular and hitting the mainstream media big time and its no coincidence they are ramping this up under the falsehood that it will save folks money down the line during a time of economic crisis – ahhhh social darwinism and eugenics.  Imperialism, nationalism, and militarism they got – and those are the CHIEF ingredients for conquest and domination and COLONIZATION.  gasp i used the C word folks

no worry – its the truth and they must be sung.  Some folks will be stung.  some folks will say – HEY i want my CI and i love to listen to music and i like to talk and u can not stop me to which i will say gently and lovingly and LOUDLY for the 15th MILLIONTH time

1. it is not about u – it is perfectly fine with me if you want CIs, music and talking

2. it is about THEM saying folks MUST have those things to FUNCTION and CONTRIBUTE to society because:

a. it is false

b. it is cruel

3. it is about THEM saying that folks can not have ASL or AUSLAN or eye-music or signing (see Hear and Say and AVT/LSL Extremism)

That there is the problem – that THEY, the systems, exclude

Now to all my important and beloved friends – if you can not stand up against folks and systems who are doing this CRAP all over the planet do not ever dare to complain to me about the use of blue tape, about the wording of a petition, the height of a letter, the spelling of a word, about cost of batteries, about the lack of captioning

This is huge folks and you NO LONGER HAVE ANY EXCUSE TO DO NOTHING!

and yes, i am mad at you my beloved community.  I am mad at how quick u all are to engage in the most degrading and disgusting cesspool blogsphere bull#hit when i personally know children who have had THREE ci surgeries cuz the things did not WORK!

yes i am mad at u folks for vlogging more about a bloody football game than u do about the TRUTH

yes i am mad at u for yakking and wagging the dog here there and EVERYWHERE

yes i am mad at u for continually reaching out and grabbing the closest thing near u to pull down and pick apart and dissect while Dr. Dornan has been laying the ground works for a death to the Deaf dance

yes i dont understand how i can have so many readers who do not appear to be doers

yes i am appalled to see folks DEFEND her

yes i am also dreading finding out about this FLA woman that someone has put a bunch of links to in my previous blog entry because when i SEE then i must do- boo.  just when i wanted a rest.  Thankfully i got me boots on.

so to all my pals and acquaintances – Wake the #uck up!

And pls know i aint mad at everybody.  Some of you are mighty fine and brave – u go places i no wanna go and u take me there too.  Thank u

Pls also know that i LOVE ya all.  I truly do.  I know know know waking up is hard to do.  this is true but wake we must.  and STAND for which is right, good, true and just is a must too.

For all of those of you who do DO- i thank you.  for all of those of you who are blind and married to b.s., i will love ya from afar.  For all for you with stars upon thars and those without, you are wonderful.  for all of those of you who are fence sitting – i beseech upon you to do the right thing.

The time is now

“won’t you help me sing, these songs of freedom….”

other important links below

1. link to CODA Australia 2010 video (Auslan & English) contending Dimity Dornan “Hear and Say” organization being granted $4 million dollars from the Australia govt when it practice and promotes language bigotry and human rights violations (thanks shawn for the link)

2. link to the Deaf Bilingual Coalition (DBC) Letter to the Telstra Award organizers calling for Dornan’s award to be rescinded

3. World Federation of the Deaf and Deaf Australia’s letter calling for a public apology from Dornan for her inflamatory remarks

ADDED: the greatest forms of discrimination / oppression facing Deaf folks world wide all start with E

Ethnicity (this includes language rights)



We r not alone folks – many other groups (races, ethnic, gender, sexual orientation, differently abled, etc groups have also faced discrimination but as far as i know Deaf folks are the ONLY group on the planet that is REGULARLY and SYSTEMATICALLY deprived of a fully natural and accessible language. 

And that is the plague we should be ushering in a death of

Boot up folks!

Boot Up for the Media Hype B.S.

Boot Up for the Media Hype B.S.

Basic summary of what i signed is below the video box here with some extras and some extra links to some import info at bottom

simple questions –
1. are we Deaf folks a Scourge?
2. is it true that folks who are moderately to severely Deaf have NEVER heard the sound of their own voice and can not understand others’ speech?

(NOTE: Sarah C of viral video fame grew up with hearing aids)

Well, this is what the media has been spreading around from false prophets. Woman in Australia (Dimity Dornan) says Deaf is like polio – a highly contagious illness. Kudos to the Australia Deaf folks and the WFD taking a stand against this b.s.

And a young woman cries over a new type of implant Envoy Esteem, which we do not know how well it will work over time as its 100% implantable and what happens if a part breaks or the battery dies? It is for folks who are moderate to severe Deaf and they are capable of hearing speech and making speech. She just was able to hear herself differently via the new implant – it was not the FIRST time she ever heard and PRESTO she is a hearing and speaking person for the FIRST time within minutes.

ADDED: ABC’s “Today” and “Ellen” and the 8 million viewers at youtube – ya got a wee bit punked!  by the headlines “29 years old and hearing myself for the 1st time!”

but heye – there is a first time for everything aint there.  For those of us in the Deaf-world – we have seen this over-sensationalism before.

Envoy – u might want to ensure u got some small print there that says “not the miracle cure as misrepresented in the viral video” cuz otherwise u gonna have alot of disgruntled customers and the FDA is gonna wonder why u r covering Sarah’s 2 implants and allowing her to claim that she never heard her voice due to being Deaf since birth when in fact the Envoy Esteem is only for moderate to severe and not profoundly Deaf folks

and Telstra Award ya got a bit punked into rewarding a woman who has made it her business to say “we can cosign deafness to history” – ie annihilate a people, a culture, and a language to oblivion – like …. polio??? huh and HELLO.

This we too have seen before – see

Dr. Douglas Baynton’s book “Forbidden Signs: American Culture and the Campaign Against American Sign Language” or

Branson and Miller’s “Damned for Their Difference: The Cultural Construction of Deaf People as Disabled” or

Horst Biesold’s “Crying Hands: Eugenics and Deaf People in Nazi Germany” or

Edwin Black’s “War Against the Weak: It Began on Long Island and Ended at Auswitz” or

Dr. Harlan Lane’s “Mask of Benevolence: Disabling the Deaf Community” or

Lane, Pillard, Hedberg’s “People of the Eye: Deafnicity or Ancestry” or….

just read some nutters nothingness in some blog somewhere and ease ur conscience that its a good thing to make Deaf dead.

Knowledge is power folks – “Take a look, its in a book….”

OY what b.s. they spin and sputter


1. link to CODA Australia 2010 video (Auslan & English) contending Dimity Dornan “Hear Say” organization being granted $4 million dollars from the Australia govt when it practice and promotes language bigotry and human rights violations (thanks shawn for the link)


2. link to the Deaf Bilingual Coalition (DBC) Letter to the Telstra Award organizers calling for Dornan’s award to be rescinded

3. World Federation of the Deaf and Deaf Australia’s letter calling for a public apology from Dornan for her inflamatory remarks

Boot up folks!

Got D for Dandy and for Deaf?

D is fo Deaf by De'VIA artist - Nancy Rourke

Got D for Dandy and for Deaf?



Since most of us [Deaf, Deaf of Deaf, partially Deaf, late Deaf, CoDas, parents of Deaf children, spouses of Deaf folks, siblings of Deaf folks, teachers of Deaf folks, interpreters of Deaf folks, foreigners who have experienced linguisims, other cultural groups who have experienced racism, sexism, etc, and allies] KNOW, we KNOW its Dandy to be Deaf and making Deaf folks never more as in deadending being Deaf is NOT cool and the push to change Deaf to dead is not acceptable, we all r gonna let our fingers do the talking.

So give me a D if u believe its ok to be Deaf and Deaf is better than dead.

Antonia's People of the Eye - Big D

patti's D-Heart

D for Dear Destinee, our granddaughter D for Deaf D for Dandy F for DeaF not DeaD

Activist, Shawn Elfink, reflects on how being D is handy

A big ole D for the People of the handEYE

Unless … last vs first letter

Unless we care more for the last letter than the height of the first…

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.

~ The Lorax

Queen of Deaf Hearts by Nancy Rourke see site for full description of the artwork

ahh the drama over the height of a D

and Ds upon thars or not

havent we done done this dysfunctional dance before?

hmmmm wonder why its cropped up again folks

and consider the source and why bother – they have no power, influence, credibility or truths

its OK to be Deaf (dont matter if u r profoundly or partially or a wee bit) it is dandy and handy

The oppression and denial that often comes with it is less than desirable though, folks and this is why we STAND against the systems that promote audism

so give me a big D if u pls – i got a tweet up

with this pix and if u wanna share urs just click reply and upload ur pix and if i get a few ill put them all here to share if u desire.  If u dont no worries at all.

It’s good to be D folks.

So we need not be squabbling over the height of one letter, eh?

It is futile and fruitless when the last letter is really the issue

is it to be F or D?

DeaF or DeaD  

DeaF as in alive, awake, aware, and ACTIVE or Dead as in no more and/or a Death of the Spirit (see MLK, Jr speech)

That is the question, my friends and what you do and

what you fail to do will determine the answer.

Some folks got being DEAF in the cross-hairs marked for eradicate, mate.  Whatcha gonna do do?

“and all that the Lorax left here in this mess was a small pile of rocks with one word
UNLESS” ~ The Once-ler

Quotes from Dr. Suess’ “The Lorax”

and this is a VERY old vlog entry (July 2010) that spoke to a similar theme – What’s It Gonna Be Deaf or Dead

PS: SIGNMARK rocked the house at RSD last night.  Filled me with joy and awe.  and AW, all the wee things up on stage grooving with him and even a tiny little red head took center stage and by the end of the evening everyBODY (Deaf and Hearing alike) was on their feet moving and grooving – even the oldest Board members.  ahhh to be INDEPENDENT.

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