toss the maniacal monkey & creepy clowns

we have been examining the unexamined at the People of the Eye place.

A while back we did the series on the Right to be …. Deaf that exposed how Deaf babes to be are not wanted (see genetic testing and tossing) and once they arrive they are not welcomed (see Universal New Born Screening ie eugenics era 2.0)

"...Push the Red Button" by Susan Dupor  Description: Painting of a stuffed monkey with stripped red and white paints, yellow vest, and thimbles.  Blank staring glass eyes, sitting on a wooden shelf with the edge of a shadow showing.  Background and frame painted institutional green with many tiny nails holes pounded in to represent an audiology lab sound proofing.

“…Push the Red Button” by Susan Dupor Description: Painting of a stuffed monkey with stripped red and white paints, yellow vest, and thimbles. Blank staring glass eyes, sitting on a wooden shelf with the edge of a shadow showing. Background and frame painted institutional green with many tiny nails holes pounded in to represent an audiology lab sound proofing.

and today we discuss the Maniacal Monkey, Terrifying Teddies, and Creepy Clowns in the audiology testing lab.

Many moons ago i was reading a gallery catalog listing from a De’VIA exhibit Brenda Schertz had organized for one of the Deaf Studies conferences and i saw a listing for Susan Dupor’s … Push the Red Button artwork and i was like I MUST HAVE IT.

Yes i hadn’t even seen the work but i knew sight unseen that it was something i would recognize – why? cuz i have been to the audiology lab – in fact it is the first place i remember being pressured not to be ME.  The first place i remember fibbing.  The first place i remember being pressured to conform to someone else’s norm.

So when Susan Dupor came to town many moons ago to present – i asked her “… Push the Red Button” is it sold?  Nope she said

to which i replied – its mine.  i must have it.  SOLD.

And since that time its been hanging out with me and often – very often – someone will take notice of it.  Once a graduate student from Thailand kept having her eyes pulled away from the paper she was reading up to the “…Push the Red Button” and then she said

“what is that about?”

So i said what i normally say to folks

“What do u think?”

and she said “well back home in Thailand when i would have to go to the audiology lab for my hearing test there was always this monkey staring at me.  He look-same THAT-one”and i thought wow a universal experience with a universally creepy mascot monkey.
NOT COOL audiologists around the globe


cease and desist with the maniacal monkeys, creepy clowns, and terrifying teddies.

I can not tell u how many folks see the “…Push the Red Button” and go – “ohhh not cool.  i remember that dude.  haunted my dream-word, gave me nightmares”

And they add to the list to the freaky menagerie.  Monkeys, clowns, and bears – OH NO!

From the monkey (that actually was adopted by Advance Bionics – see Bionic Buddy.  There was even an inflatable giant size monkey mascot at an ICED congress before they repealed and regretted the ICED 1880 resolutions of oral / aural only and issued the just, right and good ICED 2010 New Era Agreement and Accord of the Future).

Monkeys – REALLY.

Ya think all Deaf children are monkey see monkey do folks?  We know operant and classical conditioning are a huge part of  audiological and speech pathology but seriously – ya all should LISTEN to your clientele.

Toss the terrifying teddies, creepy clowns, and maniacal monkeys.

Yes we see you too COCHLEAR LTD – with your implanted stuffed Koala bears.

The younger generation of survivors of the audiology lab testing tell me that some of these freaky creatures have eyes that light up and frighteningly glow when they, the child, the subject/object, pushed the red button or raised their hands correctly.  Instead of being an incentive for guessing / performing correctly – for many children it has been a fear factor.  Others have told me of how the animal, prop, visual reward-system object is concealed in a black box and if they pushed the red button correctly the box would light up and the creature or clown would be illuminated.

All of them say “I HATED THAT THING.”


so psssstttt – audiologist folks – you might want to have a survivor who is not ga ga reward-punishment BF Skinner boxes be a consultant and im sure most of them will tell ya – toss the freaky creatures.

In fact a few years ago when Ruthie and i toured the Cochlear Americas’ headquarter in Colorado – after they had brought us past their cubicle farms for tons of folks calling parents, patients, doctors and insurance companies to get CIs covered by the government and raving about remote controlled features of CI, they took us into a super size audiology lab and i felt a bit of a shudder creep down my spine.  And then i said – “so it seems you dont have any of those freaky monkeys in here?” to which ruthie added “or koala bears – COCHLEAR LTD is Australia based” and i was like yep yep right.  and then the Gallaudet graduated interpreter turned audiologist turned implant sales person interpreted to the Cochlear Americas business rep who then said “oh no, we don’t have that kind of thing” but when we went down the hall and saw an older Deaf woman getting tested on her 2nd implant and we mentioned to the audiologist there we were surprised to see no stuffed bears etc she said –

“oh we have them – in the lab in the next room.  this room here is adult testing – no stuff animals here. ”

The business person said “no! there are no bears”

– i looked at the audiologist and she looked like i did when i was 4 and pressured to go against the truth in an audiology lab.

The business manager slipped away and we chatted with the older Deaf woman who was in the mapping testing so that she could have more control over the settings and not be at the mercy of someone else turning dials and setting settings on her head.  Then the sales lady returned to say

“i checked the next lab room and there is not stuff animal”

i thought – geez thats odd that she needed to do that then i looked at the seated audiologist and she mouthed to me while the salesperson wasn’t looking



deceit is not sweet folks

so audiologists across the globe – toss the maniacal monkeys, creepy clowns, and terrifying teddies will ya

this is a rite of passage that is not right, just or good

bearlabone person after seeing Susan Dupor’s “…Push the Red Button” artwork made his own work.  It consisted of polyform foam shaped items set in a shoe box.  The shoe box had a large rectangle window cut into it, with a sheet of tinted plastic placed over it so you had

bearlabcloseupto look through the window much like looking into the audiology testing lab.  in one corner on a shelf was a sad looking teddy, on one wall was a 9 Volt battery with a lever and a metal wire running from the 9Volt battery to

bearchildthumbtacksoversized headset placed on a child sitting in what looked like an electric chair.  At the lever was another super sized teddy bear ready to pull the switch. Yep, this is how a young Deaf man felt about his time in the audiology lab chair.  Torture.




One young Deaf person told me she remembered all that stuff in addition to the darkened room with a spinning chair that she was too terrified to sit in so the audiologist held her in her lap as the chair spun round and round.

I asked what was that about?  What was it for?

She said “no idea.”

she said “The audiology center was right next to the hospital i was born at in Florida and since the time i can remember i had to go there for various testings and experiments.”

Experiments, folks.

2nd wave has been going strong for a while now

no worries – we are legions and we will win a 100 times over

just start telling the truth folks and making the invisible VISIBLE and demanding Ya Basta!

Graffiti art - Washington Grove Cobbs Hill 2014

Graffiti art – Washington Grove Cobbs Hill 2014



For YOU and for Me

we could say its me menopause but today i find meself very emotional and while i’ve been very busy and stressed i think that the culprit of my tears to day is just some days the ancestors come a callin’ more strongly than others.

so my morning started with some tears and my evening eases into bed time with tears – what triggered them?  Well Chuck and George.

still from Chuck Baird interview on Spectrum's old property - filmed by Tracey Salaway

still from Chuck Baird interview on Spectrum’s old property – filmed by Tracey Salaway

this morning when showing a short video about Spectrum – a Deaf Artists colony that ran in Austin, Texas from 1975-1980 – Chuck Baird got me all emotional.  Its true it was hard to watch the video after he had passed 2 years ago and then again after Betty G. Miller departed because she too is in the video.  This spring i was a little more prepared to watch it without such raw sorrow but Chuck got me anyways.


well, watching him and his quirky funny way of explaining things got me remembering how about 6 years ago he had contacted me with the idea of having a 20th anniversary for Deaf View/Image Art -De’VIA (art about the Deaf experience) and i was like SURE, YES, and HOW CAN I HELP?

(we had worked on a series of display posters on De’VIA motifs and themes for the 2008 NAD conference to show the evolution and growth of De’VIA and of course Chuck wanted more – not just posters but people coming together to share their work and celebrate De’VIA’s anniversary)

Chuck sent out some emails and postings to see if folks were interested and he felt he didnt get a strong enough response and probably was experiencing health issues but didnt want to share at that time so decided it was best we didnt pursue it.

Now it is De’VIA’s 25th anniversary and we aim to honor it with all our hearts and of course me heart breaks knowing Chuck wont be there in person.  I know he will be with us in spirit – for sure!  But im sad.  It makes me sad.  6 years ago when he proposed the idea – i didnt know he was sick and i didnt feel i had the right to lead such a thing.  so im just a wee bit sad i didnt do more sooner.  I aint angry with myself – just a bit weepy.  He did so much for You and for Me.

I’m sorry chuck.  real sorry.  But we will make your dream come true.  I promise.

my evening tears come when reading a bunch of papers and in one response about an artwork honoring George Veditz, a wonderful person has written: “I know George Veditz and he actually saved my life by preserving a beautiful language and encouraged us to choose ourselves.  We don’t choose by forcing us.”

This just made me so happy.  Years ago i read a quote by martin luther king jr that i latched onto and have not let go “we must have the spiritual audacity to assert our somebodiness” – to me the concept of being encouraged to choose ourselves, to choose our language – this is having the spiritual audacity to assert our somebodiness.  it does not come from force – it comes from encouragement and inspiration.

And this wee comment amongst many other things i have to read and do tonight got me thinking of a short tribute amongst many other tributes to George W. Veditz in the Maryland Bulletin April 1937 Vol. LVII No 7 p. 126 it made me cry and it chokes me up every time since.

Screen shot 2014-02-20 at 9.23.48 PM

Maryland Bulletin April 1937 Vol. LVII No 7 p. 126

Makes me cry.


well, im not sure – mostly i guess cuz i feel i should have and could have done more sooner and cuz George really did, has done, and is doing so much for YOU and for Me and cuz so many of us are doing so little for ourselves and our language.

But i have hope – with chaps like these stopping by – we cant go wrong.  And there are MANY good folks on the ground so Forward march.  We are not alone and we are legions.

Ahhh – A Flag of Our Own

Have you seen the Sign Union flag? (note: scroll down for info on ordering a flag of your own and for this blog entry in French)

Arnaud Balard, signing STAND, with the Deaf Union flag

Arnaud Balard, signing STAND, with the Sign Union flag

Update: link to video where Arnaud explains the flag

you can order the flag at:

Its a GRAND new flag designed by a Deaf-blind artist in France.  His name is Arnaud Balard and I am eternally grateful that i had the good fortune to meet him at the Kentucky DeaFestival in 2012.  You can see Arnaud explain his Surdism Manifesto, which is very similar to the De’VIA manifesto, yet it includes other genres that express information about the Deaf experience; such as poetry, film, theatre.  Surdism, which was coined in 2009, differs from De’VIA, which was coined 25 years ago, in that it utilizes terms such as audism and Deafhood.

Arnaud didn’t just idly sit around and come up with the design for the Sign Union flag – instead he engaged in vexillology, studying flags from all over the globe and for different purposes, aesthetics, and messages.  As Dr. Don Grushkin aptly stated, Arnaud’s flag has a very FLAGGISH look and feel to it.  We have seen other logos, motifs, flags, and banners created to try to signify Deaf-folks.  This is the first we have seen that really says PEOPLE OF THE HANDEYE.

When Audism Free America was given the honor of using the Sign Union flag for the first time during the ASL & Deaf Pride parade in April 2013, people were eagerly trying to get their hands on their own personal Sign Union flag.  As the small and large flags waved in the wind – it seemed to shout out – Signing people on the rise and on the move!  I ordered a Sign Union flag and it has been waving through the seasons of falling leaves and falling snow (and i look forward to what it will look like come spring).  It is filling me with joy and hope – love and courage.  This past Fall at the 2nd annual Deaf-mute Banquet at NTID where L’Epee’s birthday and the 100th Anniversary of Veditz’ Preservation of Sign Language film were honored, the Sign Union flag was given out to attendees and later when we moved into the Panara theatre and people wanted to wave applause – many waved the Sign Union flag instead.  This turquoises hand, outlined in gold and resting upon a dark blue background, moves in the wind or when carried as gracefully and freely as our hands do as we use natural sign language

“We were isolated in the midst of society; today we are reunited…Today we have united our intellects, our efforts, our lights; today we constitute one body; all of us, active and devoted members, desire the well-being of that body; today, we who were not, ARE!” ~Claudius Forestier

Sign Union Flag colors:

Turquoise – represents how the Deaf community cherishes Sign Language

Gold – symbolizes light, hope, knowledge, and enlightenment

Dark Blue – indicates Deafhood, an individual and collective journey to combat audism and embrace Deaf gain.  The concept of Deafhood was introduced by Dr. Paddy Ladd who also establied the Blue Ribbon ceremony to commemorate the experiences of Deaf people around the globe.  Dark blue is also the color used by the World Federation of the Deaf.

The Sign Union flag is getting around.  Arnaud thank you so much for creating, caring, daring and sharing.  Long live, long live the emancipation of the Deaf.

Deaf Union Flag in front of Eiffel tower Paris France

Deaf Union Flag at the White House Washington DC

Sign Union Flag at the White House Washington DC

Deaf Union Flag at NTID Rochester NY

Sign Union Flag at NTID Rochester NY

Video of Arnaud Balard introducing his Sign Union flag

arnaud balard flag at homeAhhhh – A Flag of Our Own!!!!!!!!!

Translation into French via google translator below:

Avez-vous vu le drapeau de l’Union des Sourds ?

Arnaud Balard , signant STAND , avec le drapeau de l’Union des Sourds
Arnaud Balard , signant STAND , avec le drapeau de l’Union des Sourds

C’est un nouveau drapeau GRAND conçu par un artiste de surdi-cécité en France . Son nom est Arnaud Balard et je suis éternellement reconnaissante d’avoir eu la chance de le rencontrer au Kentucky DeaFestival en 2012 . Vous pouvez voir Arnaud expliquer son Surdism Manifeste , qui est très similaire à la manifeste De’VIA , mais il inclut d’autres genres qui expriment des informations sur l’expérience des Sourds ; tels que la poésie , le cinéma , le théâtre . Surdism , qui a été inventé en 2009 , diffère de De’VIA , qui a été inventé il ya 25 ans , en ce qu’il utilise des termes tels que audisme et Deafhood .

Arnaud n’a pas seulement les bras croisés s’asseoir autour et arriver à la conception pour le drapeau de l’Union des Sourds – à la place il s’est engagé dans la vexillologie , l’étude des drapeaux de partout dans le monde et à différentes fins , l’esthétique et les messages . Comme le Dr Don Grushkin justement mis en scène , le drapeau de Arnaud a un look très FLAGGISH à elle. Nous avons vu d’autres logos , motifs , drapeaux et bannières créées pour tenter de signifier sourds – gens . C’est la première que nous avons vu que dit vraiment PEUPLE DE LA œil-main .

Lorsque Audism Free America a eu l’honneur d’utiliser les drapeaux de l’Union des Sourds pour la première fois lors du défilé ASL et sourds fierté en Avril 2013 , les gens ont été avec impatience tentent de mettre la main sur leur propre drapeau personnel Union des Sourds. Comme les petits et les grands drapeaux agités par le vent – il semblait crier – Signature des personnes sur le lieu et sur ​​le mouvement ! J’ai commandé drapeau de l’Union des Sourds et il a été en agitant jusqu’à l’automne et dans la neige – me remplir de joie et d’espérance . L’automne dernier, lors de la 2e Banquet sourd-muet annuel à NTID où L’ Epee’s anniversaire et le 100e anniversaire de la préservation Veditz ‘ d’un film en langue des signes ont été honorés , le drapeau de l’Union des Sourds a été remis aux participants et plus tard, quand nous avons emménagé dans la Panara théâtre et les gens voulaient des vagues d’applaudissements – beaucoup agitaient le drapeau de l’Union des Sourds place. Cette turquoises main , décrit en or et reposant sur un fond bleu foncé , se déplace dans le vent ou lorsqu’il est effectué avec autant de grâce et librement que nos mains ne nous utilisent comme langue des signes naturel
«Nous étions isolés dans le milieu de la société , aujourd’hui nous sommes réunis … Aujourd’hui, nous avons uni nos intelligences , nos efforts , nos lumières , et aujourd’hui nous constituons un seul corps, nous tous , membres actifs et dévoués , le désir du bien-être de cette corps ; ! aujourd’hui, nous qui ne sont pas , sont « ~ Claude Forestier

Union des Sourds couleurs de drapeau :

Turquoise – représente la façon dont la communauté sourde chérit la langue des signes

Gold – symbolise la lumière , l’espoir , la connaissance et l’illumination

Bleu foncé – indique Deafhood , un voyage individuel et collectif pour lutter contre audisme et embrasser le gain sourds . Le concept de Deafhood a été présenté par le Dr Paddy Ladd qui a également establied la cérémonie du ruban bleu pour commémorer les expériences de personnes sourdes dans le monde entier .

Le drapeau de l’Union des sourds se fait autour . Arnaud merci beaucoup pour la création , la compassion , l’audace et le partage . Vive , vive l’émancipation des Sourds .

Sourds drapeau de l’Union devant la tour Eiffel Paris France

Sourds drapeau de l’Union à la Maison Blanche à Washington DC
Sourds drapeau de l’Union à la Maison Blanche à Washington DC

Sourds drapeau de l’Union à NTID Rochester NY
Sourds drapeau de l’Union à NTID Rochester NY

Vidéo d’Arnaud Balard présentant son drapeau de l’Union des Sourds

CI CO.rruption and Uncool Cops

some items in the news for your review:

Cochlear implants

Cochlear LTD of Australia founded by Graeme Clark loses $131.2 MILLION to Alfred E. Mann Foundation for Scientific Research.  See

There’s $$$$$ in them thar ears, eh?

A lab at MIT has been playing with a 100% implantable CI implant.  There has been a mad dash to try to make a fully implantable CI (no external processor) for a while now. Recall the Denver, Colorado Co. that got sued by a French company for stealing over its talents and trade secrets.  The Co. company – Otologics was fined $5.9 million dollars

Why would they want a fully implantable CI??  well then the kiddies cant mess around with the external processor and break, loose, toss, hide, etc the external part of the device.  It is not enough that they can now remote control CI (parents, teachers, aides, audiologists, doctors, etc can turn off and on a child’s cochlear implants at whim – without the child’s consent).  the child can still tamper with the external device, they can still resist wearing the external device, they can still make it difficult to keep the external device on them so…. lets remove that “option” completely.

Making the device 100% implantable is not going to make it work better – in fact it will make it harder to repair and access in order to check or change.  It also will mean that folks can NOT simply get an upgrade on their external processor that would be compatible with their internal part.  Instead it would mean that they would have to have to be explanted (existing internal part taken out) in order for the 100% implantables to be put in.  We also don’t know if that will require new drilling spots through the skull due to explanting the old models and making room for the new internal part and w/ battery parts that would now be internal.

Interesting, eh?

of course there is still buzz here and there about stem cells but nothing definitive and you really cant get honest answers as to if the various existing cochlear implants will even be eligible for stem cell what with all the drilling and electrodes etc to the hair cells there.  Cant regrow what aint there no more

the 100% implantable implant has been done with moderate to severe via the envoy esteem – ya know like with the sarah c. viral video “Deaf since birth woman hears for the first time” bs (bs cuz she could hear a great deal before that implant.  all the implant did for her was bump up her ability to hear a bit more.  Hear perfectly and clearly and everything – no) see FDA – scroll down for

We wont even talk about genetics folks

it is a brave new world and yep – u aint wanted.  dont believe us?  just check out what Belgium just approved re: children and if ya think – well they dont see Deaf = terminally ill and unbearably suffering recall the Deaf Belgian twins that were euthanized recently

yep and i aint even finished reading War Against the Weak by E. Black.  just cant get too far through it as i have studied up on eugenics and well wow humanity is so inhumane sometimes methink

New article out:

Precarious Plasticity

Neuropolitics, Cochlear Implants, and the Redefinition of Deafness by Laura Mauldin published in Science, Technology and Modern Values

(very important folks!!! this is why EHDI has been so deceitful and harmful and pro-anything auditory/oral – see karl white’s finishing the EHDI revolution manifesto in the volta review)

Precarious Plasticity: Neuropolitics, Cochlear Implants, and the Redefinition of Deafness by Laura Mauldin
Abstract: This article provides an ethnographic account of pediatric cochlear implantation, revealing an important shift in the definition of deafness from a sensory loss to a neurological processing problem. In clinical and long-term therapeutic practices involved in pediatric implantation, the cochlear implant (CI) is recast as a device that merely provides access to the brain. The “real” treatment emerges as long-term therapeutic endeavors focused on neurological training. This redefinition then ushers in an ensuing responsibility to “train the brain,” subsequently displacing failure from the device onto the individual’s ability to train his or her brain (in pediatric implantation, this most often falls onto the mother). New caregiving techniques that accompany implantation are understood through neuropolitics, showing how parents are encouraged to engage in neuro-self-governance, and how the concept of neuroplasticity is used to cultural ends.from

And some Hearing parents have been blogging about loving their Deaf children as they be… Deaf



and one mom shared in FB about how audiologist said have to do ABR with sedation but when she inquired about the side effects associated with sediating a 15 month old the receptionist referred her to the anesthesiology who said “studies have shown that there is a possibility for children under the age of 3 to develop severe health problems in the future, including neurological issues.” and if its not a medical necessity, no need to risk it.  (that is just the sedation for the ABR – the sedation for implantation surgery is stronger)

so what is a medical necessity?

other things in the news:

Uncool cops

Seriously they is supposed to be peace officers – what is all this crap about denying Deaf folks civil liberties and worse yet killing them sometimes simply for being Deaf

latest – Deaf guy tasered in Ca. simply for using ASL and signaling he is Deaf

Others (note how many of these folks are People of Color – not cool cops, not cool)

African American Deaf man being held in Georgia Corrections facility without proper access

Police beat African American Deaf man for not obeying orders he couldn’t hear

White Deaf and Mentally Challenged woman beaten by police for not obeying orders

African American Deaf woman tasered by police when she sought help from dom. volience situation

African American Deaf mentally ill man on a bike dies after being tasered by police in SC

White Deaf man maced and beaten by copy and denied phone access in St. Paul – sues and wins $93,000

Latino Deaf man incarcerated for 30 years in isolating conditions for a crime his brother has since confessed to

African American Mentally Challenged Deaf man tasered and pepper sprayed by police in Alabama

Native American Deaf man killed by police – family awarded $1.5 million in civil settlement

Many others Deaf folks – especially POC have been killed or put in jail unjustly – racism and audism being the reasons.  Walking, running, driving, riding a bike while a POC and Deaf can be dangerous

Not cool, definitely not cool.

Also – MANY folks have told me that when they were arrested their hearing aids and cochlear implants have been taken away from them and denied use during the time of their being in jail.

hmmmmm.  at one end of the spectrum they are forcing cochear implants and digital devices onto infants and toddlers and at the other end they are forcing them off of them.

why do folks see Deaf as Death and why do they try to make Deaf dead

it aint no coincidence that the word for deaf and death are very similar in SEVERAL languages

odd eh?