Monday, October 09, 2006

358: common sense & bomb threats

Some things should be clear to everyone.
  • It think is NOT protesting students who are calling in bomb threats. Why would they perform an act forcing them to leave the very building in which they are protesting? Rumors abound, but nobody has proof. Whoever it is, please stop, because one day there could be a real situation, and the police will ignore it because there have been so many false warnings, and someone will get hurt.
  • As Karl Ewan notes on MishkaZena, Fernandes is portraying herself as THE leader who can speak for THE Deaf community. What would happen if ONE woman stood up and said she could lead ALL women? We do not need people speaking FOR the Deaf community. We need a leader who will work WITH Deaf people. ALL Deaf people, from all tribes of the Deaf Nation. As Karl says:
    Before any of you jump on me on why I am saying my piece of mind, ask yourselves this: How would you feel if I, as a white person, went on record saying that I know what it is like to be a person of color because I have been living in it? Or if I, as a deaf person, went on record saying that I know what it was like to be hard-of-hearing because I have been living in it? I would be crucified for complete and utter ignorance as well with having many folks come like a swarm of locusts on my back ‘til kingdom come.
    Which is exactly what is happening with Fernandes.
  • Thirdly, from Adam Stone's blog today:
    David said it best: “People who do not learn sign language make deaf people disabled.”

    I walked away from the intense discussion feeling a little dazed. On one hand, I had just attended a consciousness-raising session; Deaf power was surging through me.

    On the other hand, I realized with sadness how I had taken communication access for granted in America. Sure, we have problems–audism/oppression at deaf universities, educating the ignorant about the ADA–but when all’s said and done, we have it pretty damned good back there.
    He's right. We do. But today, with attacks on the ADA, Closed Captioning, and budget cuts to Deaf programs around the country, more than ever we need to fight to maintain this. We have a LOT to lose right now. A great rep to the world can do so much for us.
  • Fernandes claims again and a gain the fight is about what it means to be Deaf and that this is just "squabbling amongst Deaf people." Many hearing people and hard of hearing people have been involved with this protest. Even if this WERE "squabbling amongst Deaf people," isn't that important? Isn't what it means to be Deaf - an important issue? Are the issues that face the Deaf community not important to Fernandes?
  • On the other hand, the protestors have yet to make a coherent case against Fernandes in the media. But this is not entirely the point. When you start working for a new company, you have to earn your cred. and get respect. Fernandes has had several months since the announcement of her selection to get her hands dirty - haha - and talk to protestors. It would NOT have been that hard - they WANT a charismatic leader with lots of experience and commitment. I kept my blog neutral because I hoped Fernandes would come forward - I still hope she does - and go into HMB and say, I'm here, I really don't get what's going on, let's work this out. The fact that she dismisses these people and their concerns says a lot. The fact that she doesn't let the Press on campus says a lot.
  • Some have said, at no other University in the world would this happen. Well, yeah. There's only one Deaf University in the world.

I encourage protestors: USE COMMON SENSE. Stop the rumors and stick to fact, letter, discussion and investigation. Some of the rumors I'm hearing are pretty goshdarn... weird. Fernandes is NOT Gollum in disguise. She did NOT get a magic ring which made her Lord of Kendall Green. She is NOT being confronted by two small, hairy men. She's a human being and a respected academic... who seems to have no people skills whatsoever.


DT said...

Joseph, as much as I can and do appreciate your sentiment, I am wondering about this new development: The FSSA appears now to be distancing itself from the students' take-over of the HMB. Seems a little hypocritical, to me, of the coalition to leave the students hung out there all by themseloves, doesn't it?

Joseph Rainmound said...

Hypocritical? It's fucking pathetic. The BOT broke a deadline and broke faith with the FSSA. They have not responded to that. The students have taken action and received no support from faculty and staff. I spoke to students in the HMB and they had to talk to faculty for hours to get them to support their action.

Why is this happening? I refer you to Chris Heuer's blog. Faculty and staff are asking about tenure. I submit people at Gally are sincerely afraid of losing their jobs after a reported witch hunt this summer.

Which is STUPID. Why fear losing their jobs? What would the administration do, hire signing monkeys to teach classes? Unless they want to prove they have no commitment to ASL-using faculty. (They don't. I've taken exactly two classes at Gallaudet. Both were teachers who could not sign well.)

Anonymous said...

David said it best: “People who do not learn sign language make deaf people disabled.”

Mmm-hmmm...I can feel the love all the way out here.

Bald-Head definitely needs to know it, because in his job capacity, he needs to be able to communicate with his charges. I think that's without question.

Now, how, exactly, this translates into such a sweeping general statement escapes me.

Yeah, it's me again. I think "Deaf Gadfly" may do as a pseudonym here at this rate. Yes, that will do.

--Deaf Gadfly said...

I just read you blog and just realized how true the comment "We do not need people speaking FOR the Deaf community. We need a leader who will work WITH Deaf people. ALL Deaf people, from all tribes of the Deaf Nation." and how profound :)

I am also surprised to see the kind of issues people in America are dealing with when compared to the issues people in India are facing....... do visit some websites on Indian Deaf... im sure you will find it interesting...