The late post of this is due to finding a topic that I can share. I ran through so many topics but nothing hit me, until I realized this month is Black History month. I decided to move my focus into a small group within the black community - black deaf people. They are amazing people I have had to hang out with. I joined the Freedom Club (a black deaf club) at Indiana School for the Deaf and was fortunate to be friends with them when a situation arose where I used 'negro' (which also means black in other languages) as a synonym to 'black'. I was taken aside to be explained to about the historical definition of 'negro'.
As with white deaf women, black deaf people go through double stigmata, of being black and of being deaf. With some readings and stories, the black deaf people in the South went through worse than those who lived in the North (they still experienced negativity, put downs and persecution). I have put up a list of black deaf people and there are more out there. There is also an organization called "National Black-Deaf Advocates" (NBDA), which I will add a link to at the end of this blog.
REMEMBER - this list I have provided is not limited; there are countless others!
Here's another story: I once was young...yeah, I am talking about maybe 6 to 7 years old, when discussion turned to someone who my aunt was dating. They mentioned that he was black. I asked my mother what they meant by a person being black. She couldn't think of how to explain until she realized that several students at my elementary school (local deaf and hard of hearing program) were black and she mentioned their names. She asked me why I did not see them as their skin color. I told her that we both were deaf and it was enough. Since then, I have been curious about those differences, which are basically social constructs. Respect and acceptance goes a long way.
I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me... All I ask is that you respect me as a human being. ~Jackie Robinson
Black Deaf Community/Facebook: facebook.com/BlackDeafCommunity
National Black Deaf Advocates: nbda.org/ (has other social media links)Gallaudet University - Multicultural Bibliography: gallaudet.edu/american_sign_language_and_deaf_studies/multicultural_annotated_bibliography_literature_and_resource_information_on_the_culture_education_and_rehabilitation_of_deaf_and_hard_of_hearing_persons_-x53925-ml.html
Acceptance of one's life has nothing to do with resignation; it does not mean running away from the struggle. On the contrary, it means accepting it as it comes, with all the handicaps of heredity, of suffering, of psychological complexes and injustices. ~Paul Tournier
To Be Whole
Currently I am an ASL teacher at a local college and at an high school. I received my Masters in Sign Language Education from Gallaudet University. At home, I am an activist within the community, Northwest Indiana. My son is in first grade and my daughter goes to E.C.L.I.P.S.E. ASL Preschool. Change begins with you and change is effective with a team.