Thursday, October 12, 2006

'coup d'universit e,' my ass. Listen up Gallaudet students!

OK, here we got again with Gallaudet. [I wrote about this back in May, enough already!] The WaPo reports:

"Protests over the next president at Gallaudet University intensified yesterday when the football team decided after midnight to join the demonstrations by blocking the campus gates, shutting down the school for the deaf."

The football team? Boy, you really know you're on the right side when the football team takes your side. According to the Post, Jason Coleman, the team captain, said he was "upset about the school's low graduation rates, which have hovered for years around 40 percent, and asked why Fernandes, who has been provost for the past six years, had not been able to change that."

Maybe if you all spent less time partying all night, keeping your neighbors up until the crack of dawn, and focused more on studying, your grades might go up. And since when does the football team have to get good grades to pass?

Anyway, among the many complains this time around, besides the Fernandez controversy, is that, "Some. . .protesters were consistently denied interpreters, cutting off their means of communication with the hearing world."

Of course, why should the University have to provide translators? If this is really that much of a problem, though, there's always the cochlear implant. Most of you all could actually hear if you really wanted to, and then you could go to any university you wanted. But, for some reason -- which the hearing world can't fathom -- the deaf community totally rejects the device.

A Brown Universty web site on the subject says that the, "implant is seen as a threat to the Deaf way of life and language much in the same way as oralism. People in the Deaf culture 'have declared war on the implant.' Deaf people have the most problems with implanting young children, action they proclaim is tantamount to genocide; 'Like the Nazis, they seem to enjoy experimenting on little children' (Solomon 38)." Mmm...yes, oralism, that's Fernandez' great crime, right? She didn't learn to sign unitl she was an adult? {Nazi!]

Anyway, besides the football team and a few malcontents who don't like Jane Fernandez because she's not deaf enough, everybody else is hurting over this nonsense. I just went to About: Deafness/ Hard of Hearing and the consensus opinion seems to be that you all need to knock it off and grow up.

One poster wrote:

"{A] cyber-friend who talked to 'reliable sources' gave me this unconfirmed information: some parents are reportedly withdrawing their children from the Model Secondary School for the Deaf (MSSD) high school, and also Kendall Demonstration Elementary School. According to the cyber-friend, 'about 70 students left.'"

Another one writes:

"I do not want Jane Fernandes for president any more than you do, but I have a stake in the campus re-opening. I have a child who attends Kendall Demonstration Elementary School! My child had no school today because of you. If you do not reopen the campus by tomorrow morning, my child will miss another day of school AND I will have to take the day off work because my boyfriend has classes in the daytime tomorrow at his college."

And another:

"I know how you feel, and even empathize, and understand the issues, and you have every right to protest! But, you don't have the right to prevent students of all ages from getting an education! ESPECIALLY the ones at pre-college! Deaf children need every day of education that they can get! This is NOT 1988. . . You are preventing elementary school students from getting an education. You are preventing babies and toddlers from getting an education. You are preventing adults from being able to do their jobs. You are preventing Gallaudet alumni from being able to get jobs - today was supposed to be a job fair and I have a deaf alumni friend who was counting on it to help him find a job."

Hey, there's an idea; how about, if you all really have a problem with the school, instead of disrupting your fellow student's lives and making your university a laughingstock, why not drop out and get a real job? How about that? I hear the Army is hiring.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see you have taken to slamming Gallaudet over things about which you couldn't possibly understand.

Number one...yes, this situation has been handled badly--but it's been handled badly by both sides.

Number two...the deaf community is not totally against cochlear implants. I know many deaf people who have them, culturally deaf and otherwise.

Number three...the cochlear implant is not a "fix" for deaf people. It does not work for many deaf, contrary to popular belief. And just so you know, not all deaf can learn to speak, regardless of how much speech therapy or implant "fixes" they have.

Number four...The Army doesn't allow deaf people to join.


3:24 PM  
Blogger bushmeister0 said...

1) The situation may be being handled badly on both sides, but there's only one side preventing people from going to school. Guess who.

2)I didn't say the whole community was against it. Obviously, though, there are many deaf folks who are rabidly against the cochlear implant. Since when does a group of peolpe who have a disability use terms like "nazis" and "ethnic cleansing" to describe a medical device that could help them? The mind boggles.

3) I never said all of you could benefit from the device. I just said "many."

4) The Army thing was a joke, lighten up. I simply meant that you all should find something better to do with your time. If you're going to go all militant about an issue, why not direct that energy towards something more constructive; like helping the massive homeless population in DC or something.

And thanks for the insult "anonymous," real mature.

11:37 AM  

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