Saturday, October 02, 2010

Backpedaling Denials

Own up to what you said! Stop trying to sidetrack and confuse. Using English against the deaf for the purpose of ambiguity in the messages.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

CI Children and Bicentennial Man

A discussion how Andrew the robot in "Bicentennial Man" is comparable to CI children and their families.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Deaf Shoplifter Suing

Christopher Rea, the deaf shoplifter from LA who was placed in a chokehold by an overly zealous security guard, is suing Forever 21, for whom the guard worked for.

The fact that he has a record of shoplifting and shoplifted on that day as well was besides the point. The store agreed that the security guard performed an act that was against the store policy and put him on suspension. So, if it was against the store's policy for their guards to place chokeholds on their suspects, why did this guard use this tactic? Like all other cases involving chokeholds and batons on the suspects - frustration. The guard clearly was frustrated that Rea did not stop when the guard called him to stop, proceeded to restrain him and placed him in chokehold.

View the video - Rea's face was almost purple. That is worth thousands words, folks. He did not fight the guard. He was not combative. So why the hell did the guard continue to use chokehold for a length of time? My guess is because Rea did not verbally respond and the guard interpreted that as resisting therefore continued to keep him in a chokehold. He totally ignored Rea's taps on his arm. Why? Hearing people are totally oblivious to physical contacts. They totally exist on sounds.

I believe this could have been shorter if Rea's brother had written a note and told the guard his charge was deaf and was tapping him arm to tell him to stop. It is unknown why Rea's brother did not do that. Apparently he stood there and did nothing. Perhaps he was afraid he might also get arrested for getting involved.

The store acknowledged that their guard performed an illegal act, but I feel suspension doesn't justify the act. I feel the guard should be fired. Rea could have died. The guard clearly did not have frustration threshold, and ignored signs and visuals. Fire him, Forever 21. And train your guards to understand the limits of their duties better. They are not cops. They are just guards and have limited role in apprehending shoplifters. Better to let them go and lose a few bucks than getting sued for millions and getting tarnished reputation.

However, the moral here is: Don't commit any crime. It doesn't pay.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Deaf Expo at Las Vegas: Mundane Experience

I literally slept through the 5-day stay in Las Vegas. I found the social events and the casinos filled to capacity by deaf people - too crowded for pleasant conversations. A lot of conversations got cut off by rude passer-bys or people stopping by to exclaim about not seeing my conversing partner in ages. Of course that's normal and to be expected but annoying, nevertheless. So it was definitely not fun meeting old friends there if I could not hold a decent conversation with them. It was mostly "Hi. How are you/How have you been doing," and then distracted by others.

The expo booths themselves were nothing special. It looked just like a regular expo that DeafNation hosts in different cities. I did not see anything different. They were monopolized by relay service providers as usual. I did enjoy a few art and crafts booths. Some of the artists were awesome. My husband, the sweet guy, got me a "I Love You" mold of his own hand. I love it. He surprised me with it.

I enjoyed lounging in my hotel room more than hanging out at Treasure Island where most of the deaf people converged to socialize. It was simply too crowded, too much standing, too much walking, aching back, legs, etc. It took the fun out of it. I missed many old friends due to large number of deaf people. I was disappointed about that. I believe there was about 10 to 20,000 deaf people there. Imagine that number in one hotel?

The Treasure Island pool social party? Forget it. Limited capacity. It couldn't accommodate 10-20,000 people. The pool area was just too small. Most people ended up staying in the hot hallway leading to the pool all night socializing. We walked into the pool area during a clean-up. I wondered why they chose that pool for social party? Other hotels had way bigger pools and decks than the one at Treasure Island. Planet Hollywood, Venetian, The Mirage, Excalibur, Cesar Palace, among others, would provide for better pool party than at Treasure Island.

The last time I went to Las Vegas was when I was a Gallaudet student in my teens. I went to the old strip with my mom. Back then, cars drove through the old strip. We went there to find the tar street covered in concrete for pedestrian use only with a video roof covering the old strip. And after 33 years after his death, Elvis still rules in Las Vegas at the old strip!

We watched Mystere by Cirque du Soliel - the only tickets that had discounts. I would have liked to see Blue Men and gone up to the top of the Stratosphere. I was disappointed that there were no discounts available for those. I think DeafNation people would do better if they had worked with the hotels to give discounts for those places. More people raved about Blue Men than Mystere. Yeah, they paid the full price anyway.

So, I enjoyed more staying cool in my hotel room on a soft sofa drinking cool non-alcoholic drinks and watching HBO movies on TV. I don't have HBO at home. I saw beer and cocktails every where outside my hotel room. Literally everyone were holding cans of beer or mixed drinks on sidewalks, in the mall, in hotels, in the casinos. That is the culture of Las Vegas.

I wish I had gone to the Caribbean to go snorkeling in their beautiful lagoons instead. I am not fond of drunken people in a crowd. I was so happy to be back home and swam in my pool for two hours in peace alone with the sparkling blue water.

I think DeafNation could do better by improving their expo and working more with the hotels to give the deaf people with more options other than socializing in their hallways and casinos. The options outside of the expo were limited. Only those with a lot of money could fully enjoy Las Vegas. It is a city for spending money. I am aware most of the deaf people went to Las Vegas just to see friends and not to do other things. I was not one of those. I wanted to do both.

Thus the rating of so-so for my Las Vegas Deaf Expo experience.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Candy/Gina: "Trust the System." Mindboggling!

Candy/Gina asked Linda in Mike McConnell's Wikipedia blog why couldn't we trust the system in regards to AB2072 that the bill would be rewritten eventually in our favor. Mindboggling!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Analysis of the Original Supporters of AB2072

Why were the original supporters OK with the original AB2072 before it was amended with 3 demands made by the coalition who worked with the health committee in the Senate. Let's see why....

CA AB2072 Group: THANK YOU!

I would like the opportunity to give a heartfelt gratitude to the CA's AB2072 group who worked so hard to get the 3 demands amended to this bill.

Why should I be concerned if I am not CA resident? It matters!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Court and CI

A Washington state judge in Bellingham ordered a 8-year-old girl to wear her bilateral CIs at all the time at request of her hearing mother while she visits her deaf father who uses ASL.

This is frustrating. What business does a judge have in this type of family affairs? How much does a judge understands about CIs and Deaf Culture? All the information he received came from the representatives of the plaintiff and the defendant. As a hearing person, he is naturally inclined to accept that CI is essential to process language from the word of a representative in his courtroom.

What he failed to realize is that when the deaf girl visits her father, there is silence. ASL is a silent language. CI is useless and worthless when the father and daughter communicates in ASL. This is also what the hearing mother failed to realize as well.

So what is the point in going to court to force the deaf girl to wear her CIs when visiting her deaf father? It is called Audism, folks. The mother is using her power as a hearing parent to force the issue on her daughter. It also may be a classical case of two bitter parents having a private war and the girl has little to do with it. The hearing mother may be using the arsenal as a hearing person to oppress both her ex and her daughter.

None of this belongs in a courtroom. This is a private issue and should be left up to the girl. It appears one CI is painful and she is reluctant to wear that one but is okay with the other one. Couldn't her mother be satisfied with that?

I've seen this a lot. I've seen a mother struggle with stopping speech service for her son who wore CI. The speech therapist tried to explain that his speech hadn't improved in years, and that he didn't process language through spoken language. It took almost an hour of going rounds on this topic before the mother finally gave in and agreed to stopping the speech therapy service.

Another mother was upset her son stopped wearing CI and declared that he is deaf. We the team explained that it sounded like he developed an identity as a deaf person and decided he did not want the CI, and showed her data that his academic progress continued to improve in the year he stopped wearing his CI. It did not impact his learning. She went to say that she was awfully glad her daughter liked her CI and wouldn't stop like her brother did. Guss what? Her daughter was more language delayed than her son was. However, the mother failed to recognize that. All she thought was because her daughter spoke well, she was smarter than her brother because she was able to communicate with her daughter orally and struggled to communicate with her son. You got it - she didn't sign.

This goes on and on. The parents are seriously undereducated about the benefits of CIs. They do have benefits, but not necessarily equal for every child. Children don't necessarily acquire language from CI alone. Most of them don't. They continue to need visual support.

Either this Washington State mother is undereducated about what CI can do (from what I've read, it may be that she is afraid that by not wearing CI 24/7, the girl will lose language acquisition over a weekend with her father which is not true) or is exercising oppression upon her ex and her daughter through audism. Either way, the victim is the girl. She should be given a choice.

The girl speaks well and utilizes her CIs for their intended use at school and at her mother's house. I would think the judge might see that as sufficient to support her language acquisition, so I am left to believe the judge doesn't accept ASL as a language which may be why he failed to recognize that while at her father's house, her CIs are useless. That is why the courts should not be involved.

So, what is a better way to meditate this type of dispute between parents over CIs? This will happen again. There will be another parent suing an ex to force a deaf child to wear CI. How to meditate in such a way where only people involved are experts in CI, ASL, language acquisition, and so forth, and leave judges out of the picture?