Thursday, March 19, 2009

Getting the Facts Straight!

I just couldn't believe in my own eyes how it all became twisted from what I read at the comment section at Amy's blog then at Mishka Zena's blog accusing a member of DBC, Tami, who happens to be hearing and has been an excellent Deaf children's advocate, that she became an oppressor. Oh please! What is even unfair is that none of you can't judge for yourself without seeing the original comment of Tami's.

Although Tami is a hearing mother of a grown Deaf daughter, she has ultimate respect for the Deaf community and a great understanding of bilingual-bicultural concept. I wish that there are more of her! I have always admire her hard work, dedication, and energy that she has poured in to make a difference for Deaf babies along with other DBC members. I never at once have ever witnessed her oppressive behavior toward Deaf people! Tami kindly gave me her permission to re-print her comments that was removed from Amy's blog.

According to Tami, she said that she meant to request Amy to remove this commenter's profane comments since it is not suitable for children to read the blog. Yes, I know as parents, they are responsible to screen what is appropriate first before allowing the kids read but in reality there is no way the parents can police everything. Heck, I use child control program banning my children to have access to any sites that use profane language but there are times that they still find it, unfortunately. At least, I am lucky that they are not into blogs/vlogs of DeafRead. Here is what Tami said and you be the judge for yourself whether if it is considered oppressive toward a Deaf member of the community: ***************************************************************************************************************

xxx (name removed),

I respectfully take offense to your comment that DBC is “hellbent” on destroying organizations. Please let me explain why…

I have spent the last 10 days on the road, in behalf of DBC, going to major conferences speaking about the importance of bilingualism through ASL and English. We were able to present 4 times at the national Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Conference in Dallas. We also were an exhibitor there. We were able to get an after conference meeting with the Center of Disease Control administrators and the EHDI Conference coordinators to talk about increasing the number of Deaf experts on their planning committees.

We also had a booth and a presentation at Deaf Nation in Austin and also presented to parents at the Texas School for the Deaf. We then attended and presented at the CAL-ED conference in San Diego. And most recently, we were able to speak to an audience of 100 at CSUN.

DBC is educating those who impact Deaf babies an d children’s lives including parents, doctors, audiologists, speech pathologists,early interventionists, and the Deaf Community.

DBC is also educating AGBell as well in pointing out their “exclusionary” practices against ASL by promoting speaking and hearing without sign language. The long term consequences are devastating for those who need visual language, ASL, but are denied or delayed from accessing it in early language learning or in their educational settings.

Amy’s post is basically following suit with DBC in stating that AGBell is misleading parents that speaking and hearing is attainable by the majority Deaf children. These videos are great at selling parents a product that in the end may or may not work.

It is important to bring these issues to AGBell’s table. It is not about bringing down organizations but bringing them together to work for the benefit of all Deaf babies’and children’s language rights. This is what DBC is all about. I know this because I am involved in this on a daily basis.

Please know that there are many of us working very hard to advocate for Deaf children’s language rights. DBC is doing some very positive work in this area and has made great strides this past year including helping to set up a Deaf Mentor Training Course at Gallaudet University offered in July 2009.

xxx (name removed), you have a right to your perspectives, however, they are not accurate representations of what DBC is really doing. I hope that you will continue to advocate for Deaf babies’ language rights and work together with all of us who have the same goals.

Now her second comment:

Amy,

Could you remove or edit comment #34 as this language seems to be unnecessary.

xxx (name removed),

DBC does not take a stance against Deaf children learning to speak or be oral. DBC is only against “exclusionary” practices that deny Deaf children access to ASL and this includes children who use CI’s, hearing aids, or use neither. Research shows that children, regardless if they are hearing or deaf, have higher achievement rates in language development than those who are not exposed to sign language at birth. If you had been to the CAL-ED conference, this same message was echoed time and again by researchers and other presenters.

DBC seeks to educate those who have impact on Deaf children’s lives and their families lives on the benefits of ASL in early language acquisition.

xxx (name removed)….your comments about DBC are simply unfounded and not true. If you have not seen any of DBC’s most recent presentations to at EHDI and CAl-ED, I suggest you do so you can understand better what we are doing.

Just like Amy pointed out…AGBell is focusing on communication and not language. We are focusing on language and cognitive development.
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So Mishka said on her blog, " One leader of a Deaf organization appeared and attempted to silence this person by invalidating his experiences and opinions." Readers, do you find any evidence that Tami has attempted to silent this person? Do you really think she is "stifling the freedom of speech and ideas within the community"?

Also, readers, MZ said, "Later, in another comment, that leader accused the Deaf person of lying." No where in the comment did she say that this commenter is lying. All she said is, "your comments about DBC are simply unfounded and not true." Boy, speaking of taking the words out of context and twisting her quote. You may be the judge for this one.

All I see is that Tami is just simply clarifying the goals and action of DBC and what is wrong with that? Anyone of you would want to clarify your own facts if anyone made such comments that are untrue, right? So why couldn't Tami do that? Should she remain silent when one made inaccurate remark about something? It is ironic that they are the one who are oppressing this hearing mother's freedom of speech.

You are free to make comments, remember, freedom of speech comes with responsibilities.