DAVID GRANOVSKY

In the Country of the Deaf, the Hearing Man is Culturally Deprived

In STEM CELLS IN THE NEWS on January 17, 2012 at 2:25 am
While “In the Country of the Blind
the OneEyed Man is King…”
In the Country of the Deaf,
the Hearing Man is Culturally Deprived
Image of Chuck Baird's Art No. 2, 375x337 pixels, 75 ppi depth, 11:1 compression.
A year ago I was reminded of this fact when I was trying to “help” people with hearing conditions and was set straight.  Deafness is viewed as much a culture and identity to some as it is viewed a “handicap” to others. You can read the article from last year here: HEARING LOSS – GIFT OR A DISEASE?
I have the utmost respect for the culture and identity of the deaf and only want to “help” those who want to be “helped.” (Unfortunately, even words like “help” have huge implications…it seems almost every word I use is charged with the potential for offense.) 
I do have one question which is spinning around in my brain at 2am while my tea grows cold and my back whispers conspiracies to my neck.  This is not a challenge but  merely an effort to know better and learn: 
  • If the “with hearing” child of parents “with hearing” were to suddenly go deaf, the parents would probably do everything within their means to recover the child’s hearing. 
  • If the deaf child of deaf parents were to suddenly gain audism, would the parents do everything within their means to remove the child’s hearing? 

I would love to receive people’s reactions to this. Please fee free to comment below.

Healthfully – David

AFA Denounces FDAs Approval of Newborn Stem Cell Experimentation

Audism Free America (AFA), a grassroots Deaf activist network, condemns the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its approval of a study which will use cord blood stem cells on infants as young as six weeks old in an effort to eradicate the Deaf population of the United States.

(PRWEB) January 16, 2012

Audism Free America (AFA), a grassroots Deaf activist network, condemns the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its approval of a study which will use cord blood stem cells on infants as young as six weeks old in an effort to eradicate the Deaf population of the United States.

AFA further denounces the FDA, Cord Blood Registry ®, LSL/AVT specialists,*Children’s Memorial Hospital (Houston), and the principal investigators of this study for undermining the human rights of their patients and promoting eugenic outcomes.

The newswire released on January 12, 2012 from Cord Blood Registry and Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital states that parents of newborns and infants between six weeks to 18 months will be recruited. The infants will undergo MRIs (which frequently include sedation), blood tests, and be given their own stored stem cord blood via IV infusions. Possible health risks to the infant were not mentioned.

The newswire contained alarmist views of how being Deaf impacts language abilities and social development without describing research concerning the negative impact of withholding American Sign Language and access to cultural identification with other Deaf people.

When contacted, Dr. Harlan Lane, Distinguished Professor at Northeastern University and recipient of the MacArthur Genius Award stated: “Children who are born Deaf or early become so have a dual heritage – they have their parents’ ethnicity and also that of the sign language minority; their natural language is American Sign Language. Exclusively pathological views of Deaf children have been out of date for decades. Deaf babies are healthy babies and live fulfilling and contributing lives.”

AFA advocates for the rights of Deaf Americans, cultural resurgence, and seeks primarily to challenge the ideological foundations of audism in America. Audism is attitudes and practices based on the assumption that behaving in the ways of those who speak and hear is desired and best. It produces a system of privilege, thus resulting in stigma, bias, discrimination, and prejudice-in overt or covert ways-against Deaf culture, American Sign Language, and Deaf people of all walks of life.

AFA calls upon governmental agencies to ensure their commitment to protecting all citizens, including Deaf newborns and infants. The actions by the FDA serve to highlight the medical community’s systematic effort to threaten the culture, language, and right to life of Deaf people-and therefore, endangering linguistic and cultural diversity in the United States.

*LSL/AVT specialists (Listening and Spoken Language/Auditory Verbal Therapists) are those certified by the Alexander Graham Bell Academy and promote oral/aural only approaches to language development excluding all forms of signing.

AFA Denounces FDAs Approval of Newborn Stem Cell Experimentation.

To see if you are a candidate for adult stem cell treatment, please fill out the form at bit.ly/stemcellsnow

For more information on adult stem cells and hearing conditions: https://repairstemcell.wordpress.com/hearing-disorders/

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  1. Hi David, I found your site this morning and appreciate all that you are doing. I lost much of my hearing in my mid thirty’s, so about 15 years ago. I wanted to reply to your question about culture and deafness as it’s something I have thought of quiet a great deal. Sign language (which I know some) is a beautiful way to express yourself. But, it is a closed system. Only the people (very few) who know it are the ones you can communicate with. Being able to hear sound is something I have begun to think of in more of a spiritual way–it is a connection to the rest of humanity.

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