Monday, November 20, 2006

An analogy

A while ago in my bilingual education class, the instructor hosted a panel discussion with some Deaf students from the community, many of them former students of hers that themselves went into bilingual education. They were there to talk with the students about being Deaf, their experiences in school, and also the protests that were occurring at Gallaudet University. One of the women said something that has stuck in my mind, though. When the discussion turned to cochlear implants, she said she didn't believe you could "fix" people, which is why she wouldn't have laser surgery. She was, however, wearing glasses, so it wasn't as though she was going au natural. I think a better analogy would be to not try and "fix" blind people. Laser surgery can't "fix" blindness, just as cochlear implants won't turn a deaf person into a hearing one. She obviously doesn't have a problem with glasses for people who can't see well, so I have to wonder, does she has a problem with hearing aids for people who can't hear well?

4 comments:

Mrs.Chili said...

This is a HUGE issue in the Deaf community. When I worked with Deaf students, I came into almost daily contact with it, and found it to be an amazingly difficult subject to get a decent handle on.

Do you often work with Deaf? I had intended to become a ToD in English, but I've decided to turn my attentions in different directions; the Deaf community in my state is generally located about an hour away from where I live, and I found that I wasn't getting the support I needed to meet my goals. I'll be interested to hear your expereinces, if you work with that community.

Teacher Anonymous said...

I don't personally work with the Deaf community. The instructor of my bilingual education class is a former bilingual instructor to the deaf, who now trains bilingual ASL teachers.

Mrs.Chili said...

REALLY? Where? (you can answer that in email to me, if you want to keep your superhero identity a secret)...

Teacher Anonymous said...

Umm, I'm feeling very inept, but I can't find your e-mail anywhere.