Monday, 30 September 2013

The name changes, the issue don't...

It's an old chestnut, but  it seem one that some deaf areas still feel is worth pulling out of the fire when they feel righteous enough to complain about something.  UK deaf should look to the USA where terminology is at genius/academic status there, a new term a week on average, I suppose it keeps them from worrying about the dire state of their economy.

I have always seen the deaf terminology game as an barrier to any harmony.  I don't care for  BSL purists or oral purists, their terms are annoyingly negative, non-productive, downright boring,  and offer nothing of real value to any of our lives.  Who can forget 'Deafhood' or Deaf/deaf ? we are all desperately trying....

It seems some knee-jerk reaction to being unable to cope with the hearing loss mostly, lets blame it all on name calling.  Calling me non-impaired will then make me hearing ?    What's in a name ?  Latest UK deaf moan is about the term 'Impairment'. Start to worry if they call you something really bad !  If all I worried about was a term..... In reality this terminology is to defend for some reason never made really clear, the status of  'Real' deaf people, or those aligned with the cultural gig, aka those born with the silver spoon of deafness from day one, but now even other deaf have latched on to it, as some way to blame others for their loss.

It went Pete Tong when they invented what seemed like a good idea at the time, 'Modeling'.  My only  thought, is that for those who are losing hearing, many do feel they are disabled, and often some medical area has contributed to that, so I can respect the fact they believe the medical model and not the social model.  Or maybe they don't see any contradiction in supporting both.  Hell who cares except the purists....  They didn't like the disability tag,because irrespective of it really affecting their lives, the fact they cannot hear, that is society's fault as well.  In reality it really annoyed and stigmatized disabled communities who thought deaf were demeaning the fact they accepted the label.  In reality disability success in sport and other areas put deaf attitudes in a negative light... deaf look like they are discriminators to boot.

I think when they went 'modeling', the hearing loss area started to lose all real focus, and seized upon the terms to promote an a or b SECTOR of people, so in effect created yet another barrier for us lesser deaf to overcome.    I am deaf because there were two reasons for it, one was partially hereditary, the other I had my hearing beaten out of me before the hereditary factor did it first.  So would I support a or b terms to that, ?  who do I blame ? society ?  NO, attitudes ? NO, my parents ? I had the wrong term applied to me ? NO, my school teacher whose unprovoked assault on me at age 12 left me near deaf, YES.  He's dead now am I looking for someone else to blame ?  I'm not.

None of it was down it impairment, my teacher was  a sadist who enjoyed hitting children...... no term made me deaf, no term has made life any easier...... I don't want to spend my life looking for ways to justify how I can blame society, for what my teacher did to me.    I can support all the terms or models, or none, it's a relatively free world.   Frankly the one that gets me the best deal in support terms, life is too short.  I look to the UK deaf and HI communities and despair, if they aren't ignoring each other they are playing social-medical, cultural/oral, or communication games, they need a kick up the rear end and possible a real life, if worrying about being 'impaired' bugs then that much.....

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