Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Its all about inclusion innit?

Some are still complaining deaf and HoH aren't being considered for deaf and HoH roles.  But a recent UK blog, with no less than 32 charities behind it (!) insists it is discrimination.

Bias and vested interest seem to be the point, going by their 'support' which included no less than 9 theatrical charities for the deaf and a site run BY one of the contributors..  but it's very little to do with actual access or inclusion as by default, dedicated BSL and cultural media is non-inclusive and specialised.  Deaf and HoH playing deaf and HoH roles is stereotypical typecasting, so they are confining themselves.  Do they think adding a few HoH charities validates it all?   80% of charities have no viable membership and a perusal of people running them seems to suggest they are often one and the same people.  What inclusions are they really on about? and, have they identified a fee paying audience at all?  as near all their ouput is subsidised via disability grants given via the 'Deaf & HoH' remit rule.  

It's just making output for themselves and including the 10m with hearing loss isn't even a consideration, since using captions and an occasional hearie keeps them in compliance with the funding rules appears a bit cynical, but with totally unrelated content it is a con act to promote a sign culture instead.  They already have the largest slice of the funding cake and media inclusion.  It is disproportionate to the core sector of those with hearing loss.

What are they actually suggesting? mainstream invent deaf and HoH parts so they get included?   Only allow actors who have a hearing loss can take on such a role?  Poor old deaf artists, you aren't viewed as being able to do anything else by your own people.  According to one main charity in the UK, this is discrimination against hearing/HoH and other deaf (And it's a charity NOT included in this site's listing of 32 biased supporters).  Is anyone asking the people who buy the tickets?  Or those that create the theatre and the Arts?  It's a minority within a minority output and the only way out of that is to stop navel contemplation.  Diversity is just the ultimate cop-out.

They need to ask themselves why mainstream investors in the Arts DON'T feel such output is worth their while, and after all it's their money, not a handout from charitable funds, and nothing at all to do with discrimination as alleged.  If they know nobody hearing is going to turn up to watch such output why would they pour money into it?  They, AREN'T a charity.  It needs such deaf artists to prove they can do more than just play themselves as they are unrealistically demanding.  Those roles only will exist in minority output and only as long as the funding is there.

Are you anti-disability?

ATR does feel it isn't as simple as minding your D's, d's, ists and isms! There are people who don't feel disabled are the same as them and go on often very visible examples.  Of course, the way you approach that image is the issue.  We all suffer from being wary of things we don't understand.

The idea there is some 'perfect' able-bodied example to offer comparisons is the problem as the trend today is everyone is equal and the playing field should be viewed as completely level. Disabled don't really understand 'able-bodied' have issues too and they don't get all they want or deserve either it may be easier to try that's all.  Unfortunately, skill levels and ability play a major part in deciding that.  With the best will in the world, you don't hire someone with lesser ability just because of their inherent right to apply or an access law says you must.

I don't think it really helps to suggest everything we say or do can be viewed as negative and intended that way.  Ignorance pretty much rules, and with regards to deaf people, there are alternative and accepted views on how their issue (Deafness and loss of hearing), may or may not be viewed as a disability, so you have the mainstream confused because they don't really see how one person deaf sees it as a non issue and another feels their life is ruined by it, or the one size fits all is valid.

I think in terms of disability the key here is LOSS of a sense or part of the physiology, and those born without it to start with will not see it as any different.  It doesn't help to find new ways to suggest mainstream is down on the disabled when disability is undefined or even the concept opposed from within the areas of those with them. We get the conundrum whereby even those born without some basic issue will claim they are being got at too because subconsciously they buy into their issue disabling them so they can respond on that level.

We aren't all the same, and we don't believe everyone wants that either. It kills aspiration and progress.  I can think of nothing worse than everyone on the same level and doubt it is even possible for those with a disability or those without one. Where skills are equal of course.   The hashtag culture has a lot of negativity and fuels difference and people's attitude towards it.  You can be anti/against another person's view without it being viewed their disability or non-disability is under attack, the problem is people ignorant of the difference, or having a polarised view on things, we can therefore, agree while we aren't in any unison, you cannot expect anyone else will be.  If they see one deaf person doing this and another doing that, can we force them to choose which is the most valid? 

We are damned if we do, damned if we don't use the right terms, but these terms change daily....  The real issue, is a disability (Indeed deafness and the people with it),  become an entity in themselves and a 'breed apart' by default via their own unity of approach towards attitudes, then we are borderline 'us versus them' which is entirely unhelpful to either area.  What happens is 'each to his or her own' initialising the default position, so any level playing field then becomes relative.

I can play!