Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Vallahian.Com's Misconstruction of "Reverse Audism"

Eric Gjerdingen aka really misconstructed or misinterpreted the meaning of "reverse audism".

Many of us, deaf people already know what "audism" meant or understand the concept of "audism".

The general definition of "audism" are about hearing people keeping deaf people in its place like denying opportunity to us, deaf people from reaching out to the full capacity of our cultural and linguistic uses. Or either the meaning of audism for hearing people having such prejudiced or discriminatory viewpoints of deaf people as human beings.

The correct interpretation of "reverse audism" would be about deaf people deny or demote hearing people to the fairness of society like denying them the admission to the deaf club because of their hearing status. Or deaf person in authority position bypass qualified hearing individual over unqualified deaf individual for given employment /volunteer position. It is properly defined as "reverse audism".

Any deaf people apply prejudice or belittlement or scorn or ridicule other deaf people based on their signing abilities would be characterized as "horizontal or vertical oppression", not "reverse audism".

That's what Patricia Raswant of her blog and others used to discuss about the so-called horiztional and vertical oppression toward particular deaf group during the Unity for Gallaudet protest.

Some deaf individuals recalled their school days of being ridiculed and mocked for their non-signing abilities seen as the typical schoolyard bullying tactics. That was nothing to do with "reverse audism".

The educational system of the deaf vigorously ought to root out the schoolyard bullying toward deaf students by other deaf students.

The society at large slowly increasingly realize the existence of "reverse racism" by any ethnic or racial minority group like black people technically deny or dismiss the white people to the employment opportunity or kind of legitimate complaint within workplace situation or law enforcement issue.

Eric Gjerdingen ought to issue the formal apology to the Audism Free America for his misconstruction and misinterpretation of "reverse audism".

The Audism Free America (AFA) grassroot activist group never engaged in any kind of reverse audism against hearing people as part of systematic revenge or payback. The AFA simply confront the Alexander Graham Bell Association of the Deaf (AGBell) for past and present attitude mode and tactics of undermining the existence of cultural and linguistic uses among deaf people in educational area and popular entertainment and other means.

Did you see the AFA holding up signs saying "Down with Hearing People!"? Nope!!!!

More and more deaf people begin to stand up and remind the society at large about the unacceptable norms of systematic prejudices and discrimination against deaf people in general.

That is what the Audism Free America try to do lately. The Alexander Graham Bell Association of the Deaf often use pathetic excuses like pointing out to the parental choices for preferred communication modes for any parents' deaf babies and youngsters. This very same organization usually imposes the unworkable ideology upon emotionally vulnerable parents of deaf babies and youngsters from exploring all kinds of options of best availability of educational needs for deaf kids in general.

The AGBell Association ever done the audistic behavior by writing to the Pespi Cola and NBC-TV network and other associations over endless years by questioning their decision to feature the beauty of American Sign Language (ASL).

Why the AGBell want to intervene the model of free market among American corporations, ex. Pespi Cola and NBC-TV network for its own free-willed decisions of showcasing the true diversity of American society?

Have the National Association of the Deaf send up any written objections to any company or entertainment medium that they should not show any oral communication methods used by deaf? Don't think so!

The Audism Free America made very pragmatic and logical demands to battle the evils of audism to the Alexander Graham Bell Association of the Deaf. Nothing extreme or reverse audism about the AFA's demands and actions.

The eye-popping facts about the AGBell's membership ratio largely consisted of medical professionals by 67% percentage to 9% of deaf people in its membership. The AGBell finally elected the deaf person to the leadership position last two summers ago.

The Audism Free America conducted very dignified and responsible demonstration in front of the AGBell's Volta Bureau building and educated the society at large about saying NO, NO, NO to AUDism!

ASLize yours,
Robert L. Mason (RLM)


  1. RLM -

    You are correct.

    Considering his background, his daddy headed two oral schools. He is wet behind ears.

    I found out when I googled.

  2. Oh RLMDeaf, let you know that somebody did informed me that same guy Eric lives in very high classy apartment while he's subscribing social security (on welfare). No job! His daddy spoiled him as a favorite student while his daddy was a principal of oral deaf school.

    I'm one of his classmates at CID

  3. oooh sounds like I have 15 minutes of fame headed my way thanks to you!!! You would have made my day a bit brighter if only you'd increase the font size on my name a bit, then I'd feel like a Broadway star. But seriously, it isn't so hard to find out who I am when all you need to do is click on my profile at my blog.

    Robert, I get the impression that you actually did not read that paper by Tom Humphries that he wrote back in 1975 when he coined the word audism, simply because you would see that audism does not only apply to hearing people towards deaf people as you are claiming here, but it also mentions deaf people towards deaf people. That being the case, if there is any misinterpretation here, its at your end, because you are not defining audsim fuly.

    In fact, to quote Tom Humphries's paper, "What is this audism? It is the bias and prejudice of hearing people against deaf people, It is the bias and prejudice of some deaf people against other deaf people. It is manifested in many ways." and but it primarily relates to the oral deaf or the deaf that rely on speaking and listening skills. It does not appear to be limited to just the oral deaf tho.

    Either you did not read it or I totally overestimated your reading comprehension skills. Its gotta be one of the two.

    That being the case, what do you call it when it is the other way around or quite differently, when its the singer picking on the oral deaf? Logic tells me it would be reverse audism. There's reverse psychology, there's reverse discrimination, reverse racism, the list goes on. That had given me reason to inquire into reverse audism. When more and more people agreed, it led me more into beleiving that its a good word...ya know why?

    Cuz reverse audism makes MUCH more sense to me that that crab theory that has gone around for eons.

    Now the above commenter says my dad headed two orals schools, that is true, I actually went to one. Not only that he is also a former president of AG Bell, and I certainly am proud of what he has accomplished. But what you also need to know is that I do not agree with him on everything when it comes to deafness. If I had a deaf child, would I implant him or her? nope. Would I let him or her learn to sign? hell yea! I'd begin it while its still a baby.

    So you may ask then why am I doing this. Very simple reason, I get sick and tired of when one side belittles the other, when the oral belittle the signers or when the signers belittle the orals. It is disappointing to see that, now why does that happen?

    Is it crab theory?.........nope

    Is it audism/reverse audism?......absolutely!

    I've said this before and I will say it again, I support AFA's objective to reduce audism, but it would make a heck of a lot more sense in there name "Audism Free America" that the actually practice what they preach and that also means not committing acts of reverse audism.

    That being the case, unfortunately, I won't be bowing to your demand that I apologize, simply because I am not sorry for what I did. The truth needs to be told on why deaf people are so divided and we need to define a word that best describes it, and thats audism and reverse audism. Additionally, you have basically committed an act of reverse audsim right here on the spot the way I see it.

    Oh one last thing, my hat is off to you on one thing, you did something to me that many people have failed. You actually spelled my surname correctly, kudos to you on that!

  4. anon #2 - LOL! Gotta love the rumors that go around, but I hate to burst your bubble here but my SSI days went out the door not long after I graduated from college.

    However, I'm skeptical as to whether or not you really were a classmate of mine at CID, as I didn't have too many different classmates considering the fact that I left CID when I was only 9 years old.

  5. yes, Eric you were one of my classmates. Your attitude sucks!

  6. can't say I believe you cuz you're anonymous ya know? anyone could say that.

  7. To Valhallian,

    The 1975 source by Tom Humphries is NOT a "paper"! That shows that you haven't read it either, and you don't know what you're talking about.

  8. If I did not read it, then how would have I been able to quote it directly? its right here.

    I clearly stated that it was the source that I used when I wrote my posting as well.

  9. Responding to the comment made by Deep Ears:

    Here is other place that says that audists can be hearing or deaf:

    "Persons who practice audism are called audists. Audists may be hearing or deaf."

    This alone is enough to invalidate the position of the blogger that audism is limited only to the relationship between hearing and deaf people.

    Joseph Pietro Riolo

  10. It just hit me that there was a big possibility that some readers that have read this blog may not actually have read my posting as well so some of you may not be seeing the whole story here. That being the case, anyone is welcome there to read it, as RLM has said where it is, the being the case, I will no longer respond here, however, I will respond at my blog, because that way I will know you have at least read it and not blindly jumping the gun.

  11. doh, due to another error on Robert's part, I am compelled to make one additional comment, it is actually and not

    I must say that is kinda ironic tho, considering my surname is harder to spell and he actually spelled that one right.

  12. RLM,

    Does it bother you so much that a deaf person can really be an ism towards another deaf? What happens at the deaf school between a signer and a non-signer isn't limited to bullying. It is reverse audism or reverse oppression simply because the perpetrator committed such act ONLY because the victim COULD NOT SIGN. If you don't think that is oppression, then you are very misguided.

    Then here is another common act perpetrated by some deaf people who thinks they are better than the other deaf, such as the big D and the little D. That is also reverse audism or what have you. However you want to word it, it is oppression all the same.

    What are you saying? that the deaf do not oppress the deaf? Get real. It's clear that you are downplaying this reverse audism or audism between deafies.

  13. Vallhalian,

    That is NOT a paper! That just shows that you are not a scholar, and you don't know what you are talking about. You do not know what the actual 1975 source is. It's not a "paper"! Get your facts straight. You have proven that you are a dilettante.

  14. OK, Deep Ears, so it's Tom Humphries' unpublished dissertation, it's that the distinction you wish to make, Mr. Scholar? Many people, deaf included, are cognizant of the fact that it was Tom Humphries who coined the word "audism" as Harlan Lane referred to this source in his writings. So what. That doesn't make Humphries any less an "expert" than you are. Sheesh, get a life.


  15. Wow, I read Eric's comment and the rest of your comment also and this is a very interesting subject to have a discussion and to be able to see everyone's opinion posted on this but honestly, all you guys do is find something about that person and point point point point at them, offfffff the board, not even related to what eric was trying to say. FREEDOM OF SPEECH, it was here and passed before most of us were born, we can say whatever we want (yeah) but to degrade one another, thats definitely wrong and disrespectful! We are here as a deaf person wanting to learn or share information not to cause a chaos but to try understand things better. how can we all learn if we do not have this kind of thing, so just keep on learning and share opinion not POINT FINGERS about something else not even related to the subject. have some respect! STOP AND THINK THEN ACTION! eric, you rock and keep on rocking....

  16. Hippyrose,

    I am in total agreement with you about not jumping on any individual, who express hir own thoughts as part of freedom of expression and speech.

    Every of us know that there are some limits to the freedom of speech guaranateed by the U.S. Constitution.

    We simply could not shout "Fire" at any movie theatre without any real occurence of fire.

    We ever not have the right to malicious pursuit of any individual with falsehood or intentional smear to discredit someone with misinformation.

    Any writer do have the responsibility to issue out the correction whenever he or she make any misfact or inaccurate information.

    That's why many publications do offer the correction or oubudsman to admit their reporting errors, etc.

    Eric ought to realize that his meaning of "reverse audism" is largely misinterpreted or erroreous.

    Eric do not have any moots about the claims within Tom Humphrey's definition of "audism" to "reverse audism".

    There are many research findings shown that any deaf products of residential schools in signing environment are less hostile to hearing peers and society at large as compared to deaf peers from mainstream and oral schools.

    That is part of emotional intelligence (EQ) among deaf individuals with well-balanced self esteem and self-perspective.


  17. ACCK, Eric's father, Dennis was the president of Clarke School for the Deaf! His father brainwashed my mother not to use sign language while there was a turmoil lawsuit against in CID at 1996!

  18. A lot of time it is deaf stop themselves to reach full potential by being not helping selves then blame hearing as if hearing spend all their day thinking of way to make it difficult for deaf. I stopped worry about so called discrimination and just went out look for work. Instead of say out loud to them that I’m deaf and keep saying it then cry discriminate because I not get job I found job I can do and show them I can do it and while do that I let them know that deaf as well. Deaf hold deaf back because some deaf want others to not succeed then they say discriminate and they have made a cause they can fight and be hero of. Most so called ‘unacceptable norms of systematic prejudices and discrimination against deaf people in general’ exist only in deaf peoples mind and protest type deaf want it like that so they can keep protest instead of getting job.

  19. Peter,

    The Audism Free America (AFA) rally was not about blaming the entire hearing people, but educated them about the existence of audism (audistic behavior).

    Many hearing people usually do not realize that they are being audists.

    We have to stand up and speak our hands to let the society at large know about what we are capable of, not pity or demote us.

    For example, two candidates for the Physical Plant Department (PDD) at Gallaudet University back in the mid-90s.

    One candidate - deaf with M.A. degree in physical engineering and used ASL.

    Another candidate - hearing with only B.A. degree not related to the physical engineereing or any given job responsibities with the PDD and know no sign language at all.

    Guess what? Gallaudet University hired the hearing candidate over real qualified deaf candidate for the head of PDD position at the very deaf university.

    Could you imagine how you would feel if you are truly qualified for this vacant job position, but hired someone due to hir own hearing and speaking ability?

    That is purely an act of AUDISM!

    One deaf federal government employee were told by his own supervisior that he will be not promoted due to his being deaf.

    Guess what? This kind of employment discrimination based on civil rights violation (audism) actually cost us, American taxpayers about $60,000 in legal suit.

    If not for this kind of audistic behavior (audism), the American taxpayers would not have to cough up the legal suit for the discriminatory practice against truly qualified deaf individual.

    Comprendo? We are not basically the whiners, but REALISTS what we could change the mindsets of our great country, the United States of America.


  20. Anonymous,

    Whoa about Eric's father suppressed your deaf mother from signing ASL at the CID.

    How sad! That is kind of payback you want to avenge upon Eric for what his father done to your deaf mother. I would not blame you at all for feeling resentful toward Eric and his father.

    I kinda enjoy this kind of drama concerned Eric. I am compelled to learn more about Eric what kind of person he is.

    Whenver I see Eric. I will give him a big hugs and forgive him for what he said about "reverse audism". Forgiveness is the best medicine. Don't you know that?

    Thanks for your comment.


  21. ok, RLM, you have me tempted to leave another comment, you say that the anonymous commenter has a deaf mother when that commenter never said that his or her mother was deaf. That raises my eyebrows no doubt ;)

    There's more, another anonymous commenter says that he was my classmate at CID while my father was principal. Reality is that my father did not become principal of CID until years after I left CID.

    I won't make any assumptions here but I also wanted to say that there really isn't anything for you to forgive, because all I did was to speak the truth, reverse audism does indeed exist. If you don't like whistleblowers, I understand.

  22. Vallahalalaiaan,

    Why did your papa tell my hearing mother not to learn how to use sign langauge? It was happening when I was a very small student at Clarke School for the Deaf after my mother did read a newspaper about lawsuit against CID in 1996. I have CI and it doesn't help me to understand the language by oralism. I learn more language from through ASL education in mainstream public school with interpreter. After all ASL is certainly help me to understand more language concept.

    Why did your father tell my mother not to use sign language in first place?

  23. Vallahian,

    You got all wrong about me who and what I was all about.

    I greatly admire any whistle blowers and truthseekers. Okay?

    Whatever you believe in the definition of "reverse audism". I will not stop you in your own tracks. :)