Archive for the ‘Editorials’ Category

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MARCELLA M. MEYER, The Last of True Deaf Warriors

June 8, 2009

MMM2 banner

The day of May 26, 2009 brought another milestone into the history of the Los Angeles Deaf Community and everywhere else, with the passing of Marcella Mae Meyer. As one of the founders and as the CEO of the Greater Los Angeles Agency of the Deaf (GLAD), Marcella brought upon incredible changes affecting the lives of Deaf and Hard of Hearing people everywhere.

Affectionately known as MMM, Marcella M. Meyer deserves this special tribute from the Deaf Democrats editors because of her steadfast behind-the-scenes support of this blog. Marcella had been a long-time supporter of the Democratic Party and held the distinction of being the first Deaf delegate to the California Democratic Party convention. Another compelling reason is that the current chapter in our Deaf history would not have been made possible without Marcella breaking barriers in a very GUTSY manner.

Marcella M. Meyer, (1925-2009), now belongs to a group of legendary Deaf leaders who stood at a pivotal period in our community history, leaders such as Frederick C. Schreiber, Don Pettingil, Ed Carney, T.J. O’Rourke, Jerry Jordan, Frank Bowie, Boyce Williams, etc. This group led the Deaf Community at a watershed point when civil rights, services and access came flooding into our community. One of Marcella’s enduring legacies stemmed from her creating the Greater Los Angeles Agency of the Deaf, Inc. (GLAD), using a concept derived from a Leadership Training Program position paper at California State University, Northridge (CSUN). There at GLAD, Marcella M. Meyer reigned supreme for 24 years.

Marcella M. Meyer used the GLAD platform to bombard the world with legislative and social changes. Her favorite means of bully-pulpiting were her renowned feature, Marcella’s Musings, in the GLAD News magazine, and at GLAD Council meetings and staff meetings. She provided a true and fine example of the famous conventional wisdom: Whatever happens in California, the rest of the nation will follow.

Among Ms. Meyer’s early victories was winning a legal battle for the right to sit on a jury, a precedent picked up by the rest of the nation; another victory involved the legislation requiring telephone companies to impose surcharges on all consumers to establish a telephone access fund. This resulted in both a statewide relay service (California Relay Service) and a free TTY equipment distribution program, with both models being copied by other states.

One of Marcella M. Meyer’s most colossal battles brought changes to the sign language interpreting evaluation systems. This all began when she challenged the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) and its interpreter evaluation process by establishing a GLAD interpreter evaluation system. Her creation was adopted by the California Association of the Deaf (CAD) and then by the National Association of the Deaf (NAD). This process evolved with RID and NAD merging their evaluation systems into one, now known as National Interpreting Certification (NIC) system. These are only a few examples of Marcella’s achievements.

Also, one can say that Marcella M. Meyer was the very original queen of social justice, as she had the foresight to set up innovative programs dealing with issues that no one dared to touch — issues such as mental health, substance abuse, women’s issues, HIV/AIDS, smoking cessation, to name a few. More often than not, the issues and practices that she advocated would end up becoming buzz words or concepts in the mainstream society. One cannot help wonder where she got all her insights into the needs of our community and the world. Marcella herself was the epitome of this adage: A good leader leads people to where they want to go. A great leader leads people to places where they feel uncomfortable going.

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An excerpt from the GLAD News magazine
upon Marcella M. Meyer’s retirement…

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Marcella M. Meyer was such a trailblazer that she left a transforming impact on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities. However, all her efforts and victories did not come without blood, sweat and tears. Her brash manner in creating social changes oftentimes ruffled feathers everywhere she went, as she seemed impatient with conventional methods and would rather see concrete results in the shortest time possible. An example of the legacy of her driving force was the acquisition of the current GLAD headquarters / community center at a historical landmark building in a Los Angeles suburb.

Born in Kansas City, Missouri during the Roaring 20’s, Marcella M. Meyer grew up and lived in a world where job opportunities for Deaf people were limited to manual labor such as printing, dry-cleaning, factory work, housecleaning, etc. Also, Marcella’s life paralleled that of the 20th century American history, being a factory worker during the Second World War and holding several different jobs during the booming postwar economy. Additionally, Marcella was one of the people who contributed to the creation of the postwar baby boomer generation by bearing three hearing daughters, with her first husband. During the 1960s, after going through two marriages, she took her daughters to California to start a new life which included another marriage, this time to Lenny Meyer, a teacher at Selaco High School in Downey, California.

Nowhere in Marcella M. Meyer’s life story up to this point was there any indication of the greatness she would achieve later in life, the qualities that would propel her to national and international stages. However, a close examination on the latter part of her life shows that the tipping point most likely came from her three daughters. They got involved in social issues of the day and causes such as the women’s liberation movement, and they brought a social awakening and political awareness to their mother. The rest was HERSTORY!!

Of all her achievements, Marcella M. Meyer often said that her greatest accomplishment was the raising of her three daughters – Jamalee Plank, Coleen Ashly and Michele Balfe. This statement of Marcella’s is not too surprising because of her renowned mothering instincts which she also shared with the Deaf Community. These days, stories from countless Deaf women and men abound about her incredible mentorship which included her pearly words of wisdom, her earthy and sometimes bawdy sense of humor, along with barrels of tough love!

Marcella’s daughters have taken on her superb mothering instincts while raising Marcella’s five grandchildren. Now some of her grandchildren are following Marcella’s example in providing active public service, including a granddaughter becoming an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), a grandson in the military, and an attorney granddaughter who recently argued before the Ohio State Supreme Court.

Marcella M. Meyer was one amazing woman who rose to the challenges of her times and who responded in a splendid manner and turned our community upside down. To give her our due honor and to remember her with reverence, a memorial service will be conducted at the Greater Los Angeles Agency for the Deaf Headquarters (2222 Laverna) on Sunday, June 14th, 2009, starting at 2 p.m. Also, you can read her obituaries in two newspapers, Los Angeles Times and Kansas City Star.

(Editor’s note: After the memorial service honoring Marcella M. Meyer at GLAD, the Los Angeles Times ran another obituary, this time with a feature story on her.)

To Marcella M. Meyer, the last of true Deaf Warriors, we doubt if we will ever see the likes of you again. We shall miss you TERRIBLY!

(Written by Christine “CB” Buchholz and Vikee Waltrip)

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MMM and daughters

Marcella M. Meyer with her daughters —
Coleen Ashly, Michele Balfe and Jamalee Plank

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We at the
Deaf Democrats blog encourage you to visit the condolence book below and add in your comments.
(If you don’t see the condolence book,
click on “# comments” below to open it.)
In observance of our famous tradition,
please keep your comments to 350 words.
Yes, 350 words instead of 250 words this time! Thanks!

And long live Marcella M. Meyer, through each one of us!!

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Voter #70

November 4, 2008

by: Bryen Yunashko

Well, I just got home from voting.  I was voter #70 in my precinct.   There was definitely no line at the pollicing place, which actually has two polling centers in the same building covering two precincts.   You’d expect with all the excitement going on, there’d be a line around the block.  But the media likes to zero in on just a handful of polliing places around the country and say that’s indicative of what’s going on everywhere.   Nor was there any line at one of the 50 early-voting polling places near my home, despite news coverage last week that the lines were going for hours here in Chicago.

In any case, I really didn’t know who I would vote for when I left the house this morning.  I still had strong misgivings about either of the major candidates and I wondered whether my vote really mattered in this lop-sided election.  If I vote Democrat, it is just one more vote in an extremely blue state.  If I vote Republican, it is nothing more than a token vote where it won’t really change the electoral college outcome of Illinois.

Nevertheless, I walked the 4 blocks from my house, feeling quite disappointed that I still had no decision in mind, yet reminding myself that to not vote at all is the most offensive thing I can do as a citizen.  I’ve never missed an election since 1988 and I wasn’t about to start now.  I only hoped the answers would come to me when I saw the ballot.

So, I entered the polling place, and as always, was greeted by the precinct captain inside the door.  Sigh, you know, those guys aren’t supposed to be anywhere near the polling room.  But this happens to be one of the last remaining Chicago machine-politics wards, and such impropriety is on its last leg.

I showed my identification to the polling officials and was handed a very large ballot.  Clutching that ballot, I purposely took my time scanning the room for an available booth because… FOR CRYING OUT LOUD, I still had no idea how I would vote.

I see an empty booth and walk to it.   I fumble with the ballot which is actually larger than the booth’s tabletop!  I take a brief moment to read the flyer explaining that Illiinois has a Constitutional Convention proposal on the ballot and then quickly went to the ballot itself.  I flipped it over so I could vote for the smaller offices first before getting to the ultimate office “President and Vice President of the United States of America.”

Oh lordy,,, I’m getting closer to the top of the ballot, and still no idea.  What am I supposed to do???

Finally, I come to that most feared and revered spot on the ballot.  And in that moment, something magical happened.  As I stared at this section, I instantly knew what my choice was.  It shone out to me and my conscience said, “That’s the one.”

I cast my vote, received my receipt and walked away feeling better than when I had entered the building.  I didn’t vote to make a difference, I didn’t vote because my vote would change the outcome of the election, I voted purely on conscience.  I felt that this was the most significant vote I had ever cast in my life.  And that’s what makes voting a sacred right in a free society.

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Where is the October Surprise?

October 25, 2008

With all the fast-breaking political news on a daily basis these days, one question keeps looming — where is the October surprise? This term usually keeps everyone – including the candidates, their campaign staff, reporters and whoever else – on their toes.

A classic American political term, “October surprise” refers to a news event that can impact the outcome of an election, particularly one for the presidency. This term derives from the fact that elections are held in November, and any event occurring during October has a great potential to swing votes. These October events, as history has shown, can be either manufactured or as occurring beyond anyone’s control.

The October surprise first emerged in October 1968 during the presidential race between Richard Nixon and Hubert Humphrey. The incumbent Democratic President Lyndon Johnson announced a complete bombing halt of North Vietnam, at a time when polls showed the Republican candidate Nixon in a comfortable lead. Johnson explained that progress had been made in the peace negotiations and he believed that the war would be over before the election in November. Well, the war did not end, but this announcement almost erased Nixon’s lead, down to only 500,000 popular votes over Humphrey on Election Day.

Four years later, when President Richard Nixon raced against Senator George McGovern, his Secretary of State Henry Kissinger made a startling announcement that “peace was at hand” with North Vietnam, due to a major breakthrough in the Paris peace negotiations with the North Vietnamese. With the help of this announcement, President Nixon defeated McGovern by a 20-point popular vote margin in one of the largest landslides in American history. The irony of this announcement was that the war continued until 1975, three years later, only after Nixon resigned from office due to the Watergate scandal.

Eight years later (1980), Democratic President Jimmy Carter attempted to create an October surprise by organizing a commando mission into Iran to rescue the American embassy hostages held there, a mission that collapsed when several helicopters crashed into each other, killing some commandoes. Then the Iranian government came out with its own October surprise, that the hostages would not be released until after the American election, a surprise that favored the Republican nominee Ronald Reagan. The hostages were eventually released, on the day of Reagan’s inauguration. This fueled suspicions that Reagan himself might have made a deal with the Iranians prior to the election, suspicions that have never been proven or disproved to this day.

The 1992 presidential election was overshadowed by an October surprise when Caspar Weinberger, former President Reagan’s Secretary of Defense, was implicated in the Iran-Contra scandal, for participating in the transfer of missiles to Iran and then lying to the investigators about his role in this transfer. This announcement jeopardized President George H.W. Bush’s re-election chances, losing to Governor Bill Clinton of Arkansas. The Republicans angrily accused the Independent Counsel Lawrence E. Walsh over the timing of the indictment for political purposes. On Christmas Eve, before leaving the White House, President Bush pardoned Weinberger several days before his trial was scheduled to begin.

A few days before the November 2000 election, a Fox News reporter discovered an old report that Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush had been arrested for drunk driving in Maine in 1976. Bush held a press conference immediately to confirm this incident, resulting in his poll standings being affected greatly. However, this only led up to a very hotly-contested presidential race that ended up in the Supreme Court deciding in his favor against Vice President Al Gore.

In the 2004 presidential election, two October surprises came on the scene. On October 29, the Arabic news agency Al Jazeera aired a video of the terrorist Osama bin Laden who claimed, “Your security does not lie in the hands of Kerry, Bush, or al-Qaeda… Your security is in your own hands.” This is believed to have helped President Bush’s campaign as it thrust the war on terrorism back into the public eye.

The second 2004 October surprise took place on a 60 Minutes broadcast with this remark: “Prince Bandar enjoys easy access to the Oval Office. His family and the Bush family are close. And Woodward told us that Bandar has promised the president that Saudi Arabia will lower oil prices in the months before the election to ensure the US economy is strong on Election Day.” In other words, this promise from the Saudi prince helped deliver a Bush victory.

The most recent October surprise occurred in the last national election two years ago, again through two different events — North Korea’s underground test of a nuclear weapon and the other event being the Mark Foley scandal, in which the Republican congressman resigned over sexual computer messages with underage congressional pages. The Foley scandal broke on September 28, 2006 and dominated the news in early October.

ELECTION YEAR 2008

This year has been rather unprecedented in terms of record-breaking fundraising efforts and voluminous news events, so much events that media pundits are still filtering to see if an October surprise, one or several, has already taken place. On the surface, one can say that it is the economy on the brink of collapse, or the government bailout, which effectively nationalized our financial institutions in the socialist fashion. What about Sarah Palin’s $150,000 wardrobe makeover? Joe the Plumber? A McCain campaign worker lying about being beaten up by an Obama supporter? Or is there a real October surprise still waiting to happen?? But then again, we may not see one in during the month of this October.

Looking back to the last election cycle, news came out that the Saddam Hussein trial verdict would be rendered on November 5, 2006, just two days before the U.S. midterm elections, leading Tom Engelhardt of liberal magazine The Nation to dub it the “November Surprise.” Maybe we ought to wait for a “November surprise” instead of an “October surprise”??

Will it be October? Or November?? Still holding my breath…

**PLEASE KEEP YOUR COMMENTS TO UNDER 250 WORDS!
Thank you- DEAF DEMOCRATS Editors

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WHO WON THE DEBATE?

October 16, 2008

**PLEASE KEEP YOUR COMMENTS TO UNDER 250 WORDS!
Thank you- DEAF DEMOCRATS Editors

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American Politics — Blurring the Lines

October 12, 2008

The presidential race has become more bizarre these days and now taking a dangerous turn. Each day brings in major news at a breakneck speed that it becomes rather difficult to digest news and write up posts for this blog. Also, it seems as if the line between reality and fantasy is becoming blurred in American politics.

Since our last post on this blog, a government report on jobless claims came out for the month of September—159,000 new claims. Then the Congress passed a $700 billion bailout plan with a new name — economic stabilization plan, but this did not prevent the Wall Street from crashing in 8 consecutive sessions, devaluing stocks by 40% in one year and erasing 2 trillion dollars from retirement savings nationwide in 15 months. Also, two debates (both presidential and vice-presidential) took place, revealing even more disturbing aspects of the Republican ticket.

At the second presidential debate, Senator John McCain continued to minimize the Democratic nominee Barack Obama, calling him “that one” and still had not improved his eye contact with Obama. Also during that debate, McCain proposed yet ANOTHER bailout program, this time to buy up “bad mortgage loans” totaling $300 billion. The vice-presidential debate provided more fodder when Governor Sarah Palin created a spectacle of Obama raising the white flag in Iraq. However, she raised multitudes of red flags when she explained the need to expand the role and power of the Vice President of the United States, something ALREADY defined in the United States Constitution.

The tone of the presidential campaign has become more venomous with Senator Barack Obama being blamed by the Republican ticket for everything under the sun. One example was an attempt to connect Obama with terrorists and radicals such as William Ayers, one of the Weathermen from the 1960s when Obama was only 8 years old. Another example was that Obama was really a “foreigner” and a Muslim.

In the meanwhile, Obama and his running mate Senator Joe Biden have focused on the economy, since roughly 60% of the Americans considered the economy as the number one issue these days. Yet the McCain campaign chose to focus on frivolous claims against Obama rather than discuss the economy, claims so frivolous that Senator Biden accused McCain of taking the lowest road possible to the highest office of the land.

McCain’s behavior these days is resembling more and more that of the crazed prison warden Dwight McClusky in the Oliver Stone film, Natural Born Killers, a role memorably played by Tommy Lee Jones. This character was so out of touch with reality and very stuck in his power trip. When a prison riot broke out, he came up with solutions and options that backfired on him. Now the national media is delivering a verdict on McCain’s leadership in two words — erratic and uncertain.

Governor Sarah Palin is another story. Each week brings more and more revelations from the great state of Alaska. At the same time, the American public flocks to the ever-popular TV show, Saturday Night Live, to get a “reality check” through Tina Fey’s impersonation as Sarah Palin. This show is now enjoying a 48% jump in its ratings, its best showing in 7 years.

News coming out of Alaska included a videotape of Sarah Palin being “ministered” by an African pastor who claimed success in “curing” witch doctors, a tape that was repeated continuously on several TV networks. When asked about this videotape, Sarah Palin kept thanking this pastor for putting her on the right track.

Another piece of news from Alaska disclosed Sarah Palin’s husband Todd being involved with Alaska Independence Party for several years, a party that advocated secession from the United States of America. Members of such groups are usually recruited from fundamentalist Christian churches, and these ultra right-wing members are considered domestic terrorists by our government. While the Palins maintained that Todd Palin was no longer a member of this party, it was recently disclosed that Sarah and Todd Palin continued to attend their annual conventions, the last time being last year when she spoke there, telling them to “keep up the good work.” This brings up the question as to where her loyalties lie, although she has been paying lip service of being a proud American citizen.

Then there is the Troopergate, an investigation into whether Sarah Palin misused her power. Upon becoming a governor, Sarah Palin tried to get her former brother-in-law fired as state trooper. When this failed, the public safety commissioner was fired for not following her orders in this attempted termination. During the investigation, she and her husband refused to comply with the subpoena. Later on her husband changed course and testified. As of yesterday, the legislative report out of Alaska concluded that Palin abused ethics, using her office to apply pressure for personal gain. This whole fiasco really disproves the Republican ticket’s claim of being reformers and mavericks.

In several TV interviews, Sarah Palin fumbled through them, providing a wealth of material for Saturday Night Live spoofs. At the vice-presidential debate, she declared that she would not answer questions from the moderator and would address to the American people instead. She also accused the media of limiting her participation in this debate by imposing timed responses like 90 seconds or two minutes! She was starting to come across as the Queen of Blame. In response to Palin’s comments about “expanding” the vice-president’s role, Joe Biden called Dick Cheney as the most dangerous vice-president in the United States history. Still Sarah Palin wants to out-do and outshine Dick Cheney!

When you look at Sarah Palin’s overall behavior, you have to wonder about her attitude towards rules, laws and especially the United States Constitution. Does she really think she is above all of these? Are we witnessing a new dictatorship ticket being formed by McCain and Palin? Their whole tone is now affecting the presidential race.

This past week, someone in the Georgia senator race debate screamed “Bomb Obama.” At several other Republican rallies, people have screamed Traitor, Terrorist, Killer, etc. whenever Obama’s name was mentioned. On Friday, October 10th, in a Minnesota town hall meeting, a woman expressed to McCain her concern about Obama being an Arab; at that, McCain grabbed the microphone from her and said this had to stop and that no one should be scared if Obama became president. For his defense of Obama, McCain got booed by the audience.

Because of these incidents, some conservative newspapers are accusing the McCain/Palin camp of creating a “lynch mob” mentality across the country, and the Republican party leaders are saying “enough is enough,” bearing in mind our nation’s history and our predisposition toward violence. This is a dangerous turn in American politics today where we need to stand ready to express our displeasure.

What McCain DOES NOT UNDERSTAND is that the American voters are an intelligent lot; that all the twisted slogans, accusations and sound bites are working counterproductively; and that he cannot continue to insult our intelligence. Furthermore he does not understand that in this economic crisis, we are now facing the thin breaking point which can beget several forms of violence. This may explain why Obama is now maintaining an 11% lead in national polls. If this tone promoted by the McCain/Palin ticket keeps up, we just may see a Democratic landslide come November 4th. These times of crisis require calm and steady leadership, which McCain has constantly failed to demonstrate and of which Obama is providing shining examples.

The bottom line is that this presidential race has come down to this choice — the Democratic ticket versus the Dictatorship ticket…

**PLEASE KEEP YOUR COMMENTS TO UNDER 250 WORDS!
Thank you- DEAF DEMOCRATS Editors

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My Son, the Republican….Part Two

March 29, 2008

Republican Son part 2

After reading some of your comments regarding the choices my son made, I needed to jump in and clarify a few things.

I am a registered Independent. I choose this because my issues are not ALL one party or another. I like the choices I make, because I believe in them, and want to make the most of my American Citizenship. If I’m part of a smaller, not yet powerful group of people, that is my choice. Come November, the election may boil down to the Independents who choose neither side but make their own decision on who they want to vote for, without having to follow the cattle call of an all-Democrat or all-Republican vote. This is not to say I think Democrats nor Republicans can think for themselves. This is just to say, I prefer to choose some here, and some there.

To that person who ASSUMED I didn’t discuss political issues with my son and his choices, I have to say this, shame on you! Making judgments based on what little info you have! My family has been politically active since as long as I can remember, and we have always discussed the different issues out there, including for me, my own Deaf issues. What we discuss in our family discussion is personal and belongs inside my own family. I simply made the choice to share this, because I felt we all need to show how diverse we are, and even within the close-knittedness of family, there are differences. THAT is the beauty of being an American, and I’m proud of it and of my son.

My baby brother is also a Republican, however, this year he has decided to vote Democrat. Anything would be better than another four years of Republican rule, destroying all things in the eyes of the world. It is because of Bush and his daddy’s cronies that we are suffering the worst economic times, as well as being hated, villified and in some places, killed because we are simply Americans. Am I jumping up and down because my brother made his choice? No, because I know it was a difficult choice for him, and I respect that.

What am I doing on this Deaf Democrat Blog? Why the hell not?!? They are a good group and I support them.

**PLEASE KEEP YOUR COMMENTS TO UNDER 200 WORDS!
Thank you- DEAF DEMOCRATS Editors

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Where is the Deaf Voice in Politics?

March 24, 2008

ANOTHER VLOG BY MELVIN PATTERSON…

Hello again…
I still believe that Deaf and Hard of hearing people will sit down and listen two presidential candidates (1 Democrat and 1 Republican)…. You have a question for that topic, other question for other question and you want.? [fade to black] This video will not playing at this time. Because I spoke with a Political insider through Video Relay service. During the discussion with him, I expressed my concerns, my vision, and my passion by seeing new improvement in relationship between the Politics and the Deaf (apply to all deaf/hard of hearing individuals). I asked him if he is the right person to discuss these concerns. His replied: “YES!”

After I discussed all my ideas, he heard all of them and understood. He asked if he can bluntly say two things open.

An Insider said, “First of all, Do we have any powerful Deaf group that can be identified by our politicians? None.
Secondly, None of Deaf groups that donated a lot of money toward presidential campaign.
My concern is that how do our politicians perceive of Deaf people? They would just say, they, Deaf/Hard of Hearing, are just People with Disabilities. Politicians often would think which laws that are associated/applied to People with Disabilities. Politicians probably would say in a calmly attitude, “Oh, its ADA (American with Disabilities), Education Act, and few others for these People with Disabilities.””

I puzzled but gave an emphasize statement that we are Deaf and Hard of Hearing and we face common problems daily unlikely what other People with Disabilities went through.

An Insider said, “Yes but the point is that do we have a powerful deaf group that focuses on politics for the Deaf and tell Politician like this “We support you if you support us?”

[Silent… thinking…] I said, “We have several organizations…” “Specifically, which one?” Insider said.

[Silent… thinking…] I asked, “Don’t mind to give me an example of what group that can be identified by our politicians?” “Sure” He said. “NRA – National Rifle Association is known for a largest membership and support any president who supports NRA.”

A group of NRA cares of what they do with their guns at home. if something happens at home,
they are protected – you know. Or during leisure time, they can go out for hunting games. That group cares the Gun Right. If any President candidate who says, “I support NRA”, NRA leader would tell NRA members that this candidate is good cause he supports us and please vote him. NRA members will support and vote this candidate.

An Insider said, “Understand that once Politicans hear the name of NRA, they know NRA is one of powerful organization. They can identify that organization. So does the GLAAD – Gay/Lesiban Alliance Against Defamation.”

Any gay goes to work or apply for health insurance, they are protected by law. So if one needs an health insurance but denied because he or she is a gay/lesiban or discriminated at work. The group of attorneys wrote a law to stop that kind of discrimination. That specific law is designed to protect gay/lesiban and they are now seen as equal at any workplace.

So does the organization for Women. If men got handsomely paid and women got small paid, women protested it. Therefore, they got paid equally.

So does the NAACP – National Association for Advancement of Colored People. Anyone discriminated against them because of their color skin. No. No. They are all equal regardless what color skin is.

An Insider said, “Politicians can identify each powerful group and they know what they are but Deaf? Deaf is part of People with Disabilities and is protected by umm ADA, right?”

I said, “Oh… but the group…” An Insider interrupted and said, “Money? If this Deaf group has money to donate to one of our presidential candidates, all press members will be notified. Press members will ask the Deaf group to tell them what this Deaf group is all about, why should President candidate listen this group, etc. So does the Deaf has a large membership? Does it has money for donation ready? Tell me.”

I said, “Oh I see.” I back off a little bit and said, “I really want to have relationship with Politicians but I need to talk with the group of Deaf and Hard of Hearing people about it.” [Silent]

Do we have this group that support either Democratic or Republican and donate to one of them by say, “We promise to endorse you if you support us.” Something like that so President Candidate can announce to the public and say, “I support this Deaf group. I identify this group, I protect this group, I understand their passion, I know their goal and purpose, etc” Group of press member will spread the news about this Deaf group. Press member could say “This Deaf/Hard of Hearing donated a million dollars to one candidate.” Do we have this group? No.

Can we start a new group and name it?

My vision for every deaf/hard of hearing individuals to donate 20 dollars each because 20 dollars times 50 thousand contributors is 1 million dollars. I believe it can happen but… I need your help. Can someone take a lead by form a new group which we can earn money from the public? So if we have this kind of money, a leader of this group will ask candidates with a question “which one of you support us?”

Either party must say, “I support this group with a reason”. After we hear their reasons, we will choose one who we think is represents us. Once we chose one, we endorse one. A lot of reporters/anchors will let America know about us. We have a VOICE. We want new change. New change will give all politicians a new perspective of us – Deaf and Hard of Hearing people.

So… what change? Department of Homeland Security is important. If there is crisis, an emergency crew may ask us to sit down and wait but we are completely lost. Or there?s miscommunicate with Police. Its in cycle of problem. Repeat problem. Call attorney for help and accuse Police of wrongdoing but attorney couldn?t help us because police is powerful.. has a lot of political blackmail and case closed.

Education? Give a large fund to public schools but small fund for deaf programs.

So go on over one reason that is, a point of Communication issue. That communication issue, we face every single day. I want to see this to stop completely. Change it and start improving.

Do you know anyone who is eagerly to take a lead or other organization that is willing to add a separate fund that is designed only for presidential campaign. Announce to our Deaf Community that one is working on the relationship between Politics and the Deaf. Money shows we are serious and want one of presidential candidates to be seriously consider to represent us.

Please help us. Let me know and I will let everyone know. I will join you and help to fund it.

Please.

Thank you.

PLEASE KEEP YOUR COMMENTS TO UNDER 200 WORDS, Thank you — Editor