A Deaf perspective

Valerie Sutton sutton at SIGNWRITING.ORG
Wed Mar 31 16:19:39 UTC 2004

SignWriting List
March 31, 2004

Stephen Slevinski wrote:
> Oops.  Haven't read the deafwin site in a while.  I guess I glossed
> over his words and understood the content.  Mellow drama, overstating,
> and insulting. Yes, Deafwin is bitter, self righteous and a know it
> all.  Sorry for posting the link. He only has half of the answer
> because he ignores ASL and SignWriting. Some of the ideas on my site
> are inspired by his.
> The value of English
> http://www.pudl.info/literacy/english.php


Hello Everyone and Stephen!
I like your site, as you know....And your programming of SignWriting is
what is important to me....So please know I am just giving my own
personal opinion on the English issue...We hearing people really do not
know how it feels to be Deaf, and we don't have a right to tell Deaf
adults what is best for them...So in reading this paragraph, I would
make the comments below....

Stephen's site has this paragraph:

> The Value of English
> Outside of the Deaf community, English is the dominant language.
> Businesses use English, governments use English, and schools use
> English. The amount of information available in English is enormous
> and growing daily.
> This information can be accessed directly through reading and writing,
> or the information can be accessed indirectly through an interpreter.
> Direct access is better; it allows for freedom and independence.


Val's re-write:

In the USA, there are two dominant spoken languages: English and
Spanish. Businesses use English, governments use English, and schools
use English. The amount of information available in English is enormous
and growing daily. And the Spanish spoken language is also growing. It
is estimated that in the Southern California school system, that an
equal amount of hearing children speak Spanish at home, as they do
English. When 50% of the children in an area speak Spanish at home, we
know that in time the US will have two spoken languages, just as they
do in Canada.

And there is nothing wrong with that!

Meanwhile, the Deaf Community tends to use a signed language. Signed
languages are equally good languages as English and Spanish. But Deaf
people are at a disadvantage, because the hearing communities are not
learning their language. Deaf people are put in the difficult position,
of being forced to learn languages they cannot hear themselves. If
hearing people had to learn a language they could not hear themselves,
they would feel very frustrated too!

But there is a solution. If Deaf people become fluent in reading and
writing many languages, both spoken and signed, Deaf-owned businesses
can thrive. And now with a written form for signed languages, called
SignWriting, all languages can be written side-by-side, giving accurate
translations, and inspiring all people to learn to read and write!

Val ;-)

Valerie Sutton
Sutton at SignWriting.org

1. SignWritingSite
Read & Write Sign Languages

2. SignBankSite
Sign Language Dictionaries

3. DanceWritingSite
Read & Write Dance

4. MovementWritingSite
Read & Write Movement & Gesture

5. Shop Online!
Proceeds Donated to Deaf Literacy

Deaf Action Committee for SignWriting
Center For Sutton Movement Writing
an educational nonprofit organization
Box 517, La Jolla, CA, 92038-0517, USA
tel: 858-456-0098....fax: 858-456-0020

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