Friday, May 31, 2019

The Silent Natural

A new film called The Silent Natural debuts tonight in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. It tells the story of William Ellsworth “Dummy” Hoy who played in the baseball major league from 1888 to 1902. Hoy slugged "41 home runs, 605 stolen bases and one game in which he threw out three baserunners at home plate from the outfield." Read more in the Columbus Monthly here or watch the trailer for the film below.

In a Silent World

A documentary called In a Silent World tells the story of hearing parents who learn about Deaf culture through their deaf daughter. The 90-minute film is available on Amazon Prime Video and there's more information at the film's website here.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

The connection between Monks & Sign Language

National Geographic Australia explores the connection between the vow of silence taken by monks some 500 years ago helped in the development of sign language. National Geographic Australia has more here.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Mocked & Harassed for Being Hard of Hearing

Massachusetts is paying $95,000 to a former employee who says he was mocked and harassed and eventually fired for being hard-of-hearing. Ralph Claudomir worked for the Massachusetts Environmental Police in charge of managing the offices where people register their boats and recreational vehicles. According to MassLive, his request for accommodations was denied" and he was "yelled at during meetings and 'humiliated, degraded and harassed' due to his disability. He was given written warnings for speaking too loudly." Read more about the lawsuit here.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Poetry Slams for the Deaf in Israel


Forward takes a look at a poetry slam in for the Deaf in Isreal. Read the full story here.

Netflix Show features Deaf Teen

Netflix’s new apocalyptic teen drama called The Society features a deaf teenager played by Sean Berdy. Everyone in a small New England town disappears. Berdy's character offers a steady moral center. You may remember him from the family drama Switched At Birth.  He explains in an interview with TIME magazine why he left acting for a time after that show came to an end.  Read the story here.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

A new social network for signers

AN Israeli-based company is launching a new social network for signers. Joseph Geliebter, founder of SignTalk Foundation, says:
SignTalkers gives members of the signing community – both hearing and deaf – a space for thoughtful, thriving, and engaging conversation. Unlike other social media platforms, this exclusive space will serve to provide a home away from home to meet, share and interact with members of the signing community around the world.
Using the site requires registration. You'll find the SignTalkers website here and more information in a article published by an Israeli newssite here.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Starbucks opens Signing Store in China

image from Starbucks.com
Starbuck's third signing store is open—in China. in Guangzhou's Yuexiu district. Besides using sign language to communicate with customers, the store will offer sign language classes and coffee workshops in sign language. Starbucks has opened signing stores in Kuala Lumpur and Washington, DC (near Gallaudet University). At those stores, and the new one, baristas wear aprons with sign language that spells the word Starbucks. Belinda Wong, chief executive officer of Starbucks China, said:
The new Signing Store is an example of how we are building inclusive environments and careers for our partners. This store truly creates a sense of belonging for everyone and is a strong testament to our continued commitment to building a more diverse and inclusive working environment.
Read more in the company's press release here.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

A Deaf Immigrant is Student of the Year

Blanca Ceja-Salas is 2nd in the bottom row in the photo
Image from mccd.edu

Read more here: https://www.mercedsunstar.com/news/local/education/article230437094.html#storylink=cpy
A deaf immigrant is Student of the Year at California's Merced College. Blanca Ceja-Salas is graduating with a degree in photography and a 3.7 GPA. Board of Trustees President Carmen Ramirez is quoted in a press release as saying:
To have Blanca be the Student of the Year is an impressive flag for what Merced College is and how it transforms lives. We know students come here, they prepare themselves and they move on. But for Merced College to be the kind of place where someone that’s not your typical student can come in and not just do OK, but do something amazing, speaks to the kind of campus we have. Blanca hasn’t just overcome physical limitations, but language barriers and immigration issues as well. She’s an amazing young woman and we’re proud to have her as the Student of the Year.
Read the press release here.  

Deaf Access to Legislative Sessions Debated in Florida

Florida's failure to provide captioning on videos of its legislative sessions has led to a legal battle that has made its way to an appeals court. The National Association of the Deaf and activist Eddie Sierra sued, claiming it's an ADA violation. Lawyers for the state claim captioning the sessions is just too expensive and the lawmakers would rather not have a video feed at all than have to pay the cost of captioning. Read more about what's at issue in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in a Courthouse News article here.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

School for the Deaf Campus Sold

The Sioux Falls Ministry Center is buying the South Dakota School for the Deaf campus for $6.9 million. The Center will get the building as well as the football and track field. Read more in the Argus Leader here.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

FCC Debates Live Captioning for News

The FCC recently held a forum on best practices for TV news closed captioning. TV Technology reports that forum included not only the FCC but broadcasters and the Deaf community. Read more about it here.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Seattle bar owner upset over new captioning law

image from Google Maps
The owner of the Marco Polo Bar and Grill in Seattle says that while he'll turn on the captioning on the TVs in the bar if someone asks, he doesn't like the city council requiring him to do so. Matt Miera told KIRO radio, that "the closed captioning ordinance, like so many of the city’s recent regulations, is just 'another way to reach into my pocket and take more money.'" The ordinance takes effect later this year and will fine businesses that fail to turn on captioning for everything TV they have on display. Miera asks, “Is the city of Seattle going to require us to have a translator there, to do sign language for the music that’s playing over the jukebox?” Read the full story here.

Deaf Man Shot & Dismembered

A Kansas City man has been arrested for allegedly shooting and dismembering the body of a deaf man. Police say Colton Stock also set the remains of Matthew Calkins on fire. Calkins graduated from the Kansas School for the Deaf in 2002. FOX-4 Kansas City has a video report (or read the story here)

Monday, May 13, 2019

Deaf actress dies on this date

from CBS Photo Archive
One of the first deaf actresses to have a major role on a TV series died on this day one year ago (May 13, 2015) in Fremont, California. Audree Norton was 88 years old.

A founding member of The National Theatre of the Deaf, Norton appeared on the CBS show Mannix in 1968 and later on The Streets of San Francisco and Family Affair. When she was cut out of a role just because she was deaf, Norton filed a complaint with the Screen Actors Guild. John Schuchman suggests in his book Hollywood Speaks: Deafness and he Film Entertainment Industry that the decision ended her Hollywood career--but opened the door to others.

Norton lost her hearing to spinal meningitis at the age of two and attended Gallaudet University. A memorial service was held at the California School for the Deaf. You can read her obituary here.
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Stephen Colbert's Ear

image by
NEIL GRABOWSKY
Comedian Stephen Colbert was born on this day (May 13) in 1964. What many people do not know about the comedian is that he is deaf in one ear. When he was young a surgery left him without an ear drum in his right ear. He explains, "I always wanted to be a marine biologist but then I had this ear problem. I have no ear drum. So I had this operation at the Medical University when I was a kid. Now I can't get my head wet. I mean, I can, but I can't really scuba dive or anything like that. So that killed my marine biology hopes."

Friday, May 10, 2019

Google announces new captioning app

There's a new captioning app that will soon be available for Andriod phones that's getting some good reviews. Live Caption works for audio and video. Here's a video that show it in action.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Baseball team to honor Deaf Fans

A minor league baseball team is hosting a Deaf Awareness Night next month. This will be the third time the Pawtucket Red Sox have honored deaf fans of the Rhode Island team. The team will wear jerseys with their name spelled out on June 7. Gallaudet baseball coach, and former major leaguer, Curtis Pride, will take part in the festivities. WPRI-TV has a video report below or you can read the story here.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Partnership between NTID & Chinese University

Rochester's NTID (National Technical Institute for the Deaf) is partnering with a Chinese university to establish "a cultural and educational partnership between the two institutions." Changchun University is exploring a joint degree program in graphic design and 3D graphic technology. NTID president Gerry Buckley says, “These partnerships are instrumental in giving our students global enrichment experiences that will make them even more marketable upon graduation.” Read more about it here.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Deaf umpire in Jersey

Jonathan Breuer is a softball and baseball umpire in North Jersey who says, “I want to show the world what deaf people can do." NorthJersey.com has a video report.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

On this date in history: Frederick Barnard dies

Frederick Barnard
It was on this date in 1889 that Frederick Barnard died at the age of 80 (May 5). His full name was Frederick Augustus Porter Barnard. The deaf American educator was quite the renaissance man. Besides teaching college students, he was a scientist, writer and mathematician. Barnard served as president of the University of Mississippi, then took the same position at Columbia College in New York City (it later became a university). The year he died, an affiliated college for women was established and named Barnard College in his honor. He is acknowledged by historian of deaf history as someone who made a significant contribution to deaf education.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Getting to know the Gally Baseball Coach

image of Curtis Pride from MLB.com
Former major league outfielder Curtis Pride has been the head coach of Gallaudet University's baseball team for 11 years. He tells the Washington Times, "“The biggest challenge is recruiting. I probably have the most difficult job of college coaches for recruiting. I recruit deaf or hard-of-hearing players. There are not that many out there. Once I get the player I have to develop the skill to get them up to the college level.” Pride led the Bison to one of their best seasons ever in 2012. Gallaudet won a school record 25 games. When he was in the majors, Pride played for six teams including the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Los Angeles Angels, Detroit Tigers, Montreal Expos and Atlanta Braves. Read more about Pride's impact on the
students here.

NBC Show Episode on Cochlear Implants

image from NBC video
In a recent episode of the NBC show New Amsterdam (titled Happy Place) a deaf patient with a cochlear implant wants it removed. The patient is overwhelmed by sounds and upset over the drift it has caused in her closest relationship. Watch it here.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

A First for a Deaf Person in Maine

Regan Thibodeau will soon become the first deaf person from Maine to earn her PhD in the state. She will graduate from the University of Southern Maine with a PhD in Public Policy. Thibodeau already holds a Masters from Columbia and teaches classes at USM in ASL, Deaf culture and interpreting. WCSH-WLBZ/TV has a video report.