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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Oct. 30, 2006 / 8 Mar-Cheshvan 5767

Listening to the deaf

By Clarence Page


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | To "mainstream" or not to "mainstream"? That is the question that energizes the student and faculty protests at Gallaudet University.


The return of campus protests to America's only liberal arts university for the deaf and hearing-impaired has been obscured by other big stories in Washington these days. But, in many ways, the complicated and emotion-charged politics of Gallaudet reveal a much larger story than this city's partisan politics do. It is a saga about identity, the many ways we humans see ourselves as individuals or as groups, and how far we will go to keep our groups intact.


"Mainstreaming" is the integration of a minority group, like the disabled, into the social mainstream. But, to many deaf activists, that's a condescending view, a form of "audism" by us hearing supremacists. They see themselves not as "disabled," but only "differently abled." In the new deaf culture, Gallaudet is more than a school. It is a Mecca of deaf identity, a sense of selfhood that often feels under siege from outside and from inside their own non-hearing community.


Some alumni have flown in from as far as Australia to join the protests. More than 709 "tent city" protests have been held across the country, according to Deafeye.com.


As one Gallaudet official explained, imagine America with only one school for blacks or Catholics or Jews and you can get a small idea of what a big deal the college's protest is in the world of the non-hearing. Deaf culture rose up angrily in 1988 when an earlier generation of Gallaudet students brought about the appointment of I. King Jordan, the school's first deaf president since its founding in 1864.


Now Jordan is leaving and the appointment of his replacement has ignited a new round of protests that have kicked the debate up a notch. A big notch. The incoming president, Jane Fernandes, has been deaf since birth, but read lips until she learned sign language at age 23. To those who have been signing before they learned English, her fluency is a little off, some say. In a community of people who grow up getting left out of many conversations, the way you communicate takes on added importance. It serves to define your identity.


Out of the Gallaudet conundrum a political vocabulary has emerged with a familiar-sounding ring: "How deaf" is she? Is she "deaf enough"? Is she "playing the deaf card" against her critics-or vice versa? These phrases sound familiar. As a black American, male from the Midwest, I understand the power of identity. Black Americans of my generation care a lot about identity because we engaged in so many struggles, public and personal, to have one that we could call our own-with pride.


Identity is how we see ourselves. You can identify with conditions of birth over which you had no control. Your race, you ethnic group, your hometown. Or you can identify with conditions of choice: your occupation, your religion, your neighborhood.


For those who identify themselves as deaf, modern science has given some a way out. An operation called a "cochlear implant" can help some of the deaf to hear, which means they would leave the community of the deaf.


Heather Whitestone McCallum, the first deaf Miss America, has had the devices implanted in both ears. But not all of the deaf greet this scientific development happily. Those who struggle fiercely for cultural purity see the cochlear implant as "cultural genocide," a threat to their numbers. In the culture of the deaf, modern medical technology poses a special dilemma.


Such is the double-edged nature of identity. In a vast, complex and uncertain world, our familiar culture gives us a comfort zone, one that has its own gravitational pull. It can be liberating or it can be as treacherous as the pull of Michael Corleone's family business, which is organized crime, in "The Godfather" trilogy. Every time he tries to get out, he laments, it pulls him back in.


I advise young African-American college students to leave their comfort zones once in a while and familiarize themselves with the larger world in which they can play a valuable part. I advise the same for those who feel a bit too comfortable sometimes in the world of deaf culture.


As one authority quoted by the Web site DeafCulture.com notes, the culture "encompasses communication, social protocol, art, entertainment, recreation (e.g., sports, travel, and Deaf clubs), and worship. It's also an attitude, and, as such, can be a weapon of prejudice—"You're not one of us; you don't belong ." That's the danger of identity movements.


When you divide the world between "us" and "them," even in reaction to prejudices, you run the risk of developing dangerous prejudices of your own. There's a larger world out there, kids. Get to know it. Give it a chance to know you.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

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