I have always loved the discovery of new words and ideas. I am also forever curious about the genesis of words and how they came into popular being in a culture. I learned two new words last week that are interrelated: “Audists” and “Audism” and the concept of those words has been around since 1977 and used in print in a scholarly book in 1992. “Audists” are Deaf or Hearing people who think they are superior to others with lesser hearing and that process of a climbing supremacy on the backs of the audibly disabled is called “Audism.” Here are some examples of Audism in action:

  • Poor English skills are because the Deaf cannot hear and because the Deaf’s first language is American Sign Language
  • Deaf children look like animals when they sign with their hands
  • Deaf people shuffle as they walk because they have an inner ear imbalance that causes insecurity in movement
  • The Deaf should not be allowed to drive because they cannot hear emergency sirens or other audible warnings
  • The Deaf are broken and need to be fixed medically with Cochlear Implants or Hearing Aids
  • Only Deaf people who learn to voice English without a “Deaf accent” will find successful employment

Even though those Audist and Audism are not yet printed in a standard dictionary they have power and purchase in a certain narrow context in Deaf Culture that I find quite interesting.

Here is how Gallaudet University frames the history of the use of “Audism” in print:

The first appearance of the term audism in print seems to have been by Harlan Lane in 1992. However, Lane credits the invention of the term to Tom Humphries’ unpublished 1977 doctoral dissertation (Humphries 1977). After Humphries coined the term audism, it laid dormant until Lane revived its use 15 years later. 

It is increasingly catching on, though not yet in regular dictionaries of the English language. Humphries originally applied audism to individual attitudes and practices, but Lane and others have broadened its scope to include institutional and group attitudes, practices, and oppression of deaf persons.

Gallaudet goes on to mark the use of “Audism” in other scholarly texts:

— the belief that life without hearing is futile and miserable, that hearing loss is a tragedy and “the scourge of mankind,” and that deaf people should struggle to be as much like hearing people as possible. Deaf activists Heidi Reed and Hartmut Teuber at D.E.A.F. Inc., a community service and advocacy organization in Boston, consider audism to be “a special case of ableism.” Audists, hearing or deaf, shun Deaf culture and the use of sign language, and have what Reed and Teuber describe as “an obsession with the use of residual hearing, speech, and lip-reading by deaf people.” (Pelka 1997: 33) 

The notion that one is superior based on one’s ability to hear or behave in the manner of one who hears. (Zak 1996)

— an attitude based on pathological thinking which results in a negative stigma toward anyone who does not hear; like racism or sexism, audism judges, labels, and limits individuals on the basis of whether a person hears and speaks. (Humphrey and Alcorn 1995: 85)

— the corporate institution for dealing with deaf people, dealing with them by making statements about them, authorizing views of them, describing them, teaching about them, governing where they go to school and, in some cases, where they live; in short, audism is the hearing way of dominating, restructuring, and exercising authority over the deaf community.

It includes such professional people as administrators of schools for deaf children and of training programs for deaf adults, interpreters, and some audiologists, speech therapists, otologists, psychologists, psychiatrists, librarians, researchers, social workers, and hearing aid specialists. (Lane 1992:
43)

The following image celebrates “Deaf Pride
— the opposite of Audists and their Audism — because the symbol indicates you don’t need an ear that hears to live a full and delicious life:

Deaf Ear

Let’s hope one day soon Merriam-Webster and other standard dictionaries will include a line or two defining Audists and Audism as terms in current usage because identifying discrimination with a precise term instead of generic label gives the cause of equality greater standing against those who choose to repress others with opposite meanings that purposefully misdescribe natural being.

54 Comments

  1. This is a good article that raises important issues in the Deaf community. I hope that one day we won’t need these kinds of labels.

    I see some Audism in everywhere I go, either teaching an ASL class or meeting new co-workers at my job. I have a co-worker who never spoke to me in 4 years and finally spoke to me last week, only because she sees me talking to other hearing co-workers more and more.

    I think it is because I use more hearing culture with my co-workers and since she is not open minded about deaf culture and is comfortable with hearing culture, she is “accepting me.”We do not tell African-Americans to be more “white” or Gay workers to be more “straight” but a deaf person has to be more hearing so s/he will not be judged harshly.
    There are times I meet students in my ASL class who want to learn ASL to “help the Deaf” without realizing you can’t just learn a language without first immersing yourself in the culture that formed the language.

    I often tell my students if the deaf person does not ask or accept your assistance in interpreting something, leave that person alone. There are other ways to communicate with the hearing population and using “voice” is not the only option.

    For that reason I require both immersion in the culture as well as mastery of the grammar when I teach ASL so my students will have a better understanding of all the elements that come together to make up a language.

    I do not believe in the term “can” when it comes to communication skills relating to us Deaf people. Instead of saying “she can’t read lips”, I say “she does not read lips.” It is more of a fact than a negative aspect. To me, this takes away the practice of “Audism.”

  2. Hi Janna Marie!
    Thank you for sharing your exciting thoughts on this important issue and I appreciate you bringing the whole Audism and Audist concept to my attention. This is a good discussion to have about Deafness and labelling and the power of perception from the majority view and the minority view.
    So do you think ASL enforces the Audist view that the Deaf have an inferior language to spoken English or do you think it disproves Audism?

  3. Right now ASL is accessible to the hearing people who want to learn the language. They are learning that sign language is a visual language with its own syntax and specific rules such as detailed facial expressions and body movements.

    The Deaf people in this society have to keep going and keep teaching hearing people that we are human beings and we do have a strong impact in this world. Just because we do not use our voice or do not hear like they do, it does not mean we are creatures or our language is any less good than English or Russian or Chinese.

    Last night we watched the movie “A History of Violence” and there was one part where a character said something like, “They are creatures, they do not speak.” So I thought to myself, “So I am a creature. I am inhuman” because I prefer not to use my voice. This is where more deaf people have to speak out and teach even writers about how they unknowingly degrade people like me.

    There are always people who will stick to their old fashioned point of views and they will not change. I’m hoping there will be less and less of these kinds of people one day.
    I have mixed feelings about the logo you show above with the ear and the diagonal line through it. I understand it is saying that the ear has no hearing and it intended to be a positive image for the Deaf community.

    I see it and sometimes feel it means “no hearing” and it is a negative thing. It is the line across from ear that bothers me. Like when there are other logos such as “no smoking”or “no eating.”

    “No” is negative term. “Not hearing” is not a negative term to me but “no ears allowed” is negative because the Deaf community is happy to welcome in the Hearing who want to be a part of our culture.

    Why can’t we create a logo without that negative line? Why can’t we have a “Deaf” logo with a positive image?

    Okay, that was fun but no more questions. I’m hungry and you owe me lunch. Janna has left the building!

  4. Thanks for the excellent comment, Janna!
    I take your point about the image and I think you’re right. It can be interpreted as the negative opposite of Audism and that’s important to note.
    Okay, let’s go do lunch!
    😀

  5. Dear Janna and David —
    Okay I have a question about my nephew. He has a hearing loss in one ear and is pretty much deaf in the other. His parents want him to have a cochlear implant and keep him in a hearing school. He is 8. He knows some signs and tells me he would like to learn more but his parents do not let him hang out with other deaf kids and the doctos say if he uses sign language he will never master his implant.
    Where do you two come down on this?

  6. Hey there.
    You know, I’d never heard this term up till now, and omg it makes me angry! I suffer from a hearing loss, as do two of my three Children, which has resulted in them having to wear Hearing Aids. They will need them for the rest of their lives.
    But what gives Audists the right to slap Labels like this on People?? Isn’t this just to cover their own insecurities? Like racism, or being sexist to name just a couple.
    My life isn’t, nor ever has been, miserable as a result of suffering from a hearing loss – although I should point out that I’m not Deaf completely, and neither are my Children. We are “hard of hearing” as it’s termed in the UK.
    The results of tests that proved my Daughter and my youngest Son needed Hearing Aids devastated me. I felt like it was all my fault, and that they’d be picked on in school for being “different”. But nothing could be further from the truth. A little girl almost moved me to tears one day when she was playing with my daughter before going into class. I was calling my daughter’s name to get her in for class, but she didn’t hear me. So this little girl went and grabbed her and said your Mummy’s shouting to you. Then hand in hand, they walked over to this little girls’ mom and she said Mummy, this is —-(my daughter), she’s my friend and she is hard of hearing. My daughter walked into class with a big smile on her face and since then, they’ve been inseperable. She proved to me that kids aren’t always cruel, and indeed my daughter’s friends all look out for her – I hope the same can be said of my youngest Son when he starts full time school.

  7. Hi SimmeringInSeattle —
    This is a typical point of view from parents. They think the child will lose their voice or become less human if they learn sign language. For me, I learned ASL and took speech class at the same time growing up. It helped me become a secure person & to make decisions for myself as I became an adult. What is great about your 8 year old nephew is that he is interested in sign language. That means he already understands that sign language can be a part of his many communication skills. Why take that away from him? Let him find out what is best for him, not what is best for his parents.

  8. Hello Dawn-
    I love it that you were able to share that story about your daughter and her friend. I think that is another reason why parents do not want their kids to sign because kids can be crueler than adults sometimes. Kids make fun of names, the color of our hair, & how we dress. Your daughter’s friend is not only a solid friendship for her, but a strong support system she needs in her life. I think that’s really cool. There is a children’s book that Academy Award winner Marlee Matlin wrote several years ago. Marlee, as you may know, is Deaf and she wrote a book about a Deaf child meeting a hearing child & they became best friends. The title of the book is “Deaf Child Crossing” and while it says the story is fiction, it is based on her real life growing up.

  9. Hiya Simmering!
    Gosh, I feel for you and I hope you will find a way to be an impartial advocate for your nephew. It seems like he is interested in sign and to expose him to a few experiences in the Deaf community will only enrich his life and not demean it.
    Take the advocacy position that exposure to everything leads to big things while narrow expression of the self condemns one to a small life.

  10. Hi Dawn!
    I had no idea there was hearing loss in your family. I commend you for accepting it and not making it a bad thing for you or your children.
    Is there any pressure from the medical community to implant your children — or you! — with Cochlear Implants?
    http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/hearing/coch.asp
    In America, implanting Deaf children — and now infants as young as four months old — is the preferred method of treatment to surgically “fix” Deaf (and Hearing Impaired) ears.

  11. Thanks so much you two. It looks like I better start standing up for my nephew. I will be his advocate as best I can and refer his parents and his doctors to this article and conversation if they give me any guff about it.

  12. Hi David and Janna,
    Thank you for empowering us about “Audists and Audism.”
    At times I think, we, those who claim to be able to use their five senses perfectly are the most incapable of doing so. We may hear, but we don’t listen. We are way too eager to talk, to keen to get our message across, just because we can talk. What a waste of energy.
    If we could speak less probably we could become more sensitive and the world could be much peaceful place to live.

  13. Thanks too for enlightening me about those words, not heard them before either.
    My Dad’s parents were both hearing and vocally challenged (they always called themselves “deaf & dumb”) and it never stopped them leading rich full lives and making the most of every opportunity. They raised five hearing kids and belonged to a plethora of social clubs and had loads of friends.
    Grandma could sign in British and American sign language because she had British and American deaf friends at the social club for the deaf she went to.
    Of course I am sure they encountered discrimination because of their deafness but it wasn’t something they made a big fuss of. they just got on and enjoyed life.

  14. I finally got hearing aids this year after saving up my money for a very long time. They are about $2,000 each and to quote my style conscience brother in law, “Why did you get the orthopedic shoe version of hearing aids?” Meaning, damn those things are big, clunky and ugly!
    I’m glad I got them. I have about 40% hearing loss which isn’t enough to qualify as “deaf” but “hearing impaired”. Whatever. I now understand why some deaf people don’t want to wear hearing aids (it’s a loud loud world!) and why some do (music is great!). I only wear them half a day at work and when my teenage daughter deems it necessary to speak in complete sentences.
    I have noticed that my co-workers talk to me more since I don’t always bark, “What? Excuse me?” anymore. But, I’ve noticed that those people who don’t know me treat me as if I am stupid. Some people equate deafness with mental deficencies.
    Serendiptously ran across your blog while surfing and listening (truly) to NPR’s radio bit on this same topic you posted. Unfortunately, I was too lazy to put in my aids so didn’t get everything that was said.
    Thanks!

  15. Hi Mik!
    We use “Deaf and Does Not Speak” today instead of “Deaf and Dumb.” Was your dad involved in the Deaf community beyond his parents in any way? As a CODA — a Child of a Deaf Adult — he might have made a wonderful interpreter. Did your dad learn to sign?
    British Sign Language, or BSL, is fascinating. I think Janna has had some exposure to or experience with it in the field.
    Discrimination is tough. You’re right that you either let it kill you or you find a way to live around it.

  16. Hey Maritza!
    I am happy you decided to get hearing aids! Yes, they are incredibly expensive. I know several people who have spent $8,000.00 USD for aids in both ears. Radio star Don Imus said the other day on his show that he spent $12,000.00 USD for new aids for both ears. That’s an ironic result of the danger of a 40 year in radio – you slowly become deafened because you had your headphones set much too loud for four hours a day.
    I hope your insurance plan helped cover some of the cost. Your brother-in-law deserves a punch in the ear for that rotten comment! The line between insensitivity and being funny and inflicting cruelty is a thinner line than many of us realize.
    It’s great with your 40% hearing loss that you don’t worry about labels. If you decided with at 40% loss to join the Deaf Community and learn ASL so you could communicate with others you would be welcomed. Unfortunately, in the Hearing World, any sort of sensory loss is directly marked as bad and different and separating and that can cause pain in community and communication.
    You’re right there is a LOT of environmental sound poisoning! Some offices — with radios and unrestricted voices — are louder than the street below with cars and busses and the churn of people. I think that’s why many work places allow people to use iPods and other personal music devices — so they can find a little bit of personal quiet in an ever-loudening world that is their office cubicle.
    Your point about Deafness equaling a mental deficiency to some people is important and it comes out of the belief if someone needs to communicate on paper or in mime or in home signs or in Pidgin-Signed-English that they are in some way inferior to the mainstream majority way of communicating. We all have our heaps and our losses — some of them are just not visible to the naked eye or ear.
    I searched the NPR website for “Audism” but didn’t find anything. If you can find a link to share that would be super!
    Thanks so much for stepping up. I appreciate it very much because staying low and keeping quiet is the easier path to resistance. To stand up and say, “Hey… this is what I know…” risks exposing yourself to ridicule from some like your brother-in-law but you service a much greater good by sharing your confidence instead of hoarding in fear.

  17. My bro-in-law’s remark was meant to illustrate that for $4,000 USD all you get are some ugly ass low tech hearing aids. I didn’t take offense at all. There are some super sleek ones that are extremely costly with all sorts of programmable features and are pratically invisible. I don’t care if mine are day-glo green, I wear them (part time) proudly. Bro in law is a fashion facist but there seems to be one in every family!
    My insurance didn’t cover any part of the cost of the hearing aids. When I call our benefits administrator to enquire, she explained that our plan will only cover the cost of hearing devices only if, “…you have total and sudden hearing loss.” Not being able to resist, I said, “What? What? Oh my god, I have total and sudden hearing loss!”. She hung up on me.
    I will search the NPR New York City site for the program. The website usually lists the programs a day or two after they have aired. If I find it, I will post it here (or should I say…post it hear).
    By the way, my father is totally deaf in one ear, partially in another from a childhood accident. He swears he’s not deaf, it’s other people who talk too quietly! Total and complete denial about his deafness. But that’s another story…

  18. Found it!
    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5388933
    If this doesn’t work it is on Weekend Edition section of the website. Here’s a snippet:
    Education
    New President Faces Opposition at Gallaudet
    by Howard Berkes and Joseph Shapiro
    Enlarge Mannie Garcia
    Gallaudet University students protest the choice of Jane Fernandes as president-elect at a May 2 sit-in at the school in Washington, D.C. AP
    All Things Considered, May 6, 2006 · For the second time in two decades, students at the world’s only university for the deaf are protesting the selection of the school’s new president. Eighteen years ago, similar demonstrations demanded a deaf president for a deaf university. This time, the issues are slightly different. The new president, Jane Fernandes, was born deaf. What lies behind student objections?

  19. Hi Maritza!
    I understand you need to defend your brother-in-law but others need to know — who may not know better — that kind that of comment, no matter the intent, serves no one’s best interest.
    The larger hearing aids are MUCH MORE powerful than the in-the-ear hidden type of aid. You did the right thing and purchased the very best aids at what is an excellent price even though it may not seem like that now.
    I know of insurance plans that will cover up to $2,400.00 USD per-ear 100% for aids every four years. It’s fantastic. If you are a child the aids can be replace every two years at that per-ear price — and even more frequently — if an audiologist deems it necessary. I’m sorry you had to foot the entire bill.
    Thank you for the NPR link! It’s the “Deaf President Now!” protest all over again! What a wild story. History truly repeats itself. I’m going to have to read up on it all now and I’m sure I will get no sleep tonight!
    😀
    My mother is totally Deaf in one ear due to Scarlett Fever when she was a child. She lip-reads and “passes” for Hearing but in many ways she is Deaf and definitely unable to fulfill the stereotypical suite of full “Hearing” communication. She only purchased a hearing aid in her 50’s. She does not use it every day. She misses out on a lot of communication because she is too vain to wear her in-the-ear aid.

  20. Kathakali –
    I guess that is why many hearing people feel “superior” when it comes to topics related to deafness because they think since they have all the 5 senses, they are superhuman! It’s funny that you talked about some people who talk and talk and talk and just do not listen. My pet peeve is people who do not take advantage of their eyesight. When they are driving on the road, they think they can talk on the cell phone and drive at the same time. I’m sure you’ve seen many accident articles in the newspaper and it is because they think they can do two or more things at the same time while driving. Even when they are not using their cell phones while they are at the stop light, people depend so much on their hearing; they don’t realize that the red light has changed to green light until somebody behind them honks at them. Using your eyes is “hearing” also.

  21. Mik-
    Your grandparents seemed to be a strong couple. Yes, I know they had to go through discrimination because all deaf people do. I think perhaps they did not want to share their negative experiences with you because you were a child or it is something they do not want to discuss with their family members.
    British Sign Language is beautiful. When I first moved to New York I met a few British Deaf and I love it when they teach me their signs. It is very different from ASL. I deal with a lot of Russian Deaf in my job and WOW is Russian sign language different from ASL in so many ways. I love learning these different sign languages.

  22. Maritza-
    I love it that you will not change your audible devices for someone else. You do what is best for you.
    I thought it was interesting that you stopped barking when you got your hearing aids. But I wonder if the hearing people noticed you are frustrated in communicating with them while you were barking? That is what happened to me.
    David tells me that I look so furious when I do not understand him when he signs. I’ve learned not to lower my eyebrows so much. It makes me look angry. So I had to learn to look “soft” and when I do that, I see that hearing people don’t mind repeating for me.
    When I need someone to repeat what they’ve said, I would raise my eyebrows and say “Sorry?” meaning please repeat it. I find it interesting that we all have to find ways to communicate, not only verbally but with our body language.

  23. Hi Janna,
    Thank you for your response!
    I agree with you, 100%.
    Along with that I would like to add one more point – not being able to interpret even verbal communication correctly – forget about sign language. At times we are so busy proving our own point that we don’t even care to listen to people and in some cases we come too strong on others or we just ignore people.
    I used to react like a brick-head (this is a straight translation from my mother tongue for the word “dumb”!) before. And I failed to read between the lines ‘n’ number of times in my life. Just because I am an internal processor I ponder on things in my life and later find out that my “instant reaction” didn’t convey the right message I wanted to convey.
    If, we, the so called “superhuman” fail to interpret the right meaning of a verbal communication most of the time, how come we claim to be superhuman and why?

  24. Kathakali –
    Yes, I know what you mean about people who are so busy wanting to prove their points and not listening to others’ feedback. It’s almost like they just need to hear their own voice.
    I think the “superhuman” would focus on their 6th sense, along with the 5 senses if our society valued it. Only 5 senses are written and put together and as long as we think they are functional, we do not label them as a disability. I would call the 6th sense “thinking process” and that is where we “read” people (like you said on the 2nd paragraph). I’m sure others could find a better term. It would be so neat to add a 6th sense (I’m sure we have more than 6) to our 5 popular senses.

  25. Thanks for your wonderful comment, Dawn!
    Cochlear Implants, so the doctors say, are most effective when they are implanted as early as possible so the child can gain better exposure to processing environmental sounds and spoken language sounds. To wait until the child is able to make a decision is too late to do the most good.
    You might want to explore getting Hearing Aids. You probably have no idea how much you’re missing. Maybe you don’t need that extra sound information, but it’s nice to be in absolute control of your hearing decisions one way or the other.
    When I was young I had to get glasses. My eye doctor told my mother at the time – with me in the room! — “His eyes are so bad he doesn’t even know there are leaves on trees!”
    Now I took that statement as a personal insult that I was stupid and didn’t know trees had leaves and I rebelled against him and my glasses because of his insensitivity for several years.
    If he had only said, “He’ll love being able to see leaves on trees from far away!” — I would have leapt at the chance to see trees in that way — instead of a blur — because I love trees. When it comes to children and their best interest, we all have to be careful of what we say and how we protect them because sometimes even the smallest comment can become a gigantic obstacle.

  26. My Dad, uncle and all the aunts can sign perfectly. Us kids tended not to learn it was well as we should have. We could never keep up with the grandparents “talking” so fast on their hands.

  27. In a recent post you stated:
    In America, implanting Deaf children — and now infants as young as four months old — is the preferred method of treatment to surgically “fix” Deaf (and Hearing Impaired) ears.
    A great video to watch is “Sound and Fury”. It addresses the Coclear Implant issue and all the side effects. Well, most of them, anyhow. Like most issues that werent a few years ago, today’s issues will engender offshoot issues in time.
    I would imagine you have sources for the video. A couple of mine are:
    (a veritable treasure chest for me, of books, music, and videos);
    the Dept of Education’s Captioned Media Program website.
    Some resources for learning history of the deaf community:
    “When The Mind Hears, A HISTORY of the DEAF”, a book by Harlan Lane.
    Lane quotes Robert P McGregor, first President of the National Association of the Deaf:
    “The utmost extreme to which tyranny can go when its mailed hand descends upon a conquered people is the proscription of their national language….What heinous crime have the deaf been guilty of that their language should be proscribed?”
    Another good book by Harlan Lane is “The Mask of Benevolence”.
    “The Other Side of Silence”, a book by Arden Neisser.
    Another book, “The Mind Tree”, a book about Tito Rajarslin Mukhopadhyay, a nearly non-verbal youth suffering from autism, enables the reader to consider another pain and rejection filled life caused by lack of a ‘normal’ speaking ability.
    The video “Johnny Belinda” is an OLD Hollywood with Jane Wyman and Lew Ayres, Charles Bickford and Agnes Moorehead &c. Yes, people REALLY DID enjoy watching B&W movies!
    And finally, “Children of a Lesser God”, a simply great video, the four letter words and minor nudity notwithstanding. Marlee Matlin won an Oscar for ‘Best Actress’ for her role in this 1980’s offering.
    An example of the internal strife and confrontational attitudes in the deaf community (just like any other community–DEAF FOLKS MUST BE NORMAL!!) is displayed by the following quote (and I’m sorry I dont know where I got it):
    “Our society is sufficiently rich and enlightened that we are prepared to sympathize with marginal people who endorse our norms but, for resons beyond their control, cannot live up to them. The deaf actress Marlee Matlin won the admiration of many hearing people when she chose to speak aloud on national television, rather than throught an interpreter, on receiving the Oscar for her role as a culturally deaf person in the film Children of a Lesser God. By the same act she incurred criticism from some members of the American deaf community. For them, in those few halting words she negated the principles of the story she had so brilliantly enacted; she chose symbolically not to accept the award as a member of the deaf community; and she seemed to endorse the view that any amount of English is better for deaf people than the most eloquent American Sign Language.”
    How it all makes my heart ache….
    kenn 1RmSchlHse
    10 maY2.006 AD

  28. hello everyone.
    my name is isabel ,age 37, i am deaf an english ..
    nice meet you all..hope this will be usefull for me ?..
    how me hope hear guys actress this marlee martin ?..
    it’s i dont know join this wonder what i have sign language can signing in the old from me .. tell me say “laugh”i am acting give me see at read is mail-full on the people all the biggerst on more?.thank you and hope hear you guys me ..have nice day!..
    isabel (deaf)..

  29. hi David
    the symbol – slash across the ear – is not really the Deaf pride symbol …. maybe in the UK?
    We either use signs or eyes/hands as symbol of deaf pride. check http://www.ccsdeaf.com – they have fascinating new symbols constructed through 4 dimensional sensing machine (i don’t knoow the big word for that!) to show how the signs moved.
    enjoyed your blogs!
    Noni

  30. Audism is in full operation in Columbus, Georgia, U.S.A.
    I have been battling audists since 1994 who are lawyers, bankers, judges, accountants, financially interested relatives who succeeded in driving me to the poor house by defaming my character as “Disabled”, not as DEAF. They use “Disabled” because according to their “modified law”, being disabled makes anyone legally disqualified from administrative and financial responsibilities.
    Their restraints and coerciveness enforced onto me for 13 years are inhumane, cruel and vindictive.
    Non-intervention from the Public and from Deaf Organizations like NAD is more inhumane, more cruel and inexcuseable.

  31. I am currently a Communication Disorders student working on my Master’s in Speech-Language Pathology. I am writing a paper on Audism, and thoroughly enjoyed your article! You laid it out very simply, which always makes reading/research more enjoyable for me! Thanks!