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Deaf President Now - Essay Example

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Several liberation movements that aimed at freeing the oppressed groups in the society characterized the twentieth century. The deaf were not left behind. Deaf presidents have led Gallaudet University after the protest, which proves that deaf persons are capable of managing themselves. …
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Deaf President Now Introduction Several liberation movements that aimed at freeing the oppressed groups in the society characterized the twentieth century. The deaf were not left behind. Deaf President Now movement is one of the hugest events in the deaf history. The students of Gallaudet University could not be stopped by their hearing defect from presenting their grievances. This essay focuses on the Deaf President Now, a rally that aimed at addressing the needs of deaf students at Gallaudet University. The essay will depict how different groups have represented the deaf people in the society as demonstrated in the television show named deaf mosaic.
In 1988, deaf students at Gallaudet University rejected the appointment of a hearing president it was appropriate that they be led by a deaf president as they were. Although there had been two deaf contestants, the board preferred a hearing president due to the notion that deaf people could not manage their issues effectively. The protest started on march 6 1988 up to march 13 1988 and was led by Greg Hlibok, Tim Rarus, Bridgetta Bourne and Jerry Covel who were students in the institution involved in leadership positions. As I watched the videos, it was demeaning for the board of trustees to make decision regarding the deaf students without even consulting their leaders. The protest resulted in the resigning of the newly elected president who was replaced by a deaf president (Chritiansen and Barnartt 7-12; DCMP Web).
The videos on the deaf people demonstrated the wide variety of talents possessed by deaf persons. When the deaf people set their goals, they are very determined and do their best to achieve them. As I watched the videos, it was clear that the deaf have struggled to eliminate discrimination for a long period. Most of them end up resigning when they feel like their issues will never be addressed (Chritiansen and Barnartt 17-21).
The Gallaudet University protest was very significant since it symbolized that the deaf people and other physically challenged persons could manage themselves. The capabilities of deaf people are often treated with uncertainty. Additionally, it is clear that the deaf education in United States has been neglected for long preventing the deaf persons to compete for equal opportunities with other members of the society (Chritiansen and Barnartt 22-26; DCMP Web).
Teacher David is a revolutionary person, which makes me think he could have been a student at the Gallaudet University during the time of the protest. Additionally, he believes that the deaf are capable of being successful like other groups of people.
Gallaudet University has had three deaf presidents. Dr. Jordan was the first deaf president who was appointed after the 1988 protest. He was president for 20 years and stepped down in 2006. Robert Davila, who reigned as president for the next three years, succeeded Dr. Jordan. After Davila, Alan Hurwitz was appointed in 2010 and remains the president of Gallaudet University up to date (DCMP Web).
Conclusively, the Gallaudet University protest helped in removing the barriers that had disconnected the deaf from the rest of the community. The deaf people have often outdone persons from the hearing community. However, there has been a notion that the deaf are not as capable as members of hearing community are. Deaf presidents have led Gallaudet University after the protest, which proves that deaf persons are capable of managing themselves.
Works Cited
Chritiansen, John and Sharon Barnartt. Deaf President Now!: The 1988 Revolution at Gallaudet University. New York: Gallaudet University Press, 2003. Print.
DCMP. Deaf History and Awareness. 2012. Web. 6 Nov 2012. Read More
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