Deafhood unheard

Thought Repair

There’s a poignant sign to start my story if I were telling it in ASL. You take your index finger like a hook, and drag it across your forehead. It figuratively suggests having something scarred in your brain, and translates to “I’ll never forget.” The reminder is of the importance of Deafhood, and lately, of its missing role in the cochlear implant debate.

About five years ago in a San Fransisco office building I sat at a table translating with my parents on one side and a salesperson on the other. He pushed his product on my folks while we lost our afternoon. At first I hedged his aggressive tactics in my translations, and my parents sat confused by the half-filtered sales pitch and by my obvious frustration. Eventually his tactics became more than I could keep up with, and pressured to keep translating I submitted to merely relaying his…

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