Deaf President Now

Deaf President Now
All throughout history when an issue or problem presented it?s self to a group of individuals. Their voices together would bring about change through toil and determination. However, what if the world couldn?t hear your ?voice? or understand your language? The degree of effort and work for such a group of people would seem futile. For the students of Gallaudet University, the barrier between the hearing world and the Deaf world could not have stopped them.
?On March 6, the decision of the university?s Broad of Trustees to name Elisabeth Ann Ziner, a hearing women with no previous knowledge of the deaf community, the university?s seventh president.? (Van Cleve p.170) Brought about a great disturbance within the deaf community and student of Gallaudet University. This event marked the beginning of the ?Deaf President Now? (dpn) movement. The movement last week and during that time all activities and classes at Gallaudet had come to a complete halt. While drawing national attention to the movement it?s self. However, what would cause such a ripple in the community of the Gallaudet student body, to start ?small revolution??
The more interesting question to be asked isn?t what happened to cause dpn, but rather, what didn?t happen? Of all the candidates who were up for the presidency of the university, only one of them was not deaf. This fact only fueled the fire when candidate was chosen. More or less sending a message into the deaf community that deaf people still seemed to be less capable or qualified as a hearing person. Yet, although dpn was a movement for equality and many other issues, it was a milestone in the Deaf Culture. ?Deaf President Now? showed the world that deaf people and the deaf world could be united around a common issues and ?fight.? Especially one of this importance. ?Gallaudet University represents the pinnacle of education for deaf people, not only in the United States but throughout the world.? (Van Cleve p.172) Would it not be fitting for a university founded within deaf culture, be headed by one who was a part of that culture? Obviously there is no question.
All throughout the entire ?Deaf President Now? movement, the message was clear that deaf people have the self-determination and capability as any other hearing person. To watch hundreds of deaf students and supports protest from Gallaudet University to our nation?s capital, using American Sign Language as their only medium of communication. Only shows the effect of the ?power and intelligence? (Van Cleve p. 173) behind sign language. ?With similar unity in the future, they may move into a position of full equality with their hearing compatriots.? (Van Cleve p. 174)
The importance of this movement isn?t hard to understand or admire. In fact, it is one that has paved the way for many others who are simply over looked, because of difference. The movie was very interesting. It examined the many different aspects of the movement including the drive behind the students. It was also interesting to see the deaf community in action. ?Students and their supporters among the faculty, staff, and wider deaf community demonstrated, raised some $25,000 to support the cost of the strike.? (Van Cleve p.171) This type of response isn?t exactly what one would see everyday. Civil right movements are events that take a level of ambition and initiative that many have sought after. This film exemplified the strength and influence, of a common people to bring about change in their society and community as a whole. The most influential aspect of the film I noticed immediately was the ?idea? of a change on a University campus. Students like myself, saw a chance for transformation and worked toward that change in order to strengthen their university. And in turn, became a part of history.

Deaf President Now 7.5 of 10 on the basis of 1091 Review.