"We pass the word around; we ponder how the case is put by different people, we read the poetry; we meditate over the literature; we play the music; we change our minds; we reach an understanding. Society evolves this way, not by shouting each other down, but by the unique capacity of unique, individual human beings to comprehend each other." - Lewis Thomas

Sunday, January 10, 2010

"Language is the back bone of any society. Human civilizations could not strive and thrive as well as they have if it was not for uncanny ability to communicate... love your language, love others." - Authors note 04

Today while at work, I'm a Barista at Starbucks (a large chain owned coffee shop for those that do not know what it is) and this lady came to my till and she as deaf and mute. I unfortunately do not know Sign language for luckily for me a girl in line did and helped me to communicate to the lady for me. This got me to thinking though, why is it that Sign Language is not taught in school? We teach many other languages in school. I did look at the courses offered at my university to find that Sign Language is offered here, however, I would like to understand why it is not taught to students younger than those seeking Post Secondary.

I felt terrible after not being to explain why we did not have this lady's tea. It just sparked a large interest and intrigue in me because of this feeling. I am bilingual speaking both fluent English and French and I love languages, but I was never offered a course in Sign. Are there any of you who have experienced this situation? I do not understand why it is that we push these mild disabilities on the back burner, especially with our modern conception of issues which cause these disabilities.

There was another thing that upset me about this situation. It started me thinking about what if this was me, unable to communicate or figure out what was going on. Perhaps in another country unfamiliar with the language, maybe I was too close to an air horn, music was too loud of an extend period of time, or a billion other possible reasons. It would feel like you were lost, forgotten and a thousand other swirling emotions, anger, sorrow etc. How could you over come it, if not through sign language?

If you wish, please leave me your thoughts int he comment section. I'm curious if others have encountered a similar situation or agree with me. Thank you.

1 comment:

  1. In my high school they used to offer what I believe was called American Sign. Not sure if that is true any longer.

    BTW...gave you an award, cause well I just like your writing bud... So come by and pick it up :)


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