Sign language is now one of the most popular languages to learn, it can help us communicate to any person with limited language skills. Language and culture go hand-in-hand and without language, it’s impossible to learn the culture. Just like any culture Deaf people has their own culture too and to get into their culture we should learn their language.
Imagine how it is incredibly rude when a hearing friend of a Deaf person turns and continues a conversation as usual with another hearing friend, the Deaf person is left out. Exaggerated mouth movements can be seen as rude. In a society where the Deaf are commonly misunderstood, the support of others is more than necessary. Socializing is a very important value to us hearing people just like it is to deaf people.
In our “hearing” culture, the terms used to describe deaf people have to do with their hearing loss. The term “hard of hearing” is better than “deaf.” Hard of Hearing people are generally regarded as being easier to communicate with and fit in better with hearing people. Deaf people, on the other hand, are seen as being difficult to communicate with and that they may not even speak. The term “hearing-impaired” is also used to identify them both. Moreover, the term “hearing-impaired” is seen more negatively because that says there is something wrong with being Deaf (which is the complete opposite of what Deaf people believe!)
Unfortunately we the “hearing” people believe that deafness is a handicap. But, it’s not. Deaf people can do Everything except hear. The only real handicap of deafness is when deaf children are deprived of true communication!
Saying that, what do you say we learn sign language, to fit into their culture and help them fit in ours. We can choose to learn sign language as one of our skills. Learning a new skill enhances our outlook and bring doze of enthusiasm to us. Let’s enhance our skills and advance our thinking.