Sarah Churman, if you’re reading this, let me start out with a disclaimer. What I’m about to write isn’t about you. If your implanted hearing aid works for you, that’s great. For the moment I say this with all sincerity.
Some of you, including Sarah Churman, might be wondering what I mean by that remark: “…for the moment.” By way of an explanation, let me tell you a story.The one thing that many, many people continue to forget about the viral YouTube video of Sarah Churman was that the Churmans never expected it to go viral in the first place. In the first 8 days since YouTube aired, she has been on the Today Show with Matt Lauer and the Ellen DeGeneres show, and was featured on CNN with Anderson Cooper. Webwise, she was all over the place as well. Pretty good in just a few days time. Technically it'd been about 5 or 6 days time rather than 8 days because it took a few days before the video went viral and that's when the media caught wind of it, both the web and on TV. It went viral with no fault of Sarah's own. She didn't put the video up, her husband did with the encouragement of his mother so that their families and friends would be able to witness Sarah's reaction to her implant being turned on. The video captured accurately that Sarah was hearing herself for the first time. And now some people are heaping scorn at her for a variety of reasons.
Strange world indeed.
Why is it so hard to congratulate a grown deaf adult seeing the immediate (and emotional) success from her implantable hearing aid in a video? A result that took Sarah by surprise at the clarity of sound that was coming in. Why reserve such congratulations to her and instead lament about one's own history struggling with his hearing aid wishing his story was video-taped and had gone viral, too? Had Sarah Churman's video received only 2000 views, all of this would've been essentially a "non-story." But instead it churned out some 7.2 million views/hits so far in less than two weeks.
Of course, I don't expect that everybody will share the same sentiments echoing mine when it comes to congratulating Sarah on her successful use of her implantable hearing aid. My approach is to separate myself from Sarah's and leave it at that because I recognize that each of us is different when it comes to our hearing loss, our experience, our upbringing, our preferences to communicate, and whether we successfully used our hearing aids, cochlear implants, other implantable hearing devices (e.g. Baha, Envoy, etc) or none at all (e.g. signing) to our benefits.
I'm disappointed and sad to report this but I am left with no recourse but to report this behavior and continued misunderstanding.
I left a comment at Deaf Echo on a blog piece about Sarah Churman just a few minutes ago. I went back to see if any responses came up (Patti's came up) only to see that my comment was once again removed. I am guessing this has to do with a disagreement and misunderstanding over what I wrote, my opinion several months back (and here) in Febuary 2011. But I wasn't sure if I was still on the banned list (seven months later) and made a screen copy of my comment submission just in case. Sure enough, I'm persona non grata (the new commenting rules can be seen here while the old seen on Feb 2, 2011 can be seen here) for petty reasons, I suppose.
Before at 9:50 AM PCT (Oct 9, 2011):
Removed at approximately 10:10 AM PCT (Oct 9, 2011):
As you can see my comment was deleted. Nothing demeaning, hateful, derogatory, or abusive about it as you can clearly see from what I wrote seen in the screen capture. No ad-hominem attacks. No foul language. And certainly not a spam. I think whoever removed my comment needs to have the cojones to look past his/her own petty feelings when it comes to a difference of opinions instead of hiding behind claims of "abusive comments" as reason for the continued blocking. Incredibly, the moderator(s) still refuse to point out exactly which or what comment of mine back in February 2011 was considered as an "abusive comment" which can, frankly, be anything they would want it to be and call it justified. All of my comments have not been abusive nor disrespectful as Candy pointed out before as a witness to this whole charade. Clearly my recent comment seen in the screen capture above is not abusive nor disrespectful at all. Folks, let's learn to let go such pettiness since after all Bobby (one of the moderator of Deaf Echo) said:
We love a good discussion that drives things forward, and we act aggressively to maintain a good environment for our readers and writers.I've always loved having a good discussion that drives things forward in my blog and in other discussion forums, too. Nothing in my responses were shown to breach that "good environment for our readers and writers" as you can see in my latest comment that was conveniently deleted. But then again, it's their blog and they have every right to do what they feel is right even if it means letting misunderstanding getting the better of them. Yet, I find all this incredulously humorous. And I certainly have a right to blog my opinions on people who simply cannot accept alternative viewpoints and opinions who are unable to simply agree to disagree. Agreeing to disagree is a show of professionalism. Pettiness is not.