Have you been following the big Gallaudet University brouhaha? (See Searching for answers.)
GU is an internationally recognized liberal arts school for the deaf. Recently, the university’s trustees indicated that they were about to appoint Jane K. Fernandes to GU’s presidency.
But many of Gallaudet’s students reject Fernandes. In a very big way. They’ve protested. At one point, over 130 protestors were arrested. Classes could not be held.
For some, the problem with Fernandes concerns deaf “identity politics.” Fernandes, who is deaf, learned sign language only late in life. To some at GU, she’s not “one of us.”
But other protesters insist that the problem is simply Fernandes’ lack of leadership skill. You know, she’s none too charismatic and such.
Jeez, these Gallaudet people have high standards. In the SOCCCD, we’re thankful when the Chancellor goes through a whole week without being a conniving rat bastard.
But at Gallaudet, they’re all pissed off because Fernandes doesn’t smile when she meets people and she doesn’t look ‘em in the eye.
IVC’s Glenn Roquemore doesn’t have the smile problem. He’s got a frozen smile. In fact, most of us wish he’d just break out and sneer once in a while.
With Fernandes, there are other concerns. Apparently, some people think that she isn’t into “shared governance.” That is a problem. We sympathize.
TODAY, a friend called to say that, just that moment, NPR was doing a story on Gallaudet. Out here in the Canyon, we don’t get NPR, so I went online instead. Sure enough, today’s “All Things Considered” had a story entitled Blogs capture, amplify Gallaudet protest.
In the story, reporter Robert Shapiro explains that Gallaudet officials expected the protests to die down, but, instead, they’ve only grown.
One reason: THE BLOGGER. That’s what they call a guy named Ricky Taylor. Says Shapiro,
…Taylor has become pretty famous among deaf people. They know him as Ridor. The blogger. Who boasts on his popular Web site—RidorLive.com—that he is "arguably the most controversial Deaf blogger in America."That’s cool. Way cool.
… Taylor's blog is certainly lively. ... It's opinionated. And it's full of attitude. Just like the protests….
…Protesters demanding the resignation of the new president at Gallaudet get much of their information from Taylor and dozens of other deaf bloggers. Deaf people rely heavily on e-mail and the Web…
When the protests started, Taylor was a cheerleader and often an agitator. Now, when Gallaudet staff want to leak some piece of information critical of the school's administration, it's likely to end up on RidorLive.
…Those blogs—including one that carried a kind of play-by-play of the arrests—were read by deaf people around the world…People like John Egbert, from Minnesota. He read RidorLive…, then got on a plane and came to Washington to support the protests….
… Egbert joined students, faculty and alumni who rallied over the weekend—a couple thousand of them at this university of only 1,700 students.
UPDATE: in this morning’s Washington Post: Gallaudet Protesters' Camp Demolished, Injuring Some
1. Kleenex dispenser, IVC's Wellness Center
2. Comet the cat
3. I take a snap as I drive toward Cook's Corner, yesterday morning
4. A recent shot of the eastern sky