Our Thoughts & Prayers Are With Gallaudet

Last Friday, President I. King Jordan ordered arrests of the protesters. It was a sad chapter in Gallaudet’s history — the situation was allowed to escalate to this point, and unfortunately, the responsibility lies with the leadership.

When a Board is not listening to the community, you can always guarantee there will be problems. Education is being disrupted. Lives traumatized on both sides. We do feel for both sides of the protest.

We have experienced this with the Board of Regents who runs South Dakota School for the Deaf. We had to resort to drastic measures in order to be heard, and we were finally heard some months later when they replaced the superintendent.

Protests are NOT fun. Students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members are not doing this for “the heck of it”.

We also recognize the fact that Universities are not a democracy — and the Administration is fearful that if they “cave in”, they would be setting a dangerous precedent for future boards and presidents.

True, but only to a point.

An effective Board of Trustees is the one who listens to the community it serves and governs. True leaders are really servants of the community. Leaders are not bosses. They do not accomplish much pushing people around. They listen, they motivate, they inspire… the bottom line is, they should LEAD. If the Board was really effective in the first place, the community would have simply be satisified with the processes and system in the place for them to be heard. No protest would have taken place.

This is a very divisive protest. We urge the Board of Trustees, University leadership and FSSA leadership to work together and resolve this as soon as humanely possible so the University can begin to recover and once again serve as a beacon of hope and light worldwide for signers.

One Response to “Our Thoughts & Prayers Are With Gallaudet”

  1. raychelle Says:

    i enjoyed your blog. but i have to disagree with one thing. gallaudet has been deeply divided for a long time, and this is the first time i’ve ever seen people come together out of their love for gallaudet. in fact, we are more unified than i’ve ever seen the past 18 years. it’s like after DPN, we went in a coma…. as if we had every ounce of hope sucked out of us…not only that, we became extremely apathetic about the horrors at gallaudet, a lot of “i’m sorry it happened to you, but i doubt it’ll happen to me or that it’ll ever happen again”…
    i’m just thrilled we’re all finally doing something about the oppression and all the isms here at gallaudet, it’s just VERY sad that a few particular people are not listening, which is only making gallaudet’s wound more deeper and severe. only if they listened, then we’d be on our way to a better gallaudet. it’s almost like someone has to be run over and killed first then the city will pay for speed bumps. all this could have been avoided if gallaudet’s leaders had the hindsight to listen to us in the first place.

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