Description about the painting:
I am working on a series 'Right to Be Deaf', Painting No. 4 'Deaf Identity Robbed.'
A baby cries as ‘professionals’ who surround it make the sign for “ROB” in ASL. The letters AGBAD are scratched on the wall in the background like graffiti with an X in blue tape—a clear implication of those who follow the teachings of A.G. Bell. These professional audists have worked to take the Deaf identity away from this Deaf baby by encouraging his family to not use ASL with him. Professional audists include everyone from early hearing detection staff who don’t offer information about ASL and Deaf culture for the family, to cochlear implant surgeons who lead families to believe the child will hear and speak like hearing babies, to audiologists and speech language pathologists who know little about Deaf culture or ASL who tell families they will ruin their child if they let them learn ASL. They all make up the group that wears the mask of benevolence—a group that believes they know best for people how to live a life they themselves will never live, with no representation from adults who are Deaf. The Deaf community weeps with the culturally Deaf toddler as his identity is robbed.