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Submitted: May 18, 2017

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Submitted: May 18, 2017




For my project topic I chose to write about Americans with disabilities. I chose this topic because I used to live with my deaf uncle. I also chose this topic because it was the only topic that seemed to interest me. Living with a deaf uncle I have had many experiences with other deaf people. Once I went to Las Vegas for a Deaf Convention and I communicated  with a lot of deaf people. When I was a baby I learned sign language as my first language. I also chose this topic because I have many experiences of people with disabilities being discriminated upon. Sometimes if a person is deaf they will talk bad about that person behind there back and they will have no idea because they cannot hear that person. Some people with disabilities cannot do things better than others,is often the view people have about disabled people.  This is not always true, and they are often discriminated upon. Some people who are born with down syndrome are made fun of because of the way they look.

My uncle has been discriminated upon too and even sometimes when I’m with him.  It is hard for me too see and the way he doesn’t know. When people apply for a job it normally only takes one time to apply and either the person gets hired or not.  It took my uncle about 6 years  to get hired with Jim Click as an automotive mechanic. They didn’t want to hire him because he was deaf and that he was a liability. To get him hired he wrote Jim Click a personal letter and contacted him. It was Jim Click himself who hired my uncle. Jim Click paid for the man who trained my uncle to take American Sign Language (ASL) classes at Pima.  The man was willing to take the classes and to work with my uncle.  They are now very close friends.  Before my uncle applied to Jim Click, he had applied for a job with Watson.  He did get an interview with Watson, but after the interview they never communicated with him after they found out he was deaf.  

As a child, my uncle used to play football.  When he was a little boy my grandparents packed up and moved to South Carolina.  In South Carolina, my uncle wanted to play football.  When my grandma went to sign him up, they were told that he would not be able to play with their league because he was deaf. Later she received a call from the league and asked my grandma what was wrong with my uncle, she told them that he was deaf.  The league told my grandma that he should play with the Challenger League because none of the coaches were comfortable with his disability.  The lady told my grandma, “remember that this is South Carolina and we are 10 years behind in time.”  My grandma did not accept this and told them that the American with Disabilities Act gave them plenty of time to meet the standards.  My uncle did not play with the Challenger League, but he did play football in South Carolina.  

Our church has blood drives about every 3 months or so.  My uncle would come in to donate blood.  One day he came into donate blood, and he was turned away.  They had told him that a family member could not interpret for him during the questionnaire process.  My uncle told them that was fine, but he wanted an interpreter.  They denied him the right to have an interpreter, and told him that he could read the questionnaire.  They also told my uncle that if he couldn’t read the questions or the pamphlet then he would not be allowed to donate blood at all.  My uncle did not donate blood that day, and ever since then he has not donated blood with American Red Cross again.  I have also heard similar stories from other deaf people who wanted to donate blood with American Red Cross and they too had the same experience.

We should not be quick to judge or assume that just because someone as a disability they cannot do certain things. We should get to know the person for who they are.  We can all learn from each other and help each other out. I may not live with my uncle, but I live with this everyday.  I am very close to him, and to see what he goes through everyday, he inspires me to be better.  This project means a lot to me because of my uncle and that is why I chose to do Americans with Disabilities.

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