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Woke Up to Audism Wilkinson a thriving socio-cultural community (e.g. ASL community). The role of linguistic accessibility for deaf people is reinforced by Blankmeyer Burke, proposing that “a critical component of the ability to flourish is access to language, and for members of the Deaf community this means access through a fully accessible signed language” (2015). Blankmeyer Burke also proposes how the loss of having the opportunity of deaf flourishing would lead to serious consequences for deaf people as discussed: “discarding the option of flourishing in a world where one is guaranteed full, not partial, access to language, is an incalculable loss” (Blankmeyer Burke, 2015). The powerful themes of linguistic accessibility and linguistics rights for deaf children are expressed in the Snowflake poem. Valli closes the poem with a falling snowflake falling into the snow on the ground, Valli leaves us with an open question at the end of the poem. What are our perceptions on a deaf child as a snowflake becoming a part of the snow on the ground? First, we need to examine the symbolism of the snow on the ground, and there appears to be three possible interpretations. First, is the snow on the ground a metaphor for the deaf world where deaf children will eventually be a part of later in their lives, or is it a representation of deaf children being assimilated into the dominant language and culture of hearing people? Or does the snow on the ground allude to the linguistic and cultural diversity of all people, including deaf people? Valli ingeniously concludes his poem with the snow on the ground in order for us to muse on the symbolism of the snow. If we were to embrace and promote linguistic inclusion in our society, then we need to revisit our perspectives about the status of ASL and ASL users. If we view hearing people as full-fledged signers in addition to being speakers, then deaf people’s social network will extend further and be strengthened, and this would result into a robust social capital for deaf people (Wilkens & Hehir, 2008). The conclusion of the Snowflake poem prompts us to examine and reflect on our beliefs and expectations for and from deaf people. The open-ended question about deaf people’s place in the society with respect to linguistic rights is also explored in Bahan’s 1992 classic ASL literature work entitled Bird of a Different Feather. This story is an example of symbolic allegory of the deaf child being born into a hearing non-signing family and the struggle they face together obtaining advice how to raise an atypical child from medical, religious, and educational experts. Similar to Valli’s Snowflake poem, Bahan concludes his narrative by showing the surgically beaked bird (aka. cochlear implanted deaf child) flying into a sunset. Bahan leaves us with the question about the “cochlear implanted” bird’s choice whether he will be more drawn to the hearing world or the deaf world or maybe neither. This literary work again reflects the internal strife in deaf children who must face possible marginalization from hearing and deaf communities over their implant surgery that they had no control over. Both communities rejected the cochlear implanted bird for different reasons. The bird was not deaf enough or too hearing, which resonates with many deaf people who seek for a sense of belonging. If deaf people reject someone with a cochlear implant, is this audism? According to Cripps and Supalla (2012), this is a form of audism, called reverse audism. They center their argument for reverse audism on the basis of a variety of practices among both deaf and hearing signers who discriminate against hearing people who either use or want to learn a signed language (p. 97). In other words, those signers are applying reversal audist behaviors toward hearing people, and maintaining this practice can result into potential obstacles for signers who would significantly contribute to social change (Cripps & Supalla, 2012). Audism has subjected deaf people to both overt and covert biases regarding their deafness and their language use in most aspects, if not all, of their lives. Audist biases are not easily SASLJ, Vol. 2, No. 2 – Fall/Winter 2018 61