I was looking for a quote to include in my last post, and I stumbled across this quote from Rev. Jesse L. Jackson. It caught my attention, and I decided I would write a blog about it. In some ways, the quote is a bit harsh towards the hearing world. Yet, if you think about it, this quote rings true.
People don’t listen as much as they should.
Sign language proves that you don’t need words to communicate with someone. While you may not use your ears to listen, I would argue that you are still “listening” to a conversation that is done in sign language. If no one is paying attention though, if no one is listening, communication falls apart.
Literally speaking, the deaf cannot hear, but with help and certain accommodations, the deaf can partake in conversations and social events with everyone else. Hearing people have no problem hearing, obviously, but I think sometimes they don’t listen. They ignore requests to speak louder, talk slower, look at who they are talking to, etc. They don’t listen when they assume we are stupid, rude, reclusive, or weird. It’s too much effort to ask questions. It’s too much effort to get to know someone.
It’s too much effort to listen.
I think society as a whole needs to learn to listen better. No, not hear, LISTEN. You can hear something without really listening. Listening requires concentration, attention, respect, and understanding. When you listen, you learn so much more than if you simply hear. So, don’t just hear those around you . . .