There is absolutely nothing to prevent deaf folks, whether culturally deaf and using ASL or not, from becoming writers. We can write. We can throw down poems from our minds on paper. We can shape the stories in our minds into the written word. We can also do this in ASL, but I ask: why not both?

Why not dismiss the idea of English as being a language that belongs to hearing individuals and reject the idea that to be a skilled writer, you need to hear. Reject it! Why not be bi-lingual, embracing both sign language AND this lovely and sometimes confusing language called English. (Well, truth be told- sometimes even ASL is lovely and confusing)

I like to imagine a day when people automatically think “good writers, most of them,” when they think of our deaf community.

How is this to begin? It begins with the turning of a page in a book. It begins with developing a love for reading, even if it’s difficult. Even if we have been let down by our schools or let down by others. Even if we haven’t been let down.

The only barriers that remain are the ones we allow to remain.