Re: "Sound and Fury" over enhancements

From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Thu Jan 10 2002 - 07:23:35 MST

Spike Jones wrote:
> Mike Lorrey wrote:
> > ...This is where a phenomenon like Stockholm Syndrome is involved: the deaf
> > person is handicapped by deafness to such a degree that they derive
> > their identity from that which imprisons them rather than themselves...
> There was an interesting comment made by one of the hearing
> impaired. She fretted: "...what if we lose deafness?" I find it
> interesting she did not say: what if we *cure* deafness. What
> if we lose it? They do not see deafness as a disease or a handicap,
> but rather as a self-identifier.

This takes on a bit of political militancy in the broadcast, when the
deaf mother (the short haired brunette) was discussing on camera with
her older daughter about the implant. The mother has claimed that the
daughter, who is now 'too old' to receive the implant, freely chose to
not get it, yet in the discussion on camera, the daughter states that
the mother decided for her, which the mother quickly tries to correct
and deny, to which the daughter edits her statement with an "oh, yeah",
seeking like any child to please the parent. This indicates to me that
there is a bit of revisionism going on here (as well as manipulation)
where the mother is lying about the preferences of her daughter for the
sake of political expediency.

> This offers an foresight to when we start to cure aging. There
> will likely be many who will object, "what if we lose aging?"

A very good point, one I've been trying to make here. Extropians and
transhumanists need to acknowledge that because the developments we
advocate will have such an impact upon the daily lives of people that we
CANNOT help but be political, because that which we advocate IS seen
specifically as political by those who oppose such developments.

Because people identify so much of themselves by what we see as
unimportant limitations, they see the threat of losing those limitations
as being inherently a political act/attack of negation of their cultural
identity. We cannot help but become political in this, and we need
Pro-Act to get itself in gear.

Fortunately with the Sound and Fury broadcast, I think it did more to
expose the degree to which the deaf are politically motivated to repress
their own members healing. The sort of militant belligerancy seen on the
program by the parents opposed to implants was all I needed to see. It
was a sort of Carthaginian dedication to a cause, willing to sacrifice
their child for the sake of a political, nearly religiously dogmatic,
position that I found truly offensive.

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