I never thought when I endorsed Chris Wagner in last week’s Deafweekly that I would be congratulating him this week as the new National Association of the Deaf president.
Sheri Ann Farinha had tons of support and led in the polls by a large margin. I thought her victory was a foregone conclusion.
But when the NAD delegates got together last Friday, they elected Wagner president by a 79-49 vote.
How the heck did that happen?
There was no shortage of theories on Sheri’s Facebook page, which quickly blew up like a San Diego fireworks show.
But every comment reaffirmed my decision to endorse Wagner.
Sheri attracts the bloggers and vloggers who complain about everything but do nothing. Chris attracts the grownups who are too busy running our deaf schools and agencies to waste time on Facebook.
You disagree with me that Sheri’s fans are all talk and no do?
Well, after years of talking they were finally given something to do — get Sheri elected NAD president. And they couldn’t do it.
And they couldn’t wait to rush back to the Internet so they could talk and talk and talk about their failure to do it.
When Sheri asked for a potential name for a think tank, more than a thousand comments were posted. Someone made a list and a poll was created (four, actually, because it was too big for one poll) and suddenly we had this “American Idol” thing going on to name Sheri’s Think Tank.
This is what I hate about these people. They have too much goddamned time on their hands.
We deaf people have serious problems but nobody’s doing anything because everyone’s too busy pounding out blogs and vlogs and FB posts and comments. Wouldn’t it be nice if just once they would pound out a grant application?
To get something done would require rising from one’s computer and taking a shower and putting on clean clothes and leaving the house. I mean seriously, can you see someone like Ridor doing that? Come on.
Sheri, unfortunately, is a “consensus leader,” the kind who thinks everybody has to be involved. Winston Churchill wasn’t like that. He’d call it The Think Tank and everyone would like it and no one would waste time on such an unproductive task. (And you just KNOW the final name of Sheri’s Talk Tank will have a committee feel and a politically correct tone.)
I do admire Sheri. We had our moments 10 years ago at GLAD but we got over it. I supported her candidacy, until the loons on her team convinced me otherwise.
But she’s lost points with me since Friday. I find her call for a boycott of ZVRS to be petulant. It’s a good thing her opponent did not work for Gallaudet or she’d be telling everyone not to go to Gallaudet.
A lot of deaf people work for the Z. You mess with the company, you’re messing with people’s livelihoods. Is it worth it? To me, it looks like you’re putting yourself ahead of everyone else.
The way I look at it? If someone’s co-worker is running in an election, it would seem only natural for that person to support and talk up their co-worker, possibly to the detriment of the opponent.
People say ZVRS “fixed the election,” but to me that is crazy talk. The NAD delegates came from all over the country, representing a large variety of people. Why would they feel the need to align themselves with one small company from Florida? How do they benefit? Nobody’s explained that to me or offered any evidence.
Sheri says that ZVRS engaged in a “smear campaign” against her and she is a victim of “oppression.” Oh, grow up! This is all just normal election campaign behavior. Your post-election grousing makes you look thin-skinned. If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.
And all this nonsense about one ZVRS employee who described Sheri’s supporters as “militants” in an internal email? What a bunch of ado about nothing!
Everyone describes Sheri’s people as militants. It’s like saying Mitt Romney attracts rich white guys. If you don’t like being called militants, come up with a better word.
But calling for a boycott of the company where your opponent works is nothing BUT militant behavior! If you don’t like being thought of as militants, don’t act militantly.
I’d have a lot more respect if these people would say, “Damn right we’re militants!” Instead, they whine about some low-level ZVRS worker calling them what they are, in an email they were not supposed to see. This does not make them look good.
And Sheri’s support must have been wafer thin if it could been dislodged to such a great extent by such an inconsequential matter.
I was admonished today on FB by some stranger that “we are finished talking about the election,” but this is one that we’ll be talking about for years to come. It’s such a mystery: how could somebody with such strength and power and support be so badly drubbed in an election?
Most likely, the people who actually decide these things are not on Facebook and never told us what they were thinking. They looked around, considered their choices, asked themselves “Do we want these people in the White House?” and decided to leave the grownups in charge.
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To the dude who said I should apologize for endorsing Chris Wagner: Dude, that’s just how things work. Media outlets endorse candidates. I’m not going to be the first editor in history to endorse a candidate and then apologize about it.
I evaluated the candidates and chose who I thought would be best for the job, putting the NAD and the deaf community first. This kind of choice is the most basic principle of democracy. Anyone who thinks I should apologize for exercising my freedom of speech needs to get on a one-way train to North Korea because they will fit in so much better there.
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