First off: Watch this video. It’s just 4:37 minutes long. I won’t share any thoughts on it till you’ve watched it. So, watch it. Okay?
Tamara_Film from Jason Marino on Vimeo.
What was your reaction? When I first saw this video, it was in a Facebook post, and it had reactions along these lines:
- Hnnng right in the feels hole
- Can you please give me my heart back. I need it.
- OH My this is so heartwarming i actually shed a tear
- Theres the punch in the chest I needed to end a day. Nice to see physical disabilities getting some light on em. A+ animation and life destroyer. Would watch again.
I was surprised, and intrigued when I read these comments… It’s a beautiful video, yes, but… such a punch in the chest? Really…?
So, I conducted an experiment. I posted the video on a Deaf community group. The reactions were very different:
- Love this.
- Love this man!
Yes, I thought so, too. And the Deaf response confirmed my hypothesis. But before I get into that, let me share one final hearing comment:
- Really, the fact that the kid cant hear and pretends she can to dance is adorable in its own right, even snuggling the music box to show how much she loves something she cant have… Probably a gift from her mom or dad…. But when the music stops and she keeps dancing, the tear jerking starts. But then the mom comes in and actually supports it cuz she knows the child loves it… then tells her dont stop dancing til the stars stop shining.. Thats forever love… Deadly feels.
Pretends she can hear…? Hearing is not necessary to dance, believe it or not. Deaf people know this. As one Deaf girl, Kimberly Barns, said through an interpreter, as recorded in a Gleaner article, “We feel the rhythm.” (Let me tell you! Some of the best dancers I know are Deaf!)
Hearing people tend to have an “Oh, poor deaf person…” mentality. And I think that needs to stop.
The most touching thing about the video to me is that this little girl’s mother is hearing, and knows how to sign. (She uses simcom, which is annoying, but it has its place here, because it identifies her as hearing.) Most Deaf are born to hearing parents who refuse to learn to communicate with their children through signing, the way that their children have easiest, natural access to communication. A mother who would sign to her Deaf daughter, is a mother who would support her in her dreams.
My only hope is that such a video would encourage people to stop pitying and start understanding Deaf people. Especially their own family members.