Skip navigation

Tag Archives: Young

The term handicap has become a thorn in the side of the English language.  It is one of the words most associated with the argument of political correctness. So what is a handicap?

I read on CNN’s Young People Who Rock about a young fellow, Sean Forbes, who performs music videos with American Sign Language for the Deaf Community. He is an inspiration to the Deaf Community and he brings to them a piece of the world most people never expected they could have. Below the passage there are a number of comments flaming the mention of deafness as a disability [handicap]. In my mind a handicap is something that significantly alters the way a person experiences society. The Deaf Community is indeed a culture. ASL is the third most used language in the United States. But it is impossible to say that when outside of the Deaf Community communicating can be a struggle. I have taken a course in ASL, but having not actually sought out situations to use it, I have only used it once in the four years since I first started. People who have speaking difficulties are often considered to have disabilities or handicaps, but it merely a communication barrier. Perhaps that is why deafness is not considered a handicap because it is a communication barrier similar to the growing English-Spanish barrier. But then speaking difficulties should not be disabilities.

It is impossible to toss around the word handicap or disability without making someone angry. It is almost as if the terms themselves make people lesser than others. They are social categorizations similar to race. Ultimately, I must agree that deafness is not a handicap, but such a term can only be defined in the eye of the beholder. If I went to Russia could not someone say I am handicapped?

Advertisements

The best quarterbacks always seem to fit a certain mold. They aren’t the most athletic, or the strongest out there, but they know how to play. The quarterback position is dominated by ‘white’ players, while more traditionally athletic positions are dominated by ‘black’ players. These other positions require less know how, and more pure talent. All of the best players at almost every position except QB, OL, K, and P, are down the line ‘black.’ But ‘black’ players often struggle at the quarterback position in the NFL. Most of the ‘black’ quarterbacks try to force athleticism to be more important at this position than know-how. The list is failed, or failing, athletic ‘black’ quarterbacks is mounting. The number one case is Michael Vick, who in my opinion, couldn’t throw a lick compared to the other starting quarterbacks in the league.  Being able to run so well is good, but in the NFL at the QB position the ability to perform in the pocket will always be more important unless there are drastic rule changes. The best ‘black’ quarterback I have seen, by far, is Donovan McNabb.  When he first came into the league he was the stereotypical running ‘black’ quarterback, but he learned and developed into a very good QB. When speaking about the best all-time black QB, Warren Moon, Randall Cunningham, and Doug Williams must be put into the equation. Of these, and of all ‘black’ quarterbacks, only Doug Williams has a Super Bowl ring as a starter. He wasn’t the most talented quarterback, but he played the position well. There are today a number of ‘black’ quarterbacks who have an opportunity to break the mold: JaMarcus Russell, David Garrard, Vince Young and Tavaris Jackson among others. But they have to learn not to rely on athleticism, and to use their skill as a passer, manager of the game, and leader.