Liberia: 'Deaf Must Be Seen As People With Great Potential'

A prominent Methodist preacher, Reverend Emmanuel F. Bailey, says in Liberia the view of many people toward deaf people are negative, stating that they take them to be useless people who cannot make a difference, except to become a liability on society. However, he has called on the society to recognize them, "because they are not responsible for their own ailment."

Rev. Dr. Bailey made the statement when he served as guest speaker at a program marking the official launch of the WUBU Foundation for Deaf Children Development International. The program was held at the Mildred Page Hall S.T. Nagbe United Methodist Church on Tubman Boulevard, 13th Street Sinkor, in Monrovia, on August 17, 2019.

Bailey, who spoke under the theme, "Deaf, But Not Dumb," said his trip to America enabled him to know that all of the views being expressed by people in Liberia on the deaf people were all wrong.

He said that deaf people are working in some banks, participating in local and national government leaderships, and teaching in schools in some parts of the United States.

Bailey said after seeing all of those things, he wondered where did Liberians get the idea that deaf people are "dumb and useless."

Therefore, he wants Liberians immediately change their mentality towards the deaf people, instead see them as people with "great potential."

"I am using this medium to encourage people that deaf people are not dumb but smart, as they can do almost everything a hearing person can do," Bailey said.

He then called on all Liberians to change their minds and attitudes about the deaf people, and that they should also see deaf people as someone who does not have a physical challenge but with great potential to achieve in society, in spite of their hearing impediment.

He also stressed that one of the languages that deaf people can understand is "kindness and passion," which he wants everyone to render to them should they come across any deaf person in their respective locality.

He also encouraged members of the deaf community that what the mind conceives and the heart believes can be done, such as the example earlier set by WFDCD's chairperson, a deaf herself.

He further encouraged the deaf that they should not allow anyone to tell them that they cannot make it.

Bailey said when men and women join together, they make a big difference; not only can they make the difference, but they can change things in the world and change things in Monrovia for deaf people.

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