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We Need MORE Diversity In Books! (American Sign Language Vlog) | Rikki Poynter


This video is brought to
you by my Patreon pledges. Help create content
by pledging today. RIKKI:
We have no plan
for this video. AMANDA:
That’s why this
video will be fun. Because we have no plan. RIKKI:
Hello there. We’re in Winston-Salem right now. I’m at the bookstore
with my friend, Amanda. Introduce yourself. AMANDA:
What’s up? RIKKI
Who are you? AMANDA:
I’m Amanda,
that’s my sign name. Amanda McDonough. I’m a writer, actor,
and I’m deaf! RIKKI:
We wanted to go to
the bookstore today. Socialize a bit,
buy a lot… We won’t talk about that though! But! What were you thinking about
when you wanted to film this? AMANDA:
So we were walking
into this bookstore, and we were just
looking around. And, you know,
we love to read. It’s something that
connects us. And I see so many books. Beautiful books. And they’re all so diverse. But one thing I noticed
that they didn’t have, and this is at most
bookstores I go to, they don’t have books
on disability. Books written by people
with disabilities. Deaf, blind. RIKKI:
Both. AMANDA:
So it’s interesting
because you see bookstores- They normally lead to new
ideas, books, written words. They can lead the way to
change ways of thinking. So if bookstores aren’t ready
to include disability in their diversity, then we have a lot
more work to do. RIKKI:
Amanda just
released a book. Would’ve been cool to
see if her book was here. It isn’t. We’ve only seen one- We saw one deaf book
written about Helen Keller. We saw another by a
DeafBlind woman named Haben- BOTH:
Girma. AMANDA:
Congratulations, Haben! RIKKI: But only two- AMANDA:
Yeah, only two.
That’s it. And no ASL in the
language section. I noticed that too. I want to feel represented
in bookstores. I want deaf and other
disabled people to start writing their stories. So people understand what
life is like for disabled people. RIKKI:
Right. AMANDA:
We’re in 2019. Like I love Helen Keller- RIKKI:
Wait, I see something. Hold on one second. (BEEP) I don’t know- I just saw
this and was like, “Ahh!!” AMANDA:
That’s awesome. RIKKI:
It’s a novel. It’s called “Roll With It”. AMANDA:
It’s the same author
of “Wonder”. I want to see if
she’s disabled. The author has a son
with cerebral palsy. RIKKI:
Ohhh. That’s cool. Okay, okay, but! At the same time- It’s cool to see a novel. But I also want to see-
ah, how to spell it- Autobiographies. AMANDA:
Disabled people writing
their own stories. From our perspective. RIKKI:
We want people to learn
about disabled people. But nobody has the
books on the shelves. AMANDA:
Yeah. RIKKI:
You were here yesterday. You told them you wanted
to see more disability books. What did they say to you? AMANDA:
“Email us.” They told me I need
to email them. So I gave them my card,
my information. I mean… The only way to make
a change is education. And helping people who
don’t know realize that there’s something missing. RIKKI:
Right. AMANDA:
I’m excited to email them
and see what happens. RIKKI:
Since we’re here, I want them
to know about your own book. I mean, you be the
one to tell them! On my channel. Go, go, go! I’m sorry,
I just had coffee. AMANDA:
So I wrote a book. It was released a year ago. It’s called “Ready To Be Heard”. This is the sign name. It’s about my journey. Growing up as a
hearing child, becoming hard of
hearing, then deaf, and then accepting
my deaf identity. So, really, my whole journey. RIKKI:
And the journey with-
I’m sorry. Your journey with hearing
aids and cochlear implant. There’s a lot to teach about that. AMANDA:
Yes. Learning how to sign. Entering deaf culture
late as an adult. You know, same as you. You know a lot about that! RIKKI:
That’s why we have
such a connection. Because we have similar
stories growing up in life. AMANDA:
Of course, my story
isn’t special. So many deaf people
find the community late. Or they want to join but
they’re scared to. Because it’s new and different. So I hope my book
will encourage them. You know, come on over!
It’s not scary! If you need support,
we’re here for you. RIKKI:
Because of her, I may
want to write something. AMANDA:
I will encourage her. Come on! RIKKI:
I need your help to
set everything up. AMANDA:
I’ll help you. It’s no problem. RIKKI:
So if you have bookstores
that don’t have disability books, tell them, email them,
call them up even. AMANDA:
If you have a book you know of
that we don’t know about, those written by disabled people- RIKKI:
In the comments. AMANDA:
And you write something! I want to see it,
buy it, read it. RIKKI:
Right. Well, thank you
for being here. AMANDA:
Represent! RIKKI:
Right, right. Thank you for filming with me. AMANDA:
Of course. RIKKI:
If you want to
see her channel, I’ll have the link below. Later everyone, bye! (MUSIC)

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