(a basic braille alphabet)
I fall into the 90 % of blind who do not know braille, something I plan to change in the future. While screenreaders are wonderful, as is zoomtext, I miss the ability to sit down with a large book and read the day away. Listening is far from the same, and with how easy my eyes get tired even if I found a book in the size of print I need it is impossible for me to read like I use to.
So I therefore assumed I would be one of the few adults who has gone blind who would try her hand at learning braille. My first block has been who I am dealing with through voc rehab doesn’t see it as a needed skill, as if it is a unneeded novelty, that doesn’t effect anything.
That the classes would simply be something to take up my time, which could be better served doing other things. If my vision fails me at times I can simply use a screenreader. Anyone who uses a screenreader understands my frustration. While wonderful things, words like then, than and sometimes even them sound alike. Names like Sarah and Sara sound alike.
For someone who is going to go to college, then law school, and later work in the field, little details matter. And worst case it is simply something that will help me along.
Now onto the history of Braille and its creation
https://brailleworks.com/braille-resources/history-of-braille/ I thought I should just share a link because the link will explain more than I can.
Why was it pushed off as not important for someone like myself? Well the answer is rather simple Braille first and foremost is hard to learn, for someone who is not a child. It means taking how someone like myself is use to reading and turning it on its head.
Right now using both a screen reader and zoomtext each word I both hear and see what I type or read. Hearing unlike Braille I hear the whole word, this is like seeing. Braille you feel it letter by letter. Why is this so different? Because it is taking you back to when you use to read words by the letters first word second.
Lets push that part aside why is it regularly not taught to partly sighted children? Or children who have conditions that will cause them to go fully blind? Mainly because of money, lack of Braille books, and the idea seeing and reading is better.
The reason for this mindset is drum roll please? We live in a visual world. That discounts the minority that is people who are blind and visually impaired. Same reason why people discount subtitles as important things because simply they don’t use them and might not know someone who uses them.
Another reason is wanting that child or adult seem not so blind. Why is this a issue? Well this is sort of a rather large issue, at least to me.
Hiding blindness makes people think the blind are weaklings who can’t take care of themselves. It makes people not see ones like myself who do have some vision. Case point this woman https://www.facebook.com/bbcgloucestershire/videos/923469724369309/
A rule says in a open disability class she has to where a blindfold because she has light perception. She isn’t less disabled than anyone else. But they feel disability is a true total. Something that her, I and many other people who are blind aren’t.
This isn’t only about Braille, Braille is just the start of it.