Across LGBTQ centers across North America, American Sign Language (ASL) classes are suddenly appearing out of nowhere. What seems like an unlikely combination is quickly becoming a common trend with classes offered in Vancouver, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and Baltimore to name a few
While it may seem odd at first, ASL classes for LGBTQ folks actually makes quite a bit of sense once you think about. The Establishment puts it perfectly as they write, “Both Deaf and queer communities stand outside able-bodied and straight standards of acceptability, both communities have to fight against politics that push them towards invisibility and conformance as opposed to visible identity.”
A center dedicated to teaching ASL to LGBTQ folks has even been opened in Vancouver called Queer ASL, which aims at creating a positive space for folks to learn the language.
Founder Zoée Montpetit told The Establishment, “Queer people understand how it is to be marginalized. Once they start to learn about ASL and Deaf culture, I think they start to recognize aspects that they relate to.”
We think it’s awesome that that Deaf and LGBTQ communities are coming together and it’s even cooler that more hearing people are learning ASL. Keep it up!