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From:  Valerie Sutton
Date:  Wed Aug 23, 2000  1:33 pm
Subject:  Re: Pledge Alligiance in SW

At 10:38 PM +0100 8/22/00, Stefan Woehrmann wrote:
>please can you do me the favor to explain "various types of pledges"
> the Pledge of Allegiance "die Bürgschaft der Untertanentreue"
>I know it isn´t a matter of SW but because of your discussion on the list I
>would like to understand. The Altavista interpreter-service is really
>funny -kids is translated as "Zicklein" = the baby of a goat ;-) I´m
>afraid they
>are absolutely unable to sign anything. Perhaps they would learn to
>understand some SL and SW as well ???
>Stefan ;-)

SignWriting List
August 23, 2000

I got a big chuckle out of this message, Stefan - You are of course
correct that there are several meanings for the word "kid" can
mean both a "goat child", and a "human child"! ;-)

And translation programs and dictionaries do not teach "culture".

Nancy didn't realize that in other countries they do not have a
"Pledge of Allegiance"...

When I lived in Denmark, although I became fluent in speaking Danish,
I did not know their culture. I had never gone to school in Denmark
as a child. So, when Danish adults got together in Denmark, and I
joined their party, they sang songs from their childhood. I did not
know their songs. And it did confuse some could I know
Danish so well, and not know their traditions?

So it is the same for you, Stefan...Your English is so excellent,
that Nancy just assumed that you knew about the US traditions for
children in school. If your message had been written in German, it
would have been clear that you were not of our culture.

The Pledge of Allegiance is the name of a US tradition for children.
Everyone who goes to school in the US knows the Pledge of Allegiance.

The children stand by their desks, look at the US flag in the corner
of the room, place their right hand over their heart and say:

"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America. And
to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all".

Nancy made an important point - which was that Deaf children do not
understand what the Pledge means....they may learn some form of
signed translation of the Pledge, but they most likely do not
understand it - I think it is exciting that Nancy is trying to write
this in SignWriting ;-)

Perhaps you have something similar in Germany? Or other childhood
traditions we do not know? Perhaps you can write that in German Sign
Language (DGS) and share your traditions with our SW List members...

And if there are members from Brazil, Pakistan, Peru etc who would
like to do the same, we would love to learn about your traditions,
especially if it is written in SignWrting!

When I am finished with the US Pledge of Allegiance, of course I plan
to share it with the SW List.

Plus, I hope Stefan, that you feel free to write in German now -
Perhaps your German Deaf students and friends would like to join the
SW List?...If so, they do not have to write messages in English -
they can write messages to each other in German on the SW List - some
of us will participate in the German messages, and some will not, but
that doesn't matter - we don't have to understand every message! That
will give people perspective on the international nature of
SignWriting, and we will all learn from it ;-)

Liebe Grüsse!


Val ;-)


Valerie Sutton


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