{Melvin Patterson, a Black Deaf male with medium length hair and a short beard, stands with a black screen backdrop. Melvin is wearing a black v-neck shirt with a gray blazer.}

I have to tell you I’m so very excited for SignDebate, an event that CSD is hosting at the Austin Deaf Club next Wednesday, October 5. We’ll have two Deaf people, a Democrat and a Republican, signing in ASL, which means we can sit back, watch, and reflect comfortably, which is so very important.

We have a small problem, related to sign names.

First, you may have noticed Barack Obama has his own sign name. How did he get that sign name? Back in 2008, his campaign team revealed a brand new logo, a beautiful simple logo with a US flag sweeping across inside of an O. Obama’s logo helped me think of a possible name sign, [O+B-sweep], but I decided to hold onto that because I preferred to get the community’s thoughts on that name sign before announcing it.

Turns out, that the University of California, Los Angeles was hosting a rally for Obama, and I was excited to attend. Once there, two interpreters asked what the sign for Obama might be. With some hesitation, I told them what I had been thinking of [O+B-sweep], with the understanding that it was a temporary solution. They took that ball and ran with it. Take a look.

{Clip One: A young Black woman with an afro, holding a phone declares, “I’m here to support Obama! [she repeats the O+B-sweep sign a few times]}
{Clip Two: A white blonde woman with hair down to her shoulders stands in front of a stage interpreting, “…an opportunity that we have in choosing Obama [using the O+B-sweep sign], [applause]}

I pulled those clips and posted on YouTube, and once it went out, that sign was everywhere to be seen. You have to understand, I strongly feel that and want for us to decide together as a community the right name signs for public figures.

Do any of you support Trump? Do you have a sign name for him? Do you have one for Hillary? All of you together should tell CSD! Make sure you type in the hashtag #SignDebate when you share your sign name for them. Please share before next week Monday, October 3, 2016 at 12 noon PST. Let them know so they can have enough time to think and decide on the perfect name sign for both presidential candidates.

And when it’s time to watch SignDebate, together we all can watch and think comfortably. It’s important, right?

Any sign name we give to a US president is truly an honor!

{A graphic appears: #SignDebate, Save the Date, October 5th, 2016. signvote.org}

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