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The Braille Monitor,  July 2001 Edition
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Adrienne Asch in academic regalia receives an honorary degree.
Adrienne Asch in academic regalia receives an honorary degree.

Honored:

††††††††††† We are pleased to report that Federationist and distinguished bioethicist Adrienne Asch was honored by her alma mater, Swarthmore College outside Philadelphia, with an honorary degree. Here is the text of the presentation made by Swarthmore President Alfred H. Bloom:

††††††††††††Adrienne Asch, you are an internationally respected bioethicist who has shaped scholarly and public recognition of the ethical complexities that new technologies introduce in the area of human reproduction and who has inspired a deeper understanding of the humanity and the rights of people with disabilities.

††††††††††† You graduated from Swarthmore in 1969 with a degree in philosophy, worked as staff therapist for the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy from 1981 to 1990, and received your Ph.D. in social psychology from Columbia University in 1992.

††††††††††† Since 1994 you have been the Henry Luce Professor of Biology, Ethics, and the Politics of Human Reproduction at Wellesley College, where you are a beloved and admired teacher and leader in developing interdisciplinary curricula in the area of genetics, reproductive rights, surrogacy, motherhood, and the family.

††††††††††† You have published extensively in professional journals, authored or co‑edited six books, and have two further books in progress, one focused on the ethical, social, and psychological issues arising in assisted reproduction and the other on cloning.

††††††††††† You are also a pioneering activist for the rights of people with disabilities.† In 1993 you were appointed to Hillary Clinton's National Health Care Reform Task Force and in 1995 to the Commission on Childhood Disability.†† In 1999 you participated in the historic debate with Professor Peter Singer at the Princeton University Center for Human Values, where you made the persuasive case that evidence of genetic disability should not in itself justify termination of pregnancy and spoke eloquently to the ability of people who have disabilities to give and receive love, appreciate the world around them, and make contributions to their societies. And your impact on public consciousness has motivated changes in public policy that further enable people with disabilities to make those contributions.

††††††††††† Adrienne Asch, through your research, writing, teaching, and lecturing you have engaged some of the most difficult and critical issues of our time, extended the frontiers of bioethical and social psychological understanding, and demonstrated the power of rigorous thought to shape a more just and humane world. Your alma mater is deeply proud that you give life to its highest ideals.

††††††††††† Upon the recommendation of the faculty and by the power vested in me by the Board of Managers of Swarthmore College and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, I have the honor to bestow upon you the degree of Doctor of Laws.

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Hoping to Find:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† I do not have the funds to purchase a new or used Braillewriter. If anyone has a functioning Perkins Braillewriter that you would be willing to donate, I can promise to give it a good home. Contact May Hardison, 5143 E. Washington Street, #1, Indianapolis, Indiana 46219, or call (317) 356-0965.

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For Sale:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† Have you been looking for a portable laptop computer with a built-in Braille display to use when going to meetings or classes or out traveling on your job?† Here is what you have been looking for.

††††††††††† I have a portable Pentium laptop computer with a built-in forty-character refreshable Braille display and full computer keyboard.† The computer has a hard disk drive; floppy disk drive; CD ROM drive; and PCMCIA card slots, which can be used for the Internet, networks, and scanners. The unit includes serial ports, parallel ports for printers, and keyboard ports.† You can also use this unit as a stand-alone terminal for a desktop computer, reading on the Braille display what is on the desktop monitor. This unit comes with Jaws 3.7, Windows 98, and the 1997 version of Microsoft Word and Excel.

††††††††††† My asking price is $6,000 or best offer.† Call Jim at (650) 756-1333.

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New Free Braille Christian Publication Available:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† We have recently begun publishing our bi‑monthly evangelical Christian magazine, The Higher Way, in Braille. Each issue contains inspirational and spiritually challenging sermon excerpts and feature articles, personal accounts of God's life‑changing power, and other items of interest. Subscribe to this free publication by writing to the Apostolic Faith Church, 6615 SE 52nd Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97206.

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Attention Those Interested in Becoming Vision Specialists in Vocational Rehabilitation:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC) on Blindness and Low Vision at Mississippi State University is pleased to announce that the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) has provided funding for an Academic Certificate Program. The purpose of the program is to provide specialized training in vision disabilities for people employed in rehabilitation agencies serving people who are blind or people who are in graduate training programs leading toward a master's degree in rehabilitation counseling.

††††††††††† The stipend-supported 2002 summer program provides four graduate courses for twelve semester credit hours, including a field experience on specialized issues, techniques, services, and technology that are specific to the rehabilitation of people with visual impairments.

††††††††††† A brochure with more detailed information regarding course work, stipends, admission requirements, program dates, and an application will be mailed in the summer of 2001. For more information contact Stacy Butler, Project Coordinator, RRTC on Blindness and Low Vision, (662) 325-2001 (voice), (662) 325-2694 (TDD), or (662) 325-8989 (FAX).

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Retina Visualization Without Dilation:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† You no longer have to be among the over forty million American patients getting pupils dilated during annual exams for progressive eye diseases and retinal abnormalities such as diabetic retinopathy, macular degeneration, or retinal detachment. The Panoramic200‘ Non-mydriatic Ophthalmoscope, manufactured by Optos North America, uses a patient-friendly, wide-field imaging system to capture a single, high-resolution, full-color digital image of virtually the entire retina without dilation, contact with the cornea, scleral depression, or stressful and potentially harmful levels of illumination.† A picture taken with the P200 Optomap‘ exam allows the doctor to see your retina, the optic nerve, and the many tiny blood vessels. This gives the eye doctor a permanent record of the health of your eye.

††††††††††† At the Annual Association of Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO), two recently completed clinical studies of the P200 were presented during the week of May 3, 2001. The Eye and Ear Institute (University of Pittsburgh) concluded that retinal specialists can evaluate patients for diabetic retinopathy using the P200 Optomap exam without pupil dilation. It also demonstrated that the P200 is the first instrument capable of screening diabetic retinopathy with significant patient acceptance.

††††††††††† The second study, completed by the New England Eye Care Center (Boston), compared the Optomap‘ exam against dilated and undilated clinical examinations. Both the dilated exam and the P200 achieved a sensitivity of 74 percent; the undilated exam achieved only 29 percent sensitivity. This proved that the Optomap is a reliable tool for detecting retinal disease in a primary eyecare setting.

††††††††††† Optos North America is headquartered in Marlborough, Massachusetts. For more information or to inquire about the Optomap exam location nearest you, please visit the company's Web site <www.optos.com> or call (800) 854-3039.

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Volunteer Braille Transcribing Available:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† We pride ourselves on the quality of our Braille, proofread by each other under the direction of a meticulous proofreading chair with very high standards. We can employ a professional certified proofreader if the work requires it. For agencies, schools, etc., we charge only our cost of production. For private individuals we charge less than our cost. Contact Beach Cities Braille Guild, P.O. Box 712 Huntington Beach, California 92648. Contact our assignments chair, Linda McGovern, phone (714) 969-7992; or e-mail <lmcgbrl@earthlink.net>.

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Audio Dramas Available on Tape:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† The National Audio Theatre/Blue Ridge Radio Players, which provides recorded audio dramas for the visually impaired without charge, has a new Website: <www.main.nc.us/nataudio>.

††††††††††† Users may learn there about the fifty audio cassettes of classic and original dramatic productions available to order as well as the history and mission of the Theatre. Four new shows are being readied for mailing: Study in Scarlet, Shooting of Dan McGrew, Tycoon, and The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky. Audio Theatre shows are available in libraries throughout the U.S. and at V.A. centers for the blind. The Theatre may be reached at P.O. Box 933, Hendersonville, North Carolina 28793, or at (828) 693-5143.

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International Conference:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† The Second International Conference on Parents with Disabilities and their Families will be hosted by Through the Looking Glass (TLG), the U.S. National Resource Center for Parents with Disabilities. Conference content will draw from international experts on the cutting edge of advocacy, research, training, and services to parents with disabilities. Conference information including registration, accommodation, and stipends is posted on the TLG Web site. Contact Through the Looking Glass, National Resource Center for Parents with Disabilities, 2198 Sixth Street, Suite 100, Berkeley, California 94710; (510) 848-1112 (local and international); (800) 644-2666 (voice); (800) 804-1616 (TTY), national; (800) 848-1005 (TTY), local and international; (510) 848-4445 (FAX); e-mail: <conference@lookingglass.org>; or Web site: <www.lookingglass.org/conference>.

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Piano Teaching Materials Available:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† I no longer teach piano and wish to sell a whole wall of shelved music materials: many sets of Braille piano-teaching materials, each of which is in about six Braille volumes. Print copies of the books will be sold with the Braille copies. Authors include Schaum, Thompson, Clark, Bastine, Smisor, and Mehegan. All of the series of books will sell for about $400 per set. The piano series, published by John Mehegan, however, is a jazz piano course and has four print books with it. Each print book is in about five Braille volumes. I will sell this large set for $1,000. One print book in that set has not been Brailled yet, and it will be included so that you can have it Brailled. Most of the music books were purchased from the American Printing House for the Blind, which Brailled them. However, others have been Brailled by various organizations.

††††††††††† Also for sale: one Optacon II with both battery packs. It cost $5,000 new, but I will sell for not less than $1,000. This machine has rarely been used and is in perfect working order.

††††††††††† If interested in any of the above items, contact Janet Cross, 1236 CR 405, Houston, Mississippi 38851, or call (662) 456-3102 or (662) 456-4557.

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Seeking Medicare Information:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† Seeking vital Medicare battle data, Gregg Welch of Portland, Oregon, plans to battle Medicare for coverage of purchase of closed circuit TV (CCTV). I am seeking any data about billing and appeals with Medicare that successfully resulted in payment by Medicare for electronic visual aids of any type. Phone (503) 408-1419 or write me at 144 S.E. 133rd Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97233.

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For Sale:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† I have for sale an almost new fast computer with speech. It includes OpenBook, a new top-of-the-line HP scanner, new printer, IBM Home Page reader, and IBM Talk and Type program. Asking $1,500, shipping not included. Call Stan at (925) 778-7446.

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New Book for Sale:

††††††††††† Lauren Merryfield has asked us to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† Lauren Eckery Merryfield, author of the title article of our first Kernel Book, What Color Is the Sun, has been published. Heartwarmers of Love, being sold at <www.amazon.com>, contains her story "Love Far beyond the Physical." This is an account of the harrowing yet triumphant qualities of her wedding with Jim Merryfield. You are invited to purchase as many as you'd like, for yourself and to present as gifts. The book includes poignant portrayal of issues related to blindness, life and death, and love--lots of other great stories too.

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Survey Participants Needed:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† Anyone out there interested in being a part of history? Research team seeks 100 blind respondents for the first ever statistical analysis of the sexualities of blind Americans. There are no significant data on the sexualities or the sexual needs and issues of blind Americans. Using a control group of 100 sighted Americans, this study will compare rates of many different aspects of human sexuality. This is a legitimate academic project, over two years in construction. Recently we were awarded a grant from the Foundation for the Scientific Study of Sex (www.fsssonline.org).

††††††††††† Confidentiality is honored in all respects, supported by the use of anonymous Braille, large-print, and e‑mail questionnaires. All respondents must be American citizens over the age of eighteen. Respondents must be of sound mind and able to consent for themselves. All respondents must be blind and have experienced visual impairment prior to puberty‑‑before first ejaculation or first menstruation.

††††††††††† The purpose of this project is to collect quantitative and qualitative data which make a significant contribution to the science of sexology and which dispel myths about blind Americans' sexualities. We hope to locate clues so that clinical sexologists may more effectively assist blind people who have sexual issues and concerns; and, if we're lucky, we hope to find stories which may be of benefit to the blind, the sighted, and the in-between.

††††††††††† For further information contact Dr. Winston Wilde, P.O. Box 1192, Santa Monica, California 90406, Telephone: (323) 692-9120, e‑mail: <docwilde@pacbell.net>.† If you leave your name and a postal address, we will mail you an Informed Consent. Please advise us whether you prefer Braille or large print. This will arrive with a self‑addressed, stamped envelope for you to return the signed Informed Consent. Then we will send you the questionnaire in either Braille or large print. You may request an e‑mail answer sheet. Other questions may be answered in the Informed-Consent section of this research project. But feel free to call, write, or e‑mail us with any questions or concerns.

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Angela and Jay Wolf
Angela and Jay Wolf

Wedding Bells:

††††††††††† On June 2, 2001, Federationists Angela Sasser and Jay Wolf were married at Mayfield Park in Austin, Texas. Pam Dubel and Adam Linn were members of the wedding party, and a number of other members of the Federation family attended the festivities. Congratulations to the newlyweds.

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Elected:

††††††††††† At its April convention the NFB of Utah elected officers for the coming year. They are Ron Gardner, President; Cheralyn Braithwaite, First Vice President; Ray Martin, Second Vice President; Kara Campbell, Secretary; Norm Gardner, Treasurer; and Dean Anderson, Karl Smith, Mary Hale, David Poteet, and Richard Condie, Board Members.

In Memoriam:

††††††††††† With deep personal sadness we report the death on June 5, 2001, of Helen Johnson after a long battle against cancer. Helen served as President of the NFB of Ohio in 1971, and until her health made travel too difficult, she continued to serve on the state Board of Directors. Until a few weeks before her death she continued as President of the Toledo Federation of the Blind.

††††††††††† "Salty" and "indomitable" are the words that come to mind when one remembers Helen. She would drop everything and head for the state capital when testimony was needed in the legislature. And once she got there, she didn't leave till the legislators knew exactly what she thought and why she expected them to agree with her. She never thought that blindness should be used as an excuse for not doing what needed to be done, whether it was preparing a meal on short notice for a crowd, closing her cottage for the summer, or making a speech in a good cause. Helen mothered and worried over everyone she loved, and she worked to love everyone she met. She could be a practitioner of tough love, however; and, if she concluded that one was acting in a way that was not best for the NFB, she was the first to let one know that fact and the best way of setting things right.

††††††††††† We have lost a loyal Federationist and one of those from the early days who understood completely what a difference the NFB has made for all blind people.

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Poetry Books in Braille:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† The Louis Braille Center has Brailled a collection of classical poetry by British and American poets. The collection includes A Shropshire Lad ($10) by A.E. Housman; Selected Poems by Emily Dickinson ($12); Renaissance and Other Poems ($10) and Second April ($10) by Edna St. Vincent Millay; Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience by William Blake ($10); Sonnets from the Portuguese and Other Poems by Elizabeth Barrett Browning ($12); Lyric Poems by Keats ($12); You Come Too by Robert Frost ($12); Best Poems of the Bronte Sisters by Emily, Anne, and Charlotte Bronte ($12); †and Complete Sonnets by William Shakespeare ($15). Anthologies include One Hundred and One Famous Poems compiled by R. Cook ($35); Great Short Poems edited by Paul Negri ($12); Thirty-five Favorite Poems edited by Louis Braille Center ($8); and Love, a Book of Quotations edited by Herb Galewitz ($10). We welcome your suggestions of other poetry you would like to have us Braille.

††††††††††† To order, contact the Louis Braille Center, 320 Dayton Street, Suite 125, Edmonds, Washington 98020-3590. Phone (425) 776-4042, e-mail <lbc@louisbraillecenter.org>. Our catalog of books is available in large print and Braille and on our Web site at <www.louisbraillecenter.org>.

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Wireless Web Access by Voice:

††††††††††† We have been asked to carry the following announcement:

††††††††††† Now you can surf the Web by voice. AirTrac Everywhere Office Version 1 was released in February, 2001.† With this wireless system you can surf the Web and send and receive e-mail easily--all through Voice Recognition.

††††††††††† No more pushing numbers on your phone. No more keying commands on your computer. No more looking for a place to hookup your modem. Dial the AirTrac Everywhere Office, enter your user ID and password, then tell AirTrac where you wish to go.† It is all by voice; you talk to AirTrac; AirTrac talks to you.† By September, 2001, access additional Web sites for work, pleasure, academic research, or homework.† Built-in voice prompts guide you to your destinations.†

††††††††††† You can get real-time quotes from Wall Street and the weather site as well as restaurant and hotel† listings and traffic updates for any city. News, Sports, and Shopping Guides are also available. By fourth quarter, 2001, you can call the AirTrac Everywhere Office and make your e-commerce purchases.

††††††††††† All you need for access anywhere is your phone or cell phone.† The Everywhere Office will store valuable data and phone numbers and provide your calendar schedule, including appointment reminders. Access AirTrac's Web By Voice through your existing wireless or wire-line service. For more information contact Jim Smith, Consultant to AirTrac, 1356 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60605, Voice: (312) 341-0800, Fax: (312) 341-0801, E-mail: <jimsmith@airtrac.net>, <www.airtrac.com>, Customer Service: (877) 874-9656.

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††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† NFB PLEDGE

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††††††††††† I pledge to participate actively in the effort of the National Federation of the Blind to achieve equality, opportunity, and security for the blind; to support the policies and programs of the Federation; and to abide by its constitution.

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