Deaf singer Mandy Harvey, who rose to worldwide fame after a triumphant debut on 'America's Got Talent,' has received death threats, BBC News reports.
"I used to get some pretty strongly worded letters and death threats," she told the BBC. "I got a lot of backlash from certain people in that community because I was promoting oralism."
Oralism is the practice of educating deaf people to use speech and lip-reading rather than sign language.
"When you're doing something that is living inside the hearing world, such as music and singing, it can be frowned upon because we're supposed to be encouraging ASL (American Sign Language) only," Harvey said.
Charlie Swinbourne, editor of deaf blog The Limping Chicken, says Harvey's experience is an example of the "ugly side of our community."
The term "oral" can also be used as an insult within the deaf community.
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