The Daily Moth 2-4-2019

February 5, 2019

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam Pressured to Resign Over Blackface Photo; Top Stories Briefs: More Troops to Southern Border; Trump’s Daily Schedule Leaked; Protests Outside Brooklyn Jail; Aarron Loggins’ ASL Performance During Super Bowl LIII; Toyota Apologizes For Supra Commercial With Lyrics “That Deaf Dumb and Blind Kid”; Missouri Woman Charged With Murdering Deaf Man

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam Pressured to Resign Over Blackface Photo


On Friday, media website Big League Politics published an image of Virginia Governor Ralph Northam (D) apparently posing in either blackface or in a KKK outfit.


It was in his 1984 yearbook at Eastern Virginia Medical School.


Northam apologized on Friday, but then on Saturday at a press conference he said he was not in the image.


He did admit that he dressed in blackface to look like Michael Jackson for a dance contest at about the same time.


A chorus of top Democrats have called on him to resign. The list includes Hillary Clinton, Senators Chuck Schumer, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker, and Bernie Sanders, House Speaker Pelosi, former Vice President Joe Biden, and the Congressional Black Caucus.


Northam has refused to resign so far. If he does resign, the Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax would take over.


Fairfax hasn’t called for Northam’s resignation, but tweeted that he was shocked and saddened by the images and said that he hopes the governor will make a right decision.


Fairfax has his own controversy. Big League Politics reported that a female professor from California claimed that Fairfax sexually assaulted her at the 2004 Democratic National Convention.


Fairfax tweeted a statement this morning saying the accusation was false. He explained that the accuser went to the Washington Post more than a year ago but that the Post, after an investigation, decided not to publish the story. Fairfax said he would take legal action.


The Post said in an article today that they didn’t publish the story because they couldn’t corroborate the woman’s story and saw that there was no other similar complaints against Fairfax.






Top Stories Briefs: More Troops to Southern Border; Trump’s Daily Schedule Leaked; Protests Outside Brooklyn Jail  


Here are three top stories briefs.


The first — the Pentagon announced they would send 3,750 more troops to the southern Border. The Department of Homeland Security said they are tracking three migrant caravans on their way to the U.S., with one group over 12,000 people. AP news said there are 4,350 total U.S. troops at the border.


The second news — a person from the White House leaked the private daily schedule for President Trump for the past three months to Axios, who analyzed it. The schedule shows that 60% of his scheduled time is on “Executive Time,” in the mornings. Axios said this is for phone calls, watching TV, reading newspapers, and tweeting. His first meeting of the day is usually at 11 a.m. or after.


The director of Oval Office operations said this was a disgraceful breach of trust to leak schedules and that the schedules don’t show the hundreds of calls and meetings Trump takes everyday.


The third news — there were protests at the Metropolitan Detention Center, a federal jail in Brooklyn, New York because there was no electricity and heat for over a week.


Inmates banged on windows to send a message and to communicate with protesters. There are 1,600 inmates inside.


The New York Times said there was an electrical fire on January 27 that caused the outage.


Protesters tried to go inside the building, but correction officers physically forced them out.


Electricity was restored last night, but it is not clear if the heat is back on. A federal judge ordered the Federal Bureau of Prisons to appear in a hearing tomorrow to address this.




Aarron Loggins’ ASL Performance During Super Bowl LIII


Deaf ASL performer Aarron Loggins gave a powerful and emotional performance for two songs during last night’s Super Bowl LIII (53) game, but unfortunately, there was only a few seconds of Loggins shown on the CBS broadcast.


The NAD National Association of the Deaf posted two videos of Loggins’ performance last night, one for the national anthem and the other for “America the Beautiful.”


Both videos went viral, with the national anthem video being shared 13,000 times.


“Shazam” and “Thor” actor Zachary Levi, who was at the game, posted on his Instagram stories that Loggins and singer Gladys Knight were the all-stars and that it was “next level.” See his post.


[Image by @zacharylevi: Y’all, however this game goes, the all-stars will have to be Gladys Knight and the ASL Interpreter performing the national anthem tonight. Next level, y’all. Next level.]


Nice recognition. I reached out to Loggins to ask him how he prepared for the song. See this.


Loggins: We arrived for rehearsals on Friday, two days before the Super Bowl. We met those three beautiful ladies, Chloe x Halle and Gladys Knight. They are sweet and charming women. They have unique styles of how they intro and outro and in between, they have high, middle, and low (voices), so I practiced with the interpreter to make sure everything was smooth and not out of sync. From that, on Friday, I asked the two beautiful ladies on how, to make sure it was right, if they repeated the ending or not. They said they would repeat it, but both overlap each other so I had to translate the overlaps to make sure it was in sync. So, that was the easy part.


Gladys Knight, her part was very different than previous performers. She has highs, lows, speeds, and slowness, so I heard every word she said. If it was high, I followed that. From that it was pretty simple. I just practiced from Friday up to Sunday, and it was a part of me.


Alex: I asked him how did he approach the ASL translation of the song.


Loggins: The ASL translation part is when the NAD and I sat down and discussed on what made sense and what would be clear. For example, for “sea to shining sea,” we used this simple concept. Sea to shining sea. This “to” part represents the country’s width, from the Pacific to the Atlantic oceans. The shining sign shows the beautiful country. That’s one example. We discussed it and checked if it made sense. Everything went smoothly. Sweet and simple.  


Alex: I asked him what his thoughts were on the very brief exposure he had on the CBS broadcast.


Loggins: CBS, FOX, NBC — some of the big original names went through the same situation of not getting enough of the deaf news audiences and not enough language included on the screen, live, during the national anthem and we are still fighting for next year and the time ahead. That is our number one goal so we don’t go through the same mistakes.


Alex: Thank you for your time, Loggins. Many people shared in the comments that his performance was beautiful, inspiring, and one of the best translations ever.


People who were in the stadium were lucky to see Aarron’s performance. We can be grateful to NAD for sharing the videos, both are available at the link in the transcript.  


So, the struggle for increased visibility of ASL translations for the Super Bowl continues.


NAD Video Post of National Anthem:


America The Beautiful:




Toyota Apologizes For Supra Commercial With Lyrics “That Deaf Dumb and Blind Kid”


Last night during the Super Bowl, Toyota released a commercial featuring their new Supra vehicle. It showed a man driving through what looked like a pinball machine.


The background music was from The Who’s “Pinball Wizard.” The lyrics’ captions read,“That deaf dumb and blind kid sure plays a mean pin ball!” The song is from 1969 but is still popular.


The Illinois Association of the Deaf President Corey Axelrod tweeted at Toyota asking, “Seriously? Those were the best lyrics you could find for your #SuperBowl2019 commercial?”


Toyota’s @ToyotaRacing account responded saying, “Um, those aren’t our words. Classic rock much? #Supra.”


Later, Toyota deleted the tweet, but Axelrod has a screenshot. See this.




Axelrod tweeted that screenshot and said it was a dismissive and insensitive response.


The Daily Moth reached out to Toyota to ask about the lyrics and the deleted tweet. Here is their response.



“As a company, Toyota believes in respect for and inclusive treatment for all people. “Pinball Wizard” provided a relevant soundtrack for the Supra in its virtual pinball environment. Our intent for the ad was to be a source of entertainment and we apologize to anyone who may have been offended.”


Marissa Borjon, Toyota Corporate Communications



As you see, they apologized to anyone who may have been offended. They did not mention the deleted tweet and did not reply to a follow-up email about this.


Axelrod told The Daily Moth that the choice of lyrics is in bad taste. He said while they (Toyota) did not write the specific lyrics chosen for the video, this does not absolve them of their active role in selecting the lyrics used. He said their dismissive and insensitive response was even worse.


The video ad is available on Twitter and YouTube, but it is not captioned.


The Who gave the halftime show for the Super Bowl XLIV (44) game in 2010. They played “Pinball Wizard” for their first first of five songs.


You can read the full lyrics to the song at the link in the transcript.


Axelrod Tweet:


Video Ad (no CC):








Missouri Woman Charged With Murdering Deaf Man


A deaf man from Missouri, Kevin Ziegler (55), was found dead outside of his home on Friday morning.


The Daily Journal Online did a news report on this. Police said Ziegler was lying on the front porch with a wound in his neck artery and had massive blood loss.


A woman who was there, Kimberly Angstrom (49), admitted she stabbed him several times in the kitchen. She was charged with first-degree murder and is at the St. Francois County Jail on a $500,000 bond.


A probable cause statement explained that authorities saw blood splatter in the kitchen, then a blood trail that went from the kitchen to the back door, then back through the kitchen again, leading to the front door and out of the home.


Authorities said in a search, they found needles, a glass pipe, and a plastic bag with women’s clothing that was stained with blood.


The Daily Journal explained that Angstrom has previous convictions for violence involving a knife.


Ziegler graduated from the Tennessee School for the Deaf in 1984. Several people expressed their shock and grief on the “Friends of TSD” Facebook page.


Ziegler’s nephew, Eric, sent a comment to Ziegler’s friend, Patsy Franks Belle. He said Kevin was a kind, gentle soul who would travel 100 miles to watch him perform. He said it is such a tragedy to take one’s life and that it seems unreal.


Belle told “The Daily Moth” that Ziegler has no children. He leaves behind his sister and his father.


She said Angstrom is hearing and has lived for some time at Kevin’s home.



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