SUFFERING IN SILENCE

DEAF SLAVES ARE SET FREE, BUT ARE THERE MORE?

They seem to be part of the subways of New York City, walking meekly up and down the cars, handing out pens and key chains, along with frayed business-size cards that read I AM DEAF. Then they scurry back, ricocheting from post to post as they silently gather up their cards and wares, their cocked heads appealing for riders to buy the pitiful $1 trinkets. Most people ignore them.

However, four of these vendors ventured nervously into a police precinct at 4 a.m. on July 19 with a three-page letter that hinted at the silent netherworld they inhabited. Following them to...

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