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A Serious Discussion about Autism Part 2: Autism and Society


Duskull

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Well, I feel  like I could have made this one long post in hindsight. But, I'm past that point now, so here's the second part of a three part series of blog posts. Autism as a diagnosis has only been around for 70 years, and Asperger's has only been around for 20, so it is kind of expected for society to not really understand what the autistic population as a whole are going through. Not to mention, that in part 1 I mentioned the characteristics of autism. Those characteristics are very abnormal and quite noticeable. Though most people would discount them for awkwardness and obsessiveness, the trained eye is able to see through that. But the thing here is that this part is much more concerned with most people than it is with autists. As a whole, however,  I think society is quite unaware, even in comparison to how unaware that I'd think they should be. Why do I think this is the case? Well, here's two reasons (even though there are probably more).

 

Autism is Depicted Inaccurately in Media

As I stated in part 1, I would define autism as an umbrella term for a developmental disorder that affects a variety of functions of the brain including the processing of sensory information, communication, motor skills, and also may effect the emotional stability of the affected. Most also affect cognitive skills. The disorder normally shows signs in the first three years, but some milder forms may not be diagnosed until adulthood, due to the fact that it's generally associated with cognitive deficiency, but they will nonetheless show difficulties in specific areas that may become concerning later in life. Going through that piece by piece, I can come to the conclusion that some TV shows, games, and movies try so hard to include autistic characters that they hardly ever get them right. Here's a few examples of them off-hand, and how they're inaccurate.

  • Sheldon Cooper from "The Big Bang Theory"- He is actually LITTLE like an actual autist and more like extremely OCD person that literally feels for nobody. Which is so far off it's not even funny, just like the actual show he's in.
  • Spencer Reid from "Criminal Minds"- His social skills are way too good, and his interests are far too diverse. That makes for the assumption that people that are a little bit awkward, are savant-like and nothing else have autism. Which is far from correct, honestly.
  • Raymond Babbitt from "Rain Man" - A lot of the traits are overdone to the point where it makes it seem like you have to be seriously impaired to have any form of autism (which is WRONG). Sadly, THIS is the main influence for how society sees autistic people, so people like (potentially) me would be immediately shrugged off.

Yes, there have been quite occasional accurate depictions, but for the most part most inclusions just seem like an attempt to say "oh we have an aspie for a character that's really smart! We're diverse!" When the way they portray them actually puts it into question. They usually must be savants and a little awkward and that's really it. No mention of things like struggling with motor skills, abnormal movement, and nothing involving cognitive delay (which happens even with autists with an above average IQ). That's not right, not right at all. Autism is much bigger than a little awkwardness! Also, there are only a SMALL percentage of autists are savants. I do mean a VERY small percentage.

 

 

Autism Speaks is a BAD Organization to Represent the Autistic

Autism Speaks always advertises itself as a group who is legitimately concerned about the autistic... While making it BLATANTLY OBVIOUS that they have ZERO concern for the well being of the autistic whatsoever. Autism Speaks is a hate group that oddly enough doesn't speak for the autistic as a whole. There's plenty of reasons why this is, and I've kept it short enough.

  • NONE OF THE BOARD MEMBERS ARE AUTISTIC!!! How could they know what it's like WHEN QUITE LITERALLY NOBODY THERE IS ON THE SPECTRUM?!?!?! 
  • They demonize autism. This is what I meant in my political views blog when I was talking about autistic rights. It's OUR right to be autistic. They don't believe that, and instead it's a disease and a plague. This rhetoric is a big part of what makes them a hate group, as it makes the autistic out to be sub-human. Which is f***ing sick. This is actually ESPECIALLY bad for the autistic because as a group, we are far more prone to depression and anxiety issues, and this is BOUND to cause them!
  • They use Autism Awareness Month and their ads to make the public LESS aware of how it REALLY is to be autistic! Is that intentional? I think the jury's out on that at the moment. But, I must say it's looking like they're going to come back with a guilty verdict. But nonetheless, what does that do for US?
  • They literally partnered with a group that commits VIOLENT ACTS against the autistic! Who am I talking about? The Judge Rotenburg Center. You know what they do to the autistic? They TORTURE THEM AS AN "ATTTEMPT TO TREAT" THEM! They use techniques such as social isolation, physical violence, forced ammonia inhalation, food deprivation, sleep deprivation,  and prolonged restraint in this pursuit, and as of the writing of the Autism Wiki article I'm using as a source, they've killed SIX people like this! And it wasn't that recent I don't think!
  • They were going to change their direction, but no they have NOT. I have seen their ads on TV a few times since one of the chair people died in 2016, and they were replaced by somebody who wanted to change the message as stated by my source, but nothing happened. They still air ads demonizing autism and treating it like t may as well be f***ing AIDS, when IT'S NOT THE SAME! Autism is NOT a disease! It's not something you CURE! Autism is a lot more similar to something like Bipolar disorder (which I think I have a minor form of), where it's something that can be treated, but it's a part of the actual PERSON affected by it. Advocating to change a person's identity over not conforming is f***ing ORWELLIAN!  

I really hope that someday that THIS won't be the largest "advocacy group" (my a**) for autism in the future, and I have to say that I actually have hope for this. If we speak up and tell the public how evil they are and give them an alternative, we just might be able to take them down. But the only thing is that they have so much funding that it may be a little difficult to take them on. But you know, the bigger they are, the harder they FALL. Though the first step is to STOP supporting Autism Unawareness Month (That is what it really is)! Stop buying their agenda! This is SO important because this is how they raise money to research into forcibly making the autistic normal, and we CAN'T have that!

 

There will be a part 3 on this about how autism as an issue should really be addressed, in more detail than I posted in my political views blog post. To sum it up for anybody who didn't read that post or those who didn't get it from here, I believe the autistic have the right to be who they are.

Another note on some of the semantics in my post, switching between calling the autistic community they and us, you know I think I strongly suspect I'm on the autism spectrum myself and that's a show of it. I say "strongly suspect" because I can't be entirely sure, but in my mind I'm as close as could possibly be to 100% positive that I have undiagnosed Asperger's. Just some clarification there.

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You call this short? it was a little too long for me to read and I have Autism myself. Asperger's even.

I will agree with you that Autism Speaks is indeed a big fat liar.

I just saw one of their ads on YouTube and their likes are less than 240 while their dislikes are 3.2K. 

Edited by Will Guide
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30 minutes ago, Will Guide said:

You call this short? it was a little too long for me to read. 

I will agree with you that Autism Speaks is indeed a big fat liar.

I just saw one of their ads on YouTube and their likes are less than 240 while their dislikes are 3.2K. 

The first part of this series of blogs was longer and I felt like there could have been more about autism's inaccurate media portrayal.

I don't think they're lying exactly, but I think they're so severely misguided and hateful that they should all go chug some antifreeze.

*looks up Autism Speaks on YouTube, and every result is either a video of an autistic YouTuber commenting on why it's bad or an Autism Speaks ad with a lot of dislikes* Well, at least there's plenty of people that are starting to see it.

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Hey, everypony! This seemed like as good a place as any to ask....

I have a friend who has just recently gotten her Autism diagnosis, but has, of course, had a lot of trouble with social customs to begin with, not all of which I have the foggiest about. She is the absolute coolest, but has fallen under a depressive episode lately because she's afraid she'll scare all of those she cares about away from her; I'm not sure how, but she's reported trouble making and keeping friendships because although she comes from a good place, the signal seems to get scrambled from Point A to Point B. She's kind of a reverse Sunset Shimmer in the sense that she can't always pick up on when someone has an issue (so as far as she knows, unless they tell her exactly what's wrong, in which case she'll try to help best she can, they go from 0-60 in a blink with no warning), but her smile is just as contagious as her tears.

So, for instance, she tends to talk mostly about her interests, so some dislike holding lengthy conversations with her. Naturally, that's not a whole lot of fun, as nobody likes to be shut down in a passionate spiel about one of their favorite things. Or sometimes she makes a comment that is fine and well where she's standing, but, again, the signal gets scrambled and it comes off a different way than it was meant. Final recap, she is a total sonic rainboom of a person if you actually know her well, but she has trouble with her social skills and gets isolated or rejected more than a hyper-empathetic could bear. Are there any Autistic bronies in the house who could possibly share some advice regarding an Autistic's guide to social cues and customs, or getting the signal across without compromising your personality?

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