Monday, January 21, 2008

email exchange with jypsy

This is an addendum to my previous post. I am posting an email that i sent to jypsy where i stated that using the term all may have been a slight exaggeration and show the several instances where i give jypsy examples from the internet and books where at least some autistics (I originally used the term "a number") seem to have the idea that most if not all persons on the spectrum agree with them, i think this will show that what she was saying on Michelle's TMOB board about my not backing up what i said was not true:

the words "consensus" into goggle or some other search engine won't yield results. I only meant that there are a number of autistic persons, including your friends at, who seem to take the attitude that the vast majority of autistics seem to have a certain point of view. I will concede that maybe all is a slight exaggeration. The word consensus was my own phrase, no one else's, but i was just trying to paraphase the point that there are a number of persons who seem to feel that there is a point of view that most autistics seem to have. I have already given you the list of people in the usenet group who seem to feel that way, I will do so again someone named luramao, antonia pallman( ithink her last name was) and anna hayward I think here name was ms. hayward said "I was the exception to the rule" as i told you before you can go to groups in google and run my email address which i posted under in that group and probably find a lot of these posts though they are all several years old. you can read dawn prince hughes book song of a gorilla nation and she espouses this point of view in this book. John robison does in his book look me in the eye. and john michael carley on this radio show he was on espoused this point of view.


John Elder Robison said...

Pardon me, but what point of view was I espousing?

best wishes

jonathan said...

that autistic people don't want a cure for autism. However, I am autistic and I wish there were a cure for autism, so you did not mean me.

John Elder Robison said...

Well, I never made a blanket statement about "all people want/don't want a cure." In my book, I do talk about our desire for empathy and compassion from others. I believe that desire is virtually universal among all people who feel different.

I am pretty high functioning, and I want understanding more than anything else.

But you know . . . I understand what you're saying too. . . There have been plenty of times in my life when I have wanted more than anything else to be "just a regular normal person"

I'm really smart, and I have great focus on things that interest me, but genius just makes me weird (in other people's eyes.) It does not make me happy.

Luckily, I've been able to make my way OK.

jonathan said...

Hi John thanks for your comment. I went back to the book store and re-read your book and I could not find any blanket statement that you made about the wants of autistic people. I did not re-read the whole book, so maybe i was mistaken about that, idon't know. What i read that you did say was that there was no cure for asperger's and that there did not need to be one. Though I disagree with that statement it is not what my debate with jypsy is about.

I did re-examine Dawn Prince Hughes book and on page 3 she does say "I and others who are autistic do not want to be cured" second sentence since jypsy is so keen on my documenting everything. I think this qualifies as someone saying "all" not "most". So now i have at least three people who did say "all". One other person who referred to "The usual view of autism" came very close to saying all, so when I was talking about her saying all may have been just slight exaggeration with the emphasis on slight. I think that one problem is that jypsy and other people due to asperger's have a rather concrete way of thinking and take things too literally. I am glad you can understand my desire not to have what I consider this disability and I hope I am not boring you or disrupting any activity you might have been involved in with the minutae of an ongoing debate i am having with someone else that won't seem to go away.

storkdok said...

Jonathan, I, too, have thought that the definition of neurodiversity meant that there was no disability, and that many autistics did not want a cure because of it. The reason I thought this was that it is written this way in Wikipedia. Here is a quote from them.

"Neurodiversity is an idea that asserts that atypical (neurodivergent) neurological development is a normal human difference that is to be tolerated and respected as any other human difference.[1] The concept of neurodiversity is embraced by some autistic individuals and people with related conditions, who believe that autism is not a disorder, but a part of their identity, so that curing autistic people would be the same as destroying their original personalities. Proponents prefer the term over such labels as "abnormal" and "disabled"."

I have been reading various blogs and books from different autistics, trying to understand how autistics think and feel about their differences. I can see from your discussions with Michelle and Jypsy, that you all have different viewpoints on this.

I want to say I appreciate each and every one who is expressing their thoughts and feelings on this subject.

I do remember that you expressed some of these thoughts to me almost 4 years ago at the Unlocking Autism meeting in DC.

Thank you, and best wishes!