Saturday, July 25, 2009

Neurodiversity: Teach Your Children Well

At least some readers of this blog will remember some time ago that I wrote a post about a young lady who calls herself sadder but wiser girl this gal who did not like my writings that were unfavorable to the ND movement and she accused me of among other things being like a jew who was helping nazis kill other jews. After I wrote the blog post that I linked to a reader of autism's gadfly e-mailed me privately and told me this girl was only 15 years old. I had not bothered to look at her profile on the website at the time I wrote the post. This was in spite of its availability. So, at the time, I did not know how young she was.

Persons familiar with the sad saga and hardball tactics of club ND know the story of Kelly Beckham a 14-year-old girl who made a website called NT speaks in which she borrowed from the graphics of Autism Speaks webpage. AS threatened her with a lawsuit and because she did not want her parents to find out what she had done she deleted the website. AS dropped the threats of the lawsuit when they found out how young the girl was. This kid became a cause celebre' of the neurodiversity movement who used this as an excuse to call AS an oppressive bully.

Ari Ne'eman is now at the age 21, probably the most visible and prominent spokesperson for neurodiversity. We see that Ne'eman was preaching the neurodiversity party line going back to when he was in high school.

Last, but certainly far from least we see a rather interesting video of a cute 7-year-old autistic boy named Darby who discusses how much he detests a cure for autism.



We see the young lad, interviewed by someone (presumably his father), giving him what seems like some deliberate teleprompted queues that are designed as rather demagogic propaganda to help promote the neurodiversity movement.

I wonder if anyone sees a pattern here. I am reminded of an old song that was popular in my youth in the early 1970s by the group Crosby, Stills and Nash "Teach Your Children Well" For those who don't remember this song, here is the video:



Perhaps this could be neurodiversity's theme song. This is one of the hardball techniques that are used by the cyberbullies and hatemongers in the ND movement to generate their hateful propaganda and lies. Those who read my piece on my stories website urging persons to reject neurodiversity remember that I stated that neurodiversites behave like Christian missionaries trying to convert people to club ND who will use it as a tempting escape valve. Neurodiversity seems to have an idea who the best pickings are. Very small children, the younger the better. Have the adolescent girls, sadder but wiser girl and Kelly Beckham really have enough life experience to know better? They have never been out in the world or tried to hold down a job with their disability. They don't have the same experience to know these things that I have in my 50s. They are young and impressionable. Even the now adult (albeit young adult) Ari Ne'eman has never worked a job a day in his life. Yet he seems to feel that he is qualified to use his influence to lobby the government with public policy suggestions to help autistics work or get voc rehab without curing them. What would a 7 year old child know about any of these things. Where could he possibly have gotten ideas like these? What life experience has he had? He has not yet reached adolescence where celibacy, often the bane of autistic males, would play a role. There can be no question at all that ND went for these people because they are most vulnerable. Perhaps having a cute 7 year old child on a video talking about how bad a cure for autism would be would seem somehow charming. In the warped minds of persons who believe in neurodiversity, this could be used as a propaganda tool to help convert those and get more internet war mongers on their side.

It is not just children that are seen as vulnerable, but also adults that seem to have a lesser intelligence also. I have a friend with an ASD who has difficulties with expressive and receptive language. Some ND's befriended him hoping to convert him to their belief. They did for a while and he went around saying that he did not want to be cured. Then, finally, when he saw how bad his disability was, he was thankfully intelligent enough to see what a scam ND is. He decided he wanted a cure. These people no longer wanted to be his friends when they found they had no further use for him. This person is intelligent. To someone who does not know him well, the way he talks and has difficulty understanding things that are spoken to him would make him seem less intelligent than he really is. This is likely why ND tried to proselytize him.

These are the methods that ND bullies use. These people are very poor role models for children. They behave badly, they are rude, and in the case of one individual I can think of, they use gross profanity. As I have mentioned in some previous posts, "the autism bitch from hell" wants those of us with autism who wish to be cured strangled to death and turned into cat food. I wonder if the parents of these children feel these are people who are a good influence. I believe not.

I suppose, some of the members of the neurodiversity movement are old enough to remember the old Crosby Stills and Nash song. Therefore they believe they can win their puny little internet wars by teaching their children well.

31 comments:

Stephanie Lynn Keil said...

This makes me sick.

The sad thing about ASDs is that they are present from birth so this belief can be instilled in them from when they are very young.

But this whole Neurodiverse "idea" is present in EVERY disorder, especially mental disorders nowadays.

But, luckily, most mental disorders don't appear until at least late teen/adult years, such as bipolar and schizophrenia.

I went through this "Neurodiverse" crap with bipolar already. I wrote about it here.

Every disability community has radicals such as ND and NDs haunt the internet, most likely because of their autism.

So, I know from my bipolar experience that ND is just a bunch of BS: it is exactly the same, except with a different disorder.

SM69 said...

Hi

Well I did not manage to watch this first video in full, because I also agree that the child is clearly prompted and uses a lot of scripting/ echolalia to get the responses his father wants to hear. This child very likely does not have an opinion on autism per se, but only an opinion about his life and of course his life as any others should be valued. I agree with you that this sort of handling of children is abusive. I have seen this done by many parents proponent of ideology of various types.

The other issue I have with this is that if my son, and others like him were like this 7-year-old boy, I’d be totally delighted with this too and would cherish this. There is a big difference in functionality, health, opportunities, inclusion and chances for future between them and this 7 year old. The children I see at the clinic are much more severely affected. We should stop seeing AS as Autism, this is totally misleading. I am putting my first proposal ever for people with AS, and I bloody make it clear this is AS and not Autism. I am so sick of all these people who feel entitled to comment on Autism in general when all they know is AS, this includes SBC. But he is not the only one, how many researchers are interested into the mind of AS and publish it under the Autism name? Many, And when they are reminded of the broader reality, they turn a blind eye. Not only they don’t want to be faced with more challenging concepts and ideas but most of all, they don’t want to consider that their conclusions and generalisations could be erroneous.

Having said this, the children with AS I have met, even the very young ones appear to come up with ND concepts from a very early age and I have to say that in many instances, I was very surprised by what appeared to be totally genuine, spontaneous and sincere expressions. For example, a 9 year-old said to his mother, I don’t want people to say I have autism, I want people to say I am autistic. That sort of comment- his mother did not understand what he meant and she is not connected to any AS or ASD group of any kind, so she could not have put this into her son’s mind.

So, again, whilst I agree with some of the issues you raise in your post, I feel adding nuance to your message is needed.

Ender said...

Interesting song considering Steven Stills, from everything I have seen, is a strong propanant of neurodiversity. I have seen him say that he sees a bit of Henry (his aspie kid) in himself, and thats what helped him to become such a good guitarist. Was this intentional?

Ender said...

P.S. "These are the methods that ND bullies use. These people are very poor role models for children. They behave badly, they are rude, and in the case of one individual I can think of, they use gross profanity. As I have mentioned in some previous posts, "the autism bitch from hell" wants those of us with autism who wish to be cured strangled to death and turned into cat food. I wonder if the parents of these children feel these are people who are a good influence. I believe not." For a while there I thought you were talking about your pal John Best, pretty much everything you said could be used to describe him too.

Anonymous said...

One down:

http://gonzogalore.blogspot.com/2009/07/so-long-and-thanks-for-all-fish.html

Marius Filip said...

When the Soviet Army was at the gates of Berlin during WWII, Hitler used to send soldiers 13 years of age to battle the Russians.

Moreover, he made them believe that the Red Army was about to fall apart and all that was needed was "a little push".

Their push. The push of 13 yo innocent kids.

John Elder Robison said...

Jonathan, it does concern me that some ND advocates I talk to seem ingorant of the extent to which some people are disabled by autism.

I can't really imagine that many people would walk through schools for low functioning people with autism and say, "These people should be left alone."

At the same time, I think many in the more impaired side of the community don't have much grasp of how a less impaired person with autism may feel.

I think that great gulf is the foundation of the disagreements.

One of the great mysteries of science at Harvard's TMS lab is the fact that we can distinguish autism from, say, schezophrenia or bipolar via brain measurements. And we can distinguish autistic brains from neurotypical ones. But we do not yet have a measurable factor that indicates the degree of autistic impairment in the brain.

jonathan said...

Ender: Stephen Stills being one of the three people to sing this song has nothing to do with ND. This song was popular long before the concept of neurodiversity even existed.

Though I don't agree with all of John Best's behavior, he is only responding in what is basically self-defense against people who are attacking him. It is the NDs who have always been the bullies and the aggressors in all of these internet debates. Best only responds in kind because you and others trivialize the very severe autism of his child. Best might be the most polite guy in the world in real life. He has only been inflammed because of the internet bullying and hardball tactics of the ND crowd.

farmwifetwo said...

Is this suppose to be their response to the latest Autism Speaks video??

Appears to be using the same tactics to me... let's use the vulnerable to pedal our message.

I'm with the Asperger's is not Autism camp. As a parent with a child with severe, non-verbal PDD and another who at 2.5 was dx'd with mild PDD and now has NLD... Autism/PDD and Aspergers/NLD... aren't even close to being the same. IMO the elder will never speak for the younger.

jonathan said...

Farmwife: No, the video with the 7 year old boy predates the AS video by quite a bit, I believe.

Thelma said...

Jonathan,

Thelma thinks your last comment concerning foresam is pure-dee bull. Foresam attacks first, and Thelma's seen ya back the fool up on his blog where he's done the attacking first. Shame on ya.

If ya don't stand up when ya see someone being a bully, then ya are just as bad as the bully.

Stephanie Lynn Keil said...

I don't agree with most of what John says but he has always been kind to me.

On the other hand, I have been attacked by ND supporters for no reason at all other than stating my opinion.

"At the same time, I think many in the more impaired side of the community don't have much grasp of how a less impaired person with autism may feel."

You're right: I don't know what it is like to not be so disabled that I can't function in the real world. I have no idea what it is like to travel the country, study in Italy, have friends, have a boyfriend, give speeches and not have anyone notice anything is wrong with me.

I don't know what it feels like to not really be disabled in any way.

My fault. I should know better.

jonathan said...

Thelma: I've just checked out your blog, in particular the entry about me. Somehow I can't help but think it is very possible you are the autism bitch from hell in disguise.

Thelma said...

Thelma has no idea who the autism bitch from hell is, although if what foresam has written about her is the truth, I would have nothing to do with the gal (it's clear foresam lies with ease, though, so Thelma will be skeptical).

However, Thelma notes you ignored my point. If ya don't stand up when you see abuse being heaped on people who don't deserve it, you're as bad as the fool doing the abuse.

Ya gonna stand up and against Best's abuse or ya gonna stand with him? You're answer will say everything Thelma needs to know about ya, Mr. Jonathan.

And Thelma will note it on my blog, either way.

Ender said...

I didn't say that had anything to do with the song, just that the fact that it was sung and played by a guy who thanks, at least in part, his aspie like abilities, is interesting. Lets put it this way, if not for Steven Stills having aspie like abilities, this song might have never been famous (or even written).

John Elder Robison said...

Stephanie, when I suggested people in this comminuty often don't understand the other ends of our spectrum, I did not do so to assign blame.

It's just an observation.

You also say you don't agree with much of what I say but I'm always nice. I think our commuinity would be a lot better off if others followed that simple rule. It's not necessary to attack each other when we disagree.

I know you disagreed with my suggestion that the burden is on us to conform to society's mores. We can't force the rest of the world to adapt to us. Given your disagreement, what would you have us do as an alternative strategy?

I believe the TMS therapy I am involved with has the potential to remediate some aspects of our social disability. You and anyone else here is free to sign up to participate in this research.

You can always write me if you'd like to learn more.

jonathan said...

Ender: Actually it was Graham Nash that wrote the song, not Stephen Stills. I guess you will have to make sure his son has AS also and rebecome an armchair clinician and diagnosis Nash with AS also.

Ender said...

Oh sorry, I wasn't sure so I took I guess figuring I had a 33% chance of being right. But where was I an armchair whatever? Steven Stills son does have asperger's, he was in "Autism: the Musical" for crying out loud (which is also where Steven Stills mentions how his aspielike traits helped him do what he does).

Beyond all that I still could be right. Steven Stills didn't have to write the song himself for it not to be written without him, who is to say Nash writes the song if he never has Steven Stills in the band :-p. I could easy make the claim that without Stills the band never takes off and that song never becomes famous, or maybe even written.

Stephanie Lynn Keil said...

"I know you disagreed with my suggestion that the burden is on us to conform to society's mores. We can't force the rest of the world to adapt to us. Given your disagreement, what would you have us do as an alternative strategy?"

I have tried the ND route: I tried the "acceptance" and "support" route both in attending college and having a job and I failed miserably.

I know from experience, not merely speculation, that a person with autism needs proper treatment in order to function in society and that their autistic symptoms need to be eliminated as much as possible.

At the moment I am doing social skills therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy and whatever else my psychiatrist thinks will help me.

Society could not adapt to me so I must adapt to it. Perhaps those with very mild disabilities see it the other way around and this I understand since most of them have jobs, friends, etc. They may feel that society does not truly accept them occasionally but they can function perfectly well, or so it appears to me since I do not even come close to that level.

John Elder Robison said...

Stephanie, what you have written is the same thing I believe. That is, we have to learn to fit in by whatever means work.

Some can learn social skills on their own, but most of us do better with some kind of professional guidance like you describe.

Just as there is a range of affect in autism, there is a range of therapeutic intervention needed to get by.

It's not actually clear from your most recent comment what it is that you disagree with me on.

SM69 said...

I know the conversation has moved on to other issues by now, but it has been pointed out that my comment was perhaps inaccurate and not as helpful as it should have been, so, I would like to clarify what I have said with regard to differences between AS and ASD.

Of course we should all work together and face every aspects relating to AS and ASD as a single and ideally united community, each of us bringing our own expertise and knowledge of these conditions. And yes of course, even someone with mild AS can struggle a great deal, even though his overall difficulties are “minor” by comparison to someone who is say for example, non verbal, in constant state of agitation or in full passiveness, self-injuring, screaming and cannot be cared for in most educational settings, and requiring 2 adults at all time to be fully supervised.

But I know that even AS people can fail very badly and be depressed, excessively anxious, under medication, isolated, etc etc. But it is my sincere opinion if these people are failing it is not because a cure is not available to them, though they too might wish one if that was available, but it is essentially because the system has not yet adapted to their needs and is insufficiently supportive, at every levels. So, my sincere belief is that for these people, the system should adapt, and no cure of such is needed as priority, anyway, there is no cure available, though issues of attention and anxieties can be alleviated with some interventions. Equally, there are approaches that do assist these people to understand some of their social and cognitive differences. But with a better system in place, I sincerely hope and trust that a much better equilibrium and overall inclusion can be reached for these people. I think this is a true reality and one that will be increasingly take place in the very near future.

On the other hand, a child or adult who is on the more severe end of the spectrum will very unlikely have any chance to work, be married, have children, be independent. ~this is a very different kettle of fish in my opinion. For these individuals, the only realistic options are full blown and very intensive interventions. Some interventions do work, and they should be offered freely, at least as a trial to evaluate if they could bring benefits to the individuals concerned. To request, demand, act against such support being provided to more severely affected people is simple inhumane, unkind and selfish, but most of all ill-informed, based on preconception and doctrines.

And my other point was, and I stand by this, that we cannot oversimplify the medical, behavioural and educational issues of more severe autism from studies and knowledge conducted with milder forms, or solely AS. In the same way that some people might like the idea of self-diagnosis themselves to Asperger S. because in some ways it is sort of trendy, or make a greater sense to them, some researchers and carers also like the idea to work with Asperger people and at the same time, present as being very vocal on their knowledge of Autism in general. The same people would find themselves highly moved away from their comfort zone if they had really to deal with a child who is totally disconnected, very agitated, often with challenging behaviours, breaking things, and more. I do not want to be negative, but we have to be specific and very realistic. These people need a lot of care and they need full recognition too. They need intervention and there are no alternative complacent and unrealistic views that would fit in my opinion.

Stephanie Lynn Keil said...

John,

Some NDs are so loony that I have gone slightly insane trying to keep my sanity. Not everyone believes what I wrote, John. You are obviously one of the saner ones, thank God. But interacting with the insane side of ND long enough will make you a bit loopy towards their opinions.

And Kudos for also not being a jerk. Some NDs will curse and insult you for no reason other than for stating your opinion.

Stephanie Lynn Keil said...

John Rob,

When I made the statement, "I don't agree with most of what John says but he has always been kind to me" I was referring to a different John, John Best.

I think you thought I was talking about you! Sorry for the confusion!

Foresam said...

John Robison,
ND is not trying to achieve any understanding here. The only way they can start seeming human is to stop using the word "autism" in place of "Asperger's".
That deception is intentional.

Jonathan,
This is the same technique Hitler used to brainwash the youth. Every 20 year old who believes the ND crap was brainwashed by the words of Frank Klein as propagated by the rest of the cult of ND's.

Oh yeah, which ND idiot do you think is playing the role of Thelma?

Thelma said...

Stephanie,

Thelma wonders if you've considered that perhaps the loonies that have been mean to ya simply because they are loonies and not because of any particular place they might be on the autism spectrum?

Sometimes, dear, an ass is just an ass. Ya ain't gotta put up with nonsense, dear.

Ender said...

John, you use the word autism is the place of asperger's all the time when you talk about how widespread "autism" is. Why should we have to follow rules you create when you don't?

Droopy said...

I have the same question for Thelma, who said:

"If ya don't stand up when you see abuse being heaped on people who don't deserve it, you're as bad as the fool doing the abuse."


So, where are you, "Thelma" -- and the *rest* of Neurodiversity when a rather notably NON-Autistic Baggs is out there performing a gross fraud against all autistics by making a career for herself out of mocking and imitating the existance of someone who is autistic -- namely me.

The fact that the rest of you Neurodiversity stand around defending her doing this, supporting it and chiming in to bully me for standing up for myself and speaking out against it, the few that aren't actually joining in the bandwagon simply looking the other way, well that says quite abit about Neurodiversity, now doesn't it?


But so now you're here, "Thelma," ironically asking just the very sort of question I've been asking so long of Neurodiversitees, often one at a time as I find them, so here we go:

but what about you, "Thelma" (whoever you may be when you're at home) hmm?


Ya gonna stand up and against Baggs' abuse or ya gonna stand with her? You're answer will say everything Droopy needs to know about ya, Ms Thelma.

K said...

"Ya gonna stand up and against Baggs' abuse or ya gonna stand with her? "

Speaking for myself, I stand with Droopy! I've seen too much evidence and apparently been ripped off by Baggs as well (more to come on that).

Thelma said...

Droopy,

Thelma right appreciates the tip o' that to how she talks. Now I reckons ya could have been being an ass, but I'll give ya the benefit of the doubt on it this time, darlin'.

I don't know Baggs, don't know nothing about the situation. I know bullies when I see them. I ain't got no fish to fry, so to speak concerning this here fool game ya'll got goin' on regardin' treatin' people decent, so ain't got much to say on that, neither.

If people is representin' they disabled if they ain't, it ain't right. If people tryin' to armchair diagnose, that ain't right, neither, unless it's dumbasses ya be diagnosin', dear, and then ya cain't hardly go wrong, can ya, Droopy.

Don't escape me none that Mr. Jonathan ain't answered the question.

Nor yaself, neither, Droopy. Might wanna think on who you be wantin to be, a stand up fella or not.

K said...

"If people is representin' they disabled if they ain't, it ain't right. If people tryin' to armchair diagnose, that ain't right, neither, unless it's dumbasses ya be diagnosin', dear, and then ya cain't hardly go wrong, can ya, Droopy."

Well Thelma, I happens to be from Appalachia. Your poor attempt at making fun of us is noted. I thinka' you be ABFH, and I say shame on ya' for making fun of po white and black folks. Your class and racist tone be noted.

I guess u be of the opinion dat it's perfectly fine to pull an Al Jolsen. U be down wit dat, huh?

Yo friend b rippin' me off too. More 2 come.

jonathan said...

The commenting here has gotten ludicrous. I am closing further comments for this thread.