Last night, Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. Eastern daylight savings time, a man entered a gym in the vicinity of Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. He walked into a room where a "Latin impact" aerobics class was being held. He turned out the lights and drew a gun out of his gym bag. He started shooting, killing three women and then killing himself. This story is already getting media attention. Apparently, the man was frustrated by the fact that he was 48 years old and had not had a girlfriend for a long time. In fact he kept a detailed online diary describing his frustrations and his plan to go out and kill some women at some point; apparently revenge for being rejected so much. Looking at the diary we see his occupation was a software designer, a job that Simon Baron-Cohen, Temple Grandin and others have claimed requires autistic traits. The same thing that Bill Gates who has been diagnosed with autism by some members of the ND community has done. Sodini had written:
The biggest problem of all is not having relationships or friends, but not being able to achieve and acquire what I desire in those or many other areas," said an entry dated Sunday. "Everthing stays the same regardless of the effert I put in. If I had control over my life then I would be happier. But for about the past 30 years, I have not."
Sound familiar? Well, this is someone with computer skills and social impairments who was frustrated by celibacy. Perhaps neurodiversity could diagnose him with autism as they have diagnosed Bill Gates. I know, I've been there as have many others including David Miedzianik who has written about it. Of course, most persons who suffer from loneliness regardless of whether or not they are autistic will not go out on a shooting spree, but it is frustrating. This man was clearly deranged. He may or may not have had an autism spectrum disorder, but I feel in order to be fair neurodiversity should take the bad with the good. If they are going to preach about what a gift autism is and say that Bill Gates, Stephen Spielberg, Einstein, Jefferson, etc. prove that autism is such a gift because these individuals have or had it, why not say that Sodini may have been autistic also.
Neurodiversity in fact has done the opposite. While I concede that in general persons with autism and/or Asperger's are for the most part law abiding citizens who are more likely to be victims of crimes rather than criminals themselves, there are a small subset of persons with autism spectrum disorders who do commit sometimes violent crimes as part of their disorder. This has been written about in the studies of Murrie and Barry-Walsh who wrote about some case studies of persons with Asperger's who had committed various crimes, such as sexual assault, arson, etc. and talked about the feasibility of an insanity defense of these people based on their diagnosis of Asperger's. Ari Ne'eman has used these studies to try to show that persons with autism do not commit crimes. We can see from his statements that Ne'eman has either never read the studies he quotes from or is deliberately misrepresenting them. I have written about this in a previous post.
Neurodiversity claims to be about human rights. Apparently the main right that they fight for and feel people are violating, is their right not to hear autism being described as a bad thing, autistics being described as flawed or bad employees or being any sort of an affliction. They are abusive to me and other autistics who dare to publicly say they hate autism and wish there were a cure. But what about my right, to lead my life the way I want, to think and feel the way I want and my first amendment rights of free speech on the internet or elsewhere? It seems that ND wants to deprive me and others who feel as I do of those rights. Assuming that armchair diagnoses can be made of Bill Gates and others why not of George Sodini? Whose rights will ND violate next? The family members of those killed by Sodini who want to feel that autism is a bad thing because it may have indirectly killed their loved ones?