Saturday, August 11, 2018

Simon Baron Cohen Compares people who don't want chldren to be autistic to nazis and the ku klux klan

Recently, a new hashtag has emerged on twitter.  #endautismnow.  predictably, many neurodiversity proponents have taken umbrage at this, and have engaged in backlash on twitter.

One of their main complaints about this hashtag is that it was apparently originated by anti-vaxxer and controversial autism mom Jenny McCarthy.  Because some of us want to cure autistic people and prevent people from acquiring autism, we apparently are endorsing the fact that vaccines cause autism and the menace to public health that stopping vaccines would cause.

The most renowned person to pontificate vociferous objections to this new twitter campaign is Simon Baron Cohen.

Dr. Baron Cohen and his colleagues have been well known for making claims autistics have superior visual capabilities based on small sample sizes and mismatching of autistic children with younger controls who might not have the same development.

He has written that autism versus non-autism is not different from right-handedness or left-handedness.

He's written essays stating that autism should not be considered a disability or disorder.

His most recent contribution to the autism discourse are these words of wisdom on twitter:

I will have to show great restraint and not lose my temper here. It should be obvious to the good doctor that there is a difference between persons who don't want children to become autistic or cure them of their autism and people who commit murder as the nazis and members of the ku klux klan have done. One would think this would be especially obvious to someone who has a Ph.D. in psychology from a major university in the United Kingdom.

How can anyone take this man seriously?  Why are journals still publishing his articles and why are funding bodies still paying money for his research? 

I believe this is a new low, even for this person.  I believe Baron-Cohen should check into some mental health facility in the UK and get the help he needs. 


Anonymous said...

Well, I guess there's never a dull moment with the Baron Cohen family! :D

Anonymous said...

Puzzling that there are no medications for core symptoms, just because anatomy is different, doesn't mean pathology can't be eased. Maybe Autism being recognized for less than a century means less headstart to breakthroughs in medication.

The high prevalence and attention would make me think they’d find one or be on to something. People say this or that isn't going to work, but not just out of science, no, a lot from the “there is nothing that needs to be treated” crowd.

Why is there Ritalin for ADHD, Antipsychotics for SCZ, but nothing for ASD? Now for the former two, the medication counterbalances or eases the condition, medications are not fixes, but help, and I believe are vital to better outcomes in early intervention.

Yes, there are treatment resistant forms of almost all conditions, but if 1/3rd don't respond, they don't throw out the entire drug for them, yet I've read studies on drug trials for ASD where if even 20% show no response within a few weeks or a few patients have side effects, they throw it all out, EVERYTHING. I am not a conspiracy theorist, but I still think that there could be breakthroughs or they’d happen sooner if it weren’t for some things stopping them. Or even certain people! Like Baron-Cohen or Grandin? Not directly, but they influence people's mindsets. Someone needs to sit down on live tv and half a structured debate, maybe a TedTalk. I'd enjoy if the Casanovas gave one.

The new antidepressants big pharma churns out keep coming, and they say "may take half a year to see full effect". I sincerely believe that prozac, lithium, even penicillin would not be allowed to pass phase 2 if they applied the same bizarre standards for attempts on ASD medication.

Anonymous said...

I've seen actual material closer to being offensive. There are the bigoted trolls or people who wish to murder the disabled. Why don't they and neurodiversity fight it out? They don't, they keep to their own turf and prey on and bully who they know they have a shot of winning against.