My article, “It’s Not Always About The Autism“, is up at Pajamas Media.
Saturday, July 26th, 2008, 11:12 am | Blog bites | RSS feed
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and it’s awesome!
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Let’s just say you’re not welcome in India, what, with your tendency to treat sacred cows badly and all.
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Dang. And here I was looking forward to going to a McDonald’s in Delhi and asking “Where’s the beef?!!”
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Why would a parent put their special needs child onto an airplane anyway? Part of the air travel deal is to be belted down for hours at a time. Either, find a way for junior to cope, be it with duct tape or barbiturates, or don’t try to put junior on the plane.
As for these “out of control” children, where is the Dad? When Mom says, “Just wait until your Father gets home!” It should mean something.
I am, as you know, Kate, the mother of a child with childhood onset schizoaffective disorder, Aspergers w/various autistic spectrum traits and severe anxiety disorder. The parents that would put their children on an airplane are the nuts. As much as I hate and despise Michael Savage and agree, he has as much of a right to spout his insanity as I have to shut off my radio when he comes on, the fact remains that any parent that would put an autistic child on an airplane needs some psychiatric help of their own. I wouldn’t even dream of putting my child back in public school let alone get on a city bus with him and the thought of an airplane flight? Ha! That’s when someone would need to consider my mental status.
As for autism being the diagnosis of the decade, scientists have actually been studying the reason for the increase for quite a while now and have pinpointed 3 major areas of the world where there is higher rate of autistic children being born than anywhere else, those places are California’s “Silicon Valley,” Dublin, Ireland, and Switzerland. All three of these areas being major centers for technology and software development. The theory that is coming about is that like with most mental illnesses, with each generation the genetic risk increases and the illness is worse with each passing generation and in the case of autism now, they believe that a lot of those geek moms & dads having offspring are actually undiagnosed with Aspergers and when they procreate they are at a high risk for having a child with autism as Aspergers is a high functioning-high intelligence form of autism.
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“And that’s something the autism community, with all of its focus on autism awareness, fighting discrimination, and promoting inclusiveness for autistic kids, just isn’t getting with respect to Michael Savage’s comments: inclusion is a two-way street.”
What an ignorant little witch you are, Katherine. You must be jealous (in a sick, pathetic, twisted way) of all the attention autism is getting. You must be afraid deep down that you and your children must be missing out on something.
Your comment doesn’t even make sense. Michael Savage’s comments were FACTUALLY INCORRECT and his opinions are distortions of medical realities. Therefore, legally, his words were SLANDER, and that’s not free speech, you *****.
I have a 10 year old son with autism and we don’t fly for the exact reasons you stated in your article. I don’t feel we’ve earned special privileges because of his autism. I’d be happy to trade his autism for him to have a normal life. Instead he will need to live with my wife and I his entire life.
Michael Weiner is.
News flash, moron: uttering untruths about a person on the radio isn’t slander; it’s libel.
More importantly, it’s apparent to most people that Savage was spouting off his own ignorant opinion. Had you bothered to read the article (you can read, can’t you, M?) you’d notice that I didn’t agree with him.
Fitting that you chose the word “ignorant” m… It describes your opinion. And that’s just it, an opinion. Savage, Franken, Limbaugh, et al are ENTERTAINERS. Their job is to create a listening market by dispensing their opions. The more electrifying, the bigger the market, the bigger the ad revenue. Opinion offered to generate ad revenue. If you choose to accept that opinion as fact, then it is really you who is the ignorant one.
Let’s assume that autism and it’s related conditions are bona fide maladies. That does not give those so afflicted the right or the superlative ability to harm or endanger others. You have no “right” to fly. If you cannot abide by the laws pertaining to air flight, you should choose an alternate form of transport. And I do expect parents to know better. Accommodations are made for the ill and disabled all the time, but we do not do things like allow the blind to drive a long haul truck. Yes, public funds paid for the roads and everyone should have access to them, but we are not going to willingly and knowingly endanger the other users of the roads.
And in the spirit of full disclosure… I’m the *parent* that will probably feel the need to get up from the table right when that insolent brat on Wheelies is gliding through the restaurant. I’ve watched that kid wipe out a waitress (who was told later by the kid’s parent to “watch out next time”), crash into *my* table, run into a wall and endanger everyone (including the restaurant’s liability policy). You don’t really have the right to cause harm to others. And that goes for your kids, too.
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Rich, I just can’t imagine what you’re going through. I have no doubt that you’d trade his autism for, well, just about anything.
Which is not to say that I doubt the depth of your love for your son — if anything, I think parents of autistic children learn a more selfless form of love than the rest of us.
That’s the nature of autism: it’s a thief. It steals children away and locks them into a world to which even their parents are denied a map. It steals the dreams of parents at the same time: the dreams of the experiences they’d share, the dreams of what their children’s lives would be like, and the dreams of the adults their children would one day become.
You’ve clearly realized your son’s limitations and have decided that flying with him isn’t good for him. It’s stressful on the kids in ways that they shouldn’t be expected to overcome. (I say this as someone who worked for 3 years as a supervisor in an adult sheltered workshop and for 4 years before that in a “children’s home”.)
Unfortunately, that’s the new style of parenting special needs children: pretending that they DON’T have special needs. There’s only one person that benefits: the parent who gets to still feel mainstream. The kids (and later the adults) who get exposed to society without the caveat of their special needs wind up feeling bad about themselves.
That’s what frustrated me about the American Airlines incident. I didn’t understand why the mother put her son through that. My own son is “on the autism spectrum”, which is to say that he has “narrowly focused interests and verbose, pedantic communication… a fact into which most Pajamas Media commenters didn’t bother to inquire. I took him on a flight from KCMO to Honolulu, HI when he was 3 and truly in his most symptomatic state. My husband and I spent the majority of that 13 hour flight cradling our son in the lavatory rather than inflicting his behavior on other passengers… or exposing him to THEIR condemning looks.
Having said that, I knew to buckle him in. Even as he screamed. Even as it ripped my heart out to subject him to such an obvious discomfort. It was necessary — the military was moving us to Hawaii and, let’s face it, you can’t *drive* there.
So as one parent whose child is only “mildly” autistic to one who is brave enough to say your child lives with this every day — as do you — I applaud you. And I wish there were few Michael Savages in this world.
Because, as you pointed out, Michael (air name “Savage”) Weiner is. I did not at any point state in my article at PM that I agree with him. I do not. I cannot.
But I do believe he’s entitled to state his opinion, and the corollary is that I also believe the rest of us have a right to call him a misguided idiot.
I just don’t understand why so many Pajama Media readers didn’t catch that. Thank YOU for having done so.
Sacred cows make great hamburgers. 🙂
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They’re particularly excellent with a bit of A-1 and a pile of sauteed mushrooms.
I agree with Micheal. I know several people who have chosen to blame bad behavior or stress of life, on their child’s state of mind. I think that every parent needs to STAND up and BE A REAL PARENT!! You know in the 60’s-80’s everyone has ADD or ADHD.. And no one was on drugs! And now you cant even get through on day without hearing a pathetic mother go on about how awful her life is because of “autism”. When I know that it is because of lack of parenting. If these parents to their roll seriously and punished their kids accordingly, there would be no problems. I deal with a mother on a day to day basis who has a child with autism. And for 8 years, she has used it to blame all her life’s problems for it. She is pathetic to do that. And then she passes it on to the rest of the family and they all think that ALL their kids have problems. Give ME A BREAK!!!! I think Michel is RIGHT!!! I think if there was a dad, or mother who actually taught their children discipline and manners, autism wouldn’t even be considered.
GROW UP AND BE A REAL PARENT!
My youngest is autistic. She is 5 1/2 years old. We did not know what was wrong with her for years and we tried all that discipline that Savage said needed to be done. Nothing worked. Why? Because my child does not live in the same “world” we do. Does that mean she doesn’t get disciplined anymore? Not at all. She does – but in a way that works in her world. I feel for the mother of the child on the plane, but in the end, as the mother she had to know that, especially in today’s world, uncontrollable behavior isn’t going to be tolerated, despite what disability one might have. I recognize that myself. Knowing my daughter, I would never subject her to a plane ride because I know she can’t handle that. Heck, sometimes she can’t handle car rides. At least in a car I can pull over and do what needs to be done to calm her down. If the safety of the general public (i.e. the kid at mass, the children at school) are in danger due to an autistic child’s aggression (which unfortunately is part of the disease), then that child SHOULD be removed from the situation. I totally agree.
My youngest can be aggressive, most especially to her middle sister (for some reason she doesn’t get aggressive towards her oldest sister). Do we allow her to get away with it? Not at all. Through OT we have learned how to discipline her and it works. Her aggression has gone down a lot. We have learned how to help her understand the world her body lives in, even if her mind doesn’t live here. One thing we learned through OT is that autistic children MUST HAVE discipline in their lives – that is true!! But conventional discipline doesn’t work. And what works one day may not work the next. Every day is a new adventure with an autistic child. Every day is a learning experience, for both the child and the parents. And every day can be filled with joy when the proper steps are taken to care for, teach, and discipline the child in the proper way. Savage’s way is not the proper way.
Well its got people talking!
Now, now, you two. Feeding the trolls is like getting a Mogwai wet or feeding him after midnight. 🙂
But they wuz hungry!
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