Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Open Season on Autistic Kids Continues

From Denis Leary's new book, "Why We Suck: A Feel-Good Guide to Staying Fat, Loud, Lazy and Stupid":

"There is a huge boom in autism right now because inattentive mothers and competitive dads want an explanation for why their dumb-ass kids can't compete academically, so they throw money into the happy laps of shrinks . . . to get back diagnoses that help explain away the deficiencies of their junior morons. I don't give a [bleep] what these crackerjack whack jobs tell you - yer kid is NOT autistic. He's just stupid. Or lazy. Or both."

What is it these days that these celebrities feel free to take potshots at kids with autism and their parents? This is a REAL epidemic that strikes so many families (like mine) without any warning. Yet, these idiot celebrities feel free to open their big fat yaps with their moronic ideas about how autism is some kind of "scam" and that many children who have it are "fakers."

I've witnessed up close what parents of autistic children have to go through, which includes two of my sisters. It's an incredible challenge they have to shoulder, but they adore their children and would do anything in the world for them.

It's simply shameful that jackasses like Leary who know absolutely nothing about it think it's fertile ground for cheap comedy. Leary should be ashamed himself, but as long as his book makes money, why should he care?

1 comment:

The Angry Tech said...

Late comment, but what the hell.

While these are probably irresponsible things for him to say, I think you gotta take a couple of things into consideration.

There is is a demonstrably increased rate of diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders where they would not have been years ago. Not talking about the (very real) accelerated incidence of autism, but rather broadening the spectrum to include milder autism disorders which have traditionally been considered "bad behavior." While acknowledging that an autism disorder may be at the root of the behavior is arguably of medical merit, these people may benefit more from tried-and-true traditional socialization & discipline (firm/corrective parenting) than they will from being labeled autistic and perceived/treated more like a severely autistic person than like a non-autistic person, when they are practically indistinguishable from the latter.

Does that make sense?

Also, this is precisely Leary's brand of nothing-sacred rant humor. He has suggested ridiculous things in his act countless times (e.g., cancer, rehab, rape), and I don't think it's reasonable to assume he wholeheartedly espouses all of them. The quoted statement is inflammatory and insensitive, but I've yet to find anyone who's actually read the chapter to see if it's an out-of-context passage from a larger rant, as he claims.