Saturday, December 22, 2012
This is Jacob. This is autism.
I know I have fallen silent here again. This time it's because I have been overwhelmed by the fallout from the events of the past week. Newtown.
There has been a misguided media feeding frenzy focused on a possible autism diagnosis of the shooter, and erroneous speculation that autism was behind Adam Lanza's heinous acts.
There is much destructive misinformation spreading around the world.
Ignorant, spiteful people have created hate sites about how autism = violence, and proclaiming that autistic people are monsters who should all be rounded up and jailed or exterminated.
I just can't...
I can't even breathe when I think about this.
I have not been able to write about it yet, finding myself just too devastated, frightened and overwhelmed to form a cohesive sentence. (Hence the radio silence.)
But many many friends of mine have been writing, voices of love and light to meet and answer the tide of fear hate.
For starters, read these, here:
A letter to Elisabeth J.A. by Jillsmo
My Son Has Autism. Please Don’t Be Afraid. by Jo Ashline
When Children Die, It’s Time to Grieve and to Reflect, Not to Scapegoat by Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg
And also a movement sprang up, a photo meme: "This is Autism" - to put a face to autism as we know it, with words describing some of the wonderful, quirky, delightful people who are on the autism spectrum. Parents are sharing their children, adult advocates are introducing themselves.
And that I could do; thus this picture, with these words.
And we're all sharing it here, on the Autism Shines facebook page.
Come, see the beautiful shining faces of so many of us and our children. Share your own images. Meet some people with autism who are not violent scary monsters, but our wonderful children and our wonderful selves.
OK, I realize if you're a reader of my blog, I'm probably preaching to the converted, but please share this page widely and maybe it will reach someone who needs to hear it.
Peace to you all. More words here soon.