Autism is a mysterious and puzzling disease, and children who suffer from having been diagnosed with autism are equally puzzling and mysterious. But the remarkable actions of Joe Autie can give us valuable insight into the mind with autism. Autie, 32, is a person who experiences a label of autism, but has overcome his disability and managed to do something.
Emily Expert, who has never met Autie but has
met other people with autism, and knows countless people who know people with
autism, runs an organization for family members of children with autism.
According to Expert, “This really remarkable thing that Autie has done can help
us all to understand what goes on inside the mind of a child with autism.”
Many people who make their living
talking about autism agreed that it is extraordinary that Joe Autie has done
something in spite of his handicaps. Experts also agreed that it was definitely
Autie’s autism which caused him to do this particular thing. “We can assume that
because one person with autism did this thing, all people with autism are also
drawn to do this thing,” said Dr. Scientist, an autism researcher. “The question
is – why?”
Of course, because autism is such a mysterious affliction, we
may never know truly know why.
How does Joe Autie feel about his
achievement? “We’re very proud of him,” said his mother.
agrees, but she also cautioned that even though Autie’s actions do, of course,
give us universal insight into the inner worlds of people with autism, we must
be careful that none of those insights are positive in nature.
a very inspiring story and has a lot to teach us about people with autism,” said
Expert, “but it’s important to bear in mind that the very fact that Autie
managed to do something is evidence of how high-functioning he is. Many children
with autism never manage to do anything. Autie’s actions are extraordinary and
praiseworthy, but they are the exception, and they definitely don’t reflect well
on autism or people with autism as a group.”
that was my best shot at writing an article about autism! How do you think I
Here's why I'm attempting satire: this last week William LeFever, an
autistic hiker who'd gotten lost in the desert, was found by a rescue team. Articles
about this occurrence all featured a sentence like this: "Authorities
credited autism training at least in part for helping them locate LeFever. One
of the rescuers suggested searching near the river because he learned that those
with autism are often drawn to water, reports The Salt Lake Tribune."
can all spot the flaws in that logic, right? We all know that there's not
actually any evidence that autistic people are "drawn to water," right? Everyone
understands that LeFever was by the water not because he's autistic but because
humans need water to survive, right?
The problem is that
autistic people are considered so exotic and mysterious that you can say pretty
much anything about autism in a news article and get away with it.