Lessons on living with autism" Boston Globe columnist Joanna Weiss has presented without any contrary view, critique or informed context the views of the founder of the College Internship Program and its founder Michael McManmon on a number of autism related issues. In Weiss World autism is high functioning autism and Aspergers. In Weiss World autism is not a medical disabilty at all, it is a social disability. It is the "autism" of Mr. McManmon who, according to the article, "probably" has Asperger's:
"For McManmon, self-knowledge came years after he founded the program. It was his staff that pointed out that he probably had Asperger’s, which explained his vast energy, his entrepreneurial skills, his trouble managing personal relationships. It also explained his interest in 1984 — when kids with social disabilities were getting deinstitutionalized — in finding ways to ease their transition to independent life."
Joanna Weiss takes a cheap and dirty shot at parents and professionals who seek to find cures for autism without mentioning the differences in severity that make Autistic Disorder much more than social awkwardness for the majority of persons who suffer from the medical disorder:
"The question of how to help them isn’t flashy, controversial, or celebrity-studded. That may be why far more attention goes to the torrid debate over autism’s causes, the hunt for ways that the disorder can be “cured.’’
The staff at the College Internship Program chafes at the notion that autism is something to cure or defeat. A diagnosis is a piece of your identity, says the program’s founder, Michael McManmon. His philosophy centers on self-knowledge. “If you understand who you are and what makes you tick,’’ he said recently, “then you can alter it and you can fit into the world.’’
So there you have it. For Michael McManmon, who "probably" has Asperger's , and for Boston Globe columnist Joanna Weiss who offers his opinions without contrary perspective or context, "autism" is just a social thing. Questions about cause and cure of autism are torrid and flashy bits of celebrity studded nonsense. They are not questions that agonize parents of children with actual Autistic Disorders who live with their child's self injury, danger of being lost from ordinary life realities like automobile traffic, or the intellectual disability which characterizes the "vast majority". In Weiss World those with "autism" do not end up living in institutional care. For Joanna and Michael autism is just some social awkwardness that can be addressed with a journey of inner discovery.
From this article it seems that Micheal McManmon might or might not have Asperger's.