Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Neurodiversity Handbook for Disempowering Autistic Children

PRE-NOTE: This handbook is also known as the Neurodiversity Handbook and is a clumsy satire of another clumsy satire.


NOTE: This "handbook" is a work of clumsy satire. It is meant to point out some ways that people dis-empower and violate the rights of autistic children, as well as parents and other carers who actually know them, care for them, are responsible for their well being and advocate on their behalf . As a Neurodiversity Advocate and ASAN member, disempowering autistic children and violating their human rights are practices I strongly disapprove of every February 29th.

Strategy 1. Make sure you have an autism disorder diagnosis of some kind.

If you are currently diagnosed with ADD, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or some other unrelated disorder, lobby an enlightened neuro-scientist/researcher, or actual practicing doctor, to give you a Pervasive Developmental Disorder diagnosis preferably Autistic Disorder. If all you can wrangle is an Aspergers Disorder diagnosis, not to worry, you can still start your own Autism self advocacy network because you are "on the spectrum". You are now licenced to offer the perspective of all "auties" and "aspies". CNN, CBC and the New Yorker will soon be pounding on your door.

Strategy 2. Establish a media center.

Organizations like, which sound like, are very helpful as media centers. They appear to be very progressive and generally promote progressive, environmental and humanitarian causes. itself, if you can hook up with them, can offer good cover for your regressive campaign to dis-empower autistic children and violate their human rights as defined in international legal instruments like the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of the Child (1959).

3. Deny that autism disorders are medical disorders.

Having obtained a medical diagnosis of one of the "autism disorders" you must now argue that autism is not a medical disorder. It is just a natural variation, This strategy is essential to your success in dis-empowering autistic children and violating their rights to treatment. International legal documents like the UN Declaration of the Rights of the Child insist that children have a right to medical treatment. It will make your anti-autism treatment campaign much more difficult to sell if you acknowledge that autism is in fact a medical condition, a neurological disorder.

It may seem contradictory, confused, illogical, inane, even irrational, to seek a medical diagnosis for an autism disorder and then tell the world that autism is NOT in fact a medical disorder. And of course it is contradictory, confused, illogical, inane, even irrational. But not to worry. The lightweights at CNN, CBC and other major media outlets are not likely to pick up on such little details.

4. Attack anyone who speaks the truth about the negative realities of autism disorders.

Do not let anyone get away with telling the world that their autistic child engages in serious self injurious behavior, has serious communication challenges and understanding of the world, or faces a life of dependency. It is usually concerned parents who love their children, care for them daily and actually know them as individuals that speak openly on such negative facts. It is crucial for your own self importance and credibility as an autistic spokesperson bent on dis-empowering autistic children that you be seen as knowledgeable about these children you don't actually know.

You will have to discredit such parents by accusing them of spreading harmful negative stereotypes about "auties". They may be factually correct but they make you feel bad and are therefore wrong. Be sure to portray such parents as over-emotional, desperate, delusional and even dangerous. Media can usually be counted on to go along with this strategy.

5. Criticize any reference to functioning levels or severity of autism spectrum diagnoses.

It will be a hard sell to convince people that you know better than a parent who actually knows their own child what life is like for their autistic child and what is good for them. The task is also complicated by your obvious abilities with language as you hob nob with neuroscientists, write sophisticated internet essays and appear before international media. It violates common sense to suggest that you have much in common with a 12 year old who struggles to read Dr. Seuss or does not understand the danger to their life posed by automobile traffic. Therefore you must relentlessly attack any attempt to distinguish between Aspergers, High Functioning Autism and Low Functioning Autism.

Only if you pull off this scam will you be able to convince public authorities that a low functioning autistic child with limited communication skills should not be treated or cured and further more does not want to be treated and cured. Because, after all, you say so.

Strategy 6 Consult the Greek and Roman Classics

If you find yourself in a pinch and need an authority for the argument that autism is 100% genetic, that "autistics" do not want to be cured, or that you should speak for the autistic child who can not speak for herself, instead of her parents, consult the wisdom of the Greek and Roman Classics as revealed in The 10 Neurodiversity Commandments. When there is no scientific, legal, common sense or moral basis to your arguments The 10 ND Commandments are good backup. Trust them, rely on them, do not question them.


Bookmark and Share


jonathan said...

you forget about spreading ridiculous hate and propaganda like claiming people who want cures are really trying to find ways of aborting autistic fetuses.

Also, forgot that they insist that they be placed on the board of directors of an organization they despiste who they are claiming only exists to abort autistic fetuses so they can rip off the hard earned capital of such an organization to pursue their own agenda.

kristina said...

Thanks for reading!

Unknown said...


You are right but the list could in fact be even longer. Had to stop somewhere.

Unknown said...


You are quite welcome.

And you are welcome to continue to visit Facing Autism in New Brunswick.

John Best said...

Here's the link to a course outline on how to become a neurodiverse nitiwt:

I think everyone at must have Aced this course.