It just happened again. Someone brought up a “cure” for Autism. Some comments were thoughtful. Others were clearly written by people who feel overwhelmed by Autism in their families. More than one person pointed out that a cure would allow their loved one to “be a better person.”
Or, to “relieve their suffering.” Perhaps to “make it easier to fit in.” I was just messaged that if I don’t want to be judged, I shouldn’t judge. Yes, this is a semi-live post. Oh, look. A cure would “make society better” and “cost less money.” These are apparently perfectly valid reasons for wanting to change the very fiber of a human being.
We continually shove this in closets. No one talks about the genetic testing that presents parents with an opportunity to abort a fetus with birth defects. Yet, it’s practically a routine part of prenatal care. Shall we devise a screen for “the Autism gene” and give parents that option?
Oh, some will say absolutely. Let me check….yep, a parent should have that option because I can’t possibly know how that child’s life will be and it could be a “mercy,” A mercy? No one can predict how a child’s life will be. If you aren’t willing to spin that roulette wheel, then don’t procreate.
I get that Autism is a spectrum. I get that it ranges from severe to mild and has many, many co-morbid conditions. I get that it is harder to be Autistic than it is to be not Autistic. But is that enough to declare a war on Autism and Autistic? Is that enough to encourage eugenics?
Are you uncomfortable yet? You should be.