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January 2011



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Brian Field

I want to fix my child with autism, make him normal like all the others kids. There isn’t a parent out there with such a child that hasn’t – at least for a fleeting moment – had such a thought. Those adults with autism, even those who may be non-verbal, often bristle at the notion of “fixing” or “curing” autism; after all, in removing autism from their beings, they would cease to be the person who they are – different, but no less valuable or important that anyone else.

What about those people suffering from sinistralism? Throughout history, across the world, those with sinistralism were thought improper in society, wrong, even evil – thus, the term being taken from the Latin word sinestra today used as the root for “sinister.” In many cultures those with sinistralism were forced to adopt mainstream practices, or hide their so-called affliction, when all this condition really stems from is a neurological predilection. Sinistralism, by the way, just means you’re left-handed.

And not so dissimilarly, autism spectrum disorders nowadays are looked upon just as that – disorders, to be fixed and cured – when we might well reconsider them as just another shade of neurological diversity. And like those left-handed members of the population, who is to say that those with autism should be forced to adapt to the mainstream conceits of society when tools and means can be developed for such individuals to facilitate operating in the world.

To continue the parallel, it is our society that defines and dictates the qualitative worth of the minority. Just as the peoples of the Andes consider that left-handers possess special spiritual abilities, including magic and healing, so too might our society better value those individuals with autism for non-typical or non-linear thinking, intense focus on problem solving, inspiration, for example, regardless of outward behaviors that seem odd to the majority.

Read in Full:  http://www.examiner.com/autism-in-national/the-cure-for-autism-mainly-understanding

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