Showing posts with label autism. Show all posts
Showing posts with label autism. Show all posts

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Kerri Rivera Still Peddling Industrial Bleach 'Autism Cure'

Kerri Rivera mixing up some MMS (e.g. poison) to give to autistic kids. (source)
Whenever I think of Kerri Rivera giving sodium chlorite (textile bleach) -- aka MMS, aka Miracle (you're not in jail) Mineral Solution -- to little autistic kids and babies, I feel nauseous and angry.

Firstly, people of Chicago! I hope you feel angry this weekend!
Kerri Rivera, who promotes the use of the bleaching agent chlorine dioxide orally, topically and by enema, is speaking on May 23, 2015 from 3-4 PM at the Autism One conference outside of Chicago at the Loews Chicago O'Hare Hotel. If you would like to join the protest, please message me or comment here. More details to follow regarding time and exact location.
This protest is being set up by Mommy, PhD, read a post about hostility towards scientists over at Skepchick.

Need some motivation? Watch this report.

Rivera is actually from Chicago, but she moved down to Mexico to continue her treatment of autism. The treatment itself comes from Jim Humble, who appears to be a lunatic.
Humble, who quit the Church of Scientology to form the Genesis II Church of Health & Healing, claims in online videos to be a billion-year-old god from the Andromeda galaxy.

He promotes the solution as a miracle cure for cancer, AIDS, malaria, and possibly Ebola – but he also claims he can heal by touch.
But Rivera has distanced herself from Humble and claims the sodium chlorite solution cured her son of autism when he was three.
Rivera — who describes herself as a biomedical consultant and certified homeopath — claims that autism is caused by yeast, parasites, viruses, and vaccines that can be flushed from the body through strict dietary guidelines and bleach enemas.
I don't know what else to say about this. There is ZERO evidence this actually works.
“We don’t have a single cause of autism that is linked to a virus or a type of germ or parasite,” said Dr. Karan Radwan, of the University of Chicago. “I feel terrified about a procedure like this which could harm many kids.”
Can someone please think of the children? This is child abuse.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Parents Poisoning Their Autistic Kids By Putting Bleach Up Their Butts

What the hell is wrong with people?

First, I started posting about Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS), which involves forcing your autistic kid to drink 28% sodium chlorite (textile bleach), which burns out their intestinal tracts! Luckily, governments including Canada have begun cracking down and shutting down MMS resellers.

Then, I posted about fecal transplants to try treating autism! This is when you take one person's feces -- say your own -- and stick it into, say, an icing gun. You then stick it up your poor child's rear and inject your bacteria laden waste products into them.

Astoundingly, parents are not ending up in jail for either of these things!

Now, as a cruel and unusual twist, parents have begun to inject MMS solution up the butts of their children.

This is so depressing, that I suggest you at least get a little snark and humour with the information. Go check out this article on Wonkette. Included is information about an MMS reseller in the US who's about to stand trial for selling poison in a bottle for children. He's got a GoFundMe page that's already raised over $120,000 for his defence. Isn't that grand?

Feeling depressed? Here's a bit of uplifting snark from the Wonkette article you need to read.
Has your child ever been diagnosed with autism? Have you ever had the inkling that the key to “fixing” your kiddie’s inborn neurological wiring was to bathe him in bleach, feed him bleach, or shoot bleach up his butt? Of course not, because you are not a FUCKING MANIAC. But not all parents are so enlightened as you, dear reader.
People who do this need to have their children taken away from them.  Another fantastic, yet graphic and depressing, resource to know more about this horrendous torture is Stop Bleaching Me (MMS/CD Awareness Ireland).

Correction: Originally I had put sodium chloride (salt!), instead of sodium chlorite.

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Health Canada Shuts Down Another 'Bleach Cure' Vendor

Portion of image from OxyChem's Sodium Chlorite Handbook (p.6) technical information guide for the compound.
I first wrote about the horrors of Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS) back in 2013, when Kerri Rivera was actually recommending that parents of autistic babies pour the 28%(!) Sodium Chlorite solution into their babies' bottles! It literally burned out children's digestive tracts.

Happily, Health Canada cracked down on this dangerous scam last October. At that time, they shut down one of the local suppliers by seizing stock and equipment.

Most recently, on March 25th, another MMS vendor in Burin, Newfoundland, was shut down.
Health Canada is reminding Canadians that consuming a product sold as "Miracle Mineral Solution" (MMS) may pose serious health risks, following a Health Canada seizure of an MMS product from a vendor in Burin, Newfoundland on March 25, 2015.
Health Canada reminds us that if anyone knows of MMS products being sold anywhere in the country, they should report it by calling 1-800-267-9675.

They also provide a postal address, but why on earth would you want to do that if you know people are giving their kids bleach to drink? If you're concerned about anonymity use a payphone or Google Phone.

via Veronica Abbass

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Anti-Evolution, Climate Change Denying, Anti-Vax MP Escapes The Circling Trolls!

Go ahead! Make me smile!
Fantastic news! Remember back when I was complaining about Federal Conservative (duh!) MP James Lunney coming out as pro-creationism, anti-evolution, climate change denying, vaccines-cause-Autism?

Well, back then I was happy that he wouldn't be running for re-election in 2015. That makes me smile, but what really makes me smile is that Lunney just left the Conservative party altogether and is going to set himself up as a party of one! Yes, he's left the Conservatives and is now an independent... a lone defender of the faith... the only hope we have! So it's like we're getting the relief of knowing he's not running again with all the goodness of whatever astounding speeches in favor of religious freedom he's bound to share with us all!

Here's the full text of his goodbye letter from his website. I'll jump in every so often with my own comments. I sure hope we get to do more of this before the end of his term!
Leaders of the faith community were in Ottawa on March 25th to express their alarm at increasing and unprecedented attempts to stifle freedom of religion, conscience and expression in Canada ( They identify deliberate attempts to suppress a Christian world-view from professional and economic opportunity in law, medicine, and academia. I share these concerns. I believe the same is true in the realm of politics at senior levels.
This would be religious faith leaders -- mostly doctors and lawyers -- complaining that their religious freedom is under attack in Canada. Go read my response and Hemant Mehta's response!
In the past month a few words exchanged on social media, words like: science, managing assumptions and theory or fact related to (macro) evolution. My remarks were inflated by media, blended with other unrelated but alleged heretical statements and became a top story on national media creating a firestorm of criticism and condemnation.  Since two other politicians in Ontario and Alberta were targeted during the same period, it is clear that any politician or candidate of faith is going to be subjected to the same public scrutiny in coming elections.
Here he would be referring to the Internet shitstorm that ensued after he called evolution just a theory and gave us all a good lecture on how science works -- apparently all the scientists are getting this crucial point wrong and Lunney merely wanted to set the record straight. So what did people do? They made fun of him! That's so mean, people!

Lunney continues.
In a society normally proud of embracing difference, the role of the media and partisan politics in inciting social bigotry and intolerance should be questioned. Such ignorance and bigotry cloaked in defence of science is as repugnant as bigotry of any other origin.  It is based in a false construct from another century and is a flagrant violation of a society that is multicultural, multi-racial and multi faith and strives to be accepting of differences.
Why can't we just accept that things like reality and facts and science -- e.g. the evolution of species -- change depending on the race, faith or culture of... well... James Lunney? Yeah, I'm a little confused by this. Lunney is a politician in a position of power and his opinions and positions about the nature of reality should be up for open debate and ridicule. You'd think he could take a little criticism.

Again though, why can't scientists and their scientific reality with data and experiment be respectful of religious belief? Why not?!? You meanies!
Today I am announcing that I have asked the speaker to assign me a seat as an independent MP. I will seek an opportunity to address the House in defence of my beliefs and the concerns of my faith community.
I cannot wait for this defence.
I am withdrawing from the CPC caucus voluntarily; the decision is entirely my own. Given the circling trolls, I do not intend to entangle the most multi-racial, multicultural and multi-faith caucus in parliamentary history in my decision to defend my beliefs.
Circling trolls? Is he talking about folks like me or people within the Conservative party who are trying to tell him he's too far out there for even their caucus? I'm also uncertain what he means when he says he doesn't wish to entangle the most diverse caucus in parliamentary history. Does he actually mean the NDP, because the Conservatives totally fail there -- well, as does the entire parliament.
I have no intentions of betraying my promise to my constituents and will continue to vote alongside my colleagues in the Conservative caucus.

Freedom of Religion is foundational to democracy; if we don’t get that right, it always leads to persecution.
How about this. Human rights, which include the right to a religion or no religion at all, are the foundation of a democracy. Freedom of and freedom from religion is one dimension of the idea that all humans should have basic rights -- but it's not the sole, most important source. Look up the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Looking forward to more from James Lunney.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

Rex Murphy Does Good Thing! Clobbers Jenny McCarthy & Anti-Vax!

Jenny McCarthy

Before Rex Murphy ranted about those whiney atheists, I didn't much care for him. After that, I settled on disliking him. Well, now he's made a very worthy rant against anti-vaxxer Jenny McCarthy (Jenny McCarthy Body Count) and anti-vaxxers in general. 

As the father of an autistic child and the husband of an autistic woman, I have a special black pit in my heart reserved for McCarthy, so Rex has gotten himself out of the doghouse with me. He's living -- assuming he is still actually physically alive -- in the back porch now.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Health Canada cracks down on 'Bleach Cure' for Autism

Portion of image from OxyChem's Sodium Chlorite Handbook (p.6) technical information guide for the compound.
One of the most horrendous and despicable things I've covered is Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS), which is a completely unproven and harmful quack therapy used to treat children with autism. It involves giving 28% sodium chlorite -- not technically bleach but a bleaching chemical -- in distilled water to your kid to drink for weeks, months, years.

And at 28%(!), giving this to your kid is child abuse, full stop.
When citric acid or other food acid is used to "activate" MMS as described in its instructions, the mixture produces an aqueous solution containing chlorine dioxide, a toxin and a potent oxidizing agent used in the treatment of water and in bleaching. The United States Environmental Protection Agency has set a maximum level of 0.8 mg/L for chlorine dioxide in drinking water. Naren Gunja, director of the New South Wales Poisons Information Centre, has stated that using the product is "a bit like drinking concentrated bleach" and that users have displayed symptoms consistent with corrosive injuries, such as vomiting, stomach pains, and diarrhea.
Canada has finally issued a warning about MMS and has begun seizing the product. About freaking time.
Health Canada says anyone who bought a product called Miracle Mineral Solution should stop using it immediately.

The agency says the unauthorized product, sold over the Internet as a treatment for serious diseases such as cancer, poses serious health risks if ingested.
Here's the official release on the agency's webpage.
Health Canada is warning Canadians of the serious risks to health associated with use of the unauthorized drug product Miracle Mineral Solution (MMS), which was sold as a treatment for serious diseases such as cancer through the website MMS contains sodium chlorite, which is a chemical used mainly as a textile bleaching agent and disinfectant and may pose serious risks to health if ingested. An alternate format of MMS, labelled as CDS, is also available for sale on the website and would pose a similar risk.
They specify two products: MMS (28% sodium chlorite and 50% citric acid) and CDS (chlorine dioxide 8000 ppm). The release goes on to specify that Health Canada has never approved the seller,, to sell this stuff.
No drug products containing sodium chlorite have been approved by Health Canada for consumption by humans. Sodium chlorite is authorized in Canada for use as a germicide by veterinarians and as a hard surface disinfectant. Sodium chlorite is commonly used for bleaching textiles, pulp and paper, as well as in the generation of disinfectant for water treatment.
Never buy medicine from a .BIZ domain for you kids!

So now people who insist on feeding this poison to their kids need to be charged with abuse.

Health Canada also advised anyone who did drink this stuff to see a doctor, because it's POISON. They also more or less shut the business down by seizing their stock and production equipment.
Following an inspection of the business premises, Health Canada seized bottles of MMS, packaging, labelling and raw materials used to produce MMS. Health Canada will continue to monitor this company.
I'm sure conspiracy theorists and anti-big-pharma will have a field day with this one. Let them have their fun -- at least this crap is off the market.

(Parts of this post have been expanded since original posting.)

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Mother Who Tried To Murder Her Autistic Daughter Sentenced To Minimum 10 Years

Kelli Stapleton at her sentencing hearing on Wednesday. (source)
Remember that blogger mom who tried to kill her autistic daughter, Kelli Stapleton? She even went so far as starting up a fundraiser to raise money for her legal defense, and plenty of people donated out of sympathy for her -- because, I suppose, killing your children is totally excusable if they're disabled. Her blog is even called The Status Woe.

Well, good news! She's been found guilty and has been sentenced to a hefty time in jail.
A judge Wednesday sentenced the mother of an autistic Michigan teenager to 10 to 22 years in prison in the defendant described as a failed murder-suicide attempt brought on by despair, after years of violent attacks by the child and failure to find affordable and effective treatment.
I hope she, along with other parents, will learn the lesson that having an autistic child is no excuse to kill them! Please, if this crosses anyone's mind, call child services and tell them. Call the police. Call the newspaper. Do whatever it takes, but do not kill your child. I know it sounds heartless, but if you kill yourself, do not kill your child too.
Kelli Rai Stapleton, 46, pleaded guilty last month to first-degree child abuse in a bargain with prosecutors who dismissed an attempted murder charge. She admitted driving her daughter Isabelle to an isolated spot in rural Benzie County, giving her a sleep-inducing drug and placing two charcoal-burning grills inside their van.
Her 15 yr old daughter was in a coma for days, but she's awake and still alive now.
Stapleton wrote in the summer of 2013 that her daughter, nicknamed Issy, had gone through an intense program for severely autistic children near Kalamazoo. But Stapleton said she was "suffering from a severe case of battle fatigue" after the insurance company stopped paying for the treatment and local school officials changed Issy's education plan.

She later told authorities she had concluded the best solution would be if she and her daughter "went to heaven."
Ah, religion. Are murder and suicide not rather severe sins in Christianity? I mean, her daughter would likely pass right on through the gates... but mom?
Ari Ne'eman, president of the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network, argued previously for sentencing Stapleton "the same way a mother of a non-disabled child would be sentenced for a comparable crime" and said lenient treatment would encourage copycat crimes.
Agreed. Murder is illegal and carries certain penalties in the penal system. If we start going easy on people because their children are autistic then we are effectively declaring that autistics are less than human.

Listen, I'm all for more safeguards and social services put into place to help parents deal with challenging situations arising from their autistic children. This involves both help for the children and the parents. However, the final responsibility for caring for -- not killing! -- children rests with the parents, always. If they are unable to cope then the responsible thing to do is to surrender the children to relatives or the state, not kill them.

Friday, 3 October 2014

Authentically Autistic!

My wife, who blogs over at One Quarter Mama and Solo Woman Traveler, just got her first article published over at Huffington Post!

Authentically Autistic -- Like Mother, Like Son
Watching him develop brought back memories of my own childhood, and I started to see a lot of similarities. I also seemed to have much more of a sense of what he was going through than others did, beyond regular "mom intuition." I started to read writings by autistic adult females and started to see a lot of myself in them. Finally, about a year and a half after my son was diagnosed with ASD and SPD, I received the same diagnosis. As my son would say, "We're both the same!"
Go check it out!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Richard Dawkins: It's Immoral To Bring A Down's Syndrome Child Into The World

Richard Dawkins (source)
I know I'm going to catch flack for this from all sides, but Richard Dawkins' latest tweets about terminating pregnancies when the tests come back positive for Down's Syndrome really struck a nerve with me. I usually stay out of this stuff but I can't stay quiet about this one. I'm sure you've all seen this tweet.
Before I go any further, I'd like to make a full disclosure. I'm the father of an autistic child and the husband of an autistic woman. Even though I have no personal experience parenting children with Down's Syndrome, I still have strong feelings about disability and ableism.

I've read Dawkins' apology, Abortion & Down Syndrome: An Apology for Letting Slip the Dogs of Twitterwar and at some level I can agree with him. Although, even the title irritates me because it screams non-pology to me -- it implies he's not apologizing for anything other than causing a ruckus.

But then Twitter is no place for implications or nuance. It's definitely no place for expressing opinions about difficult and complex issues. Dawkins, as an accomplished author really should be aware of this and it leads me to think that he really doesn't understand that this is a complicated and highly emotional subject.
That’s what I would have said, if a woman were to ask my advice. As you might notice, it takes a lot more than 140 characters! I condensed it down to a tweet, and the result was understandably seen in some quarters as rather heartless and callous: “Abort it and try again. It would be immoral to bring it into the world if you have the choice.” Of course I regret using abbreviated phraseology which caused so much upset. I never wanted to “cry havoc”!
That's an understatement! Here's what Dawkins would have said if he had more than 140 characters -- like in a blog or even a book!
“Obviously the choice would be yours. For what it’s worth, my own choice would be to abort the Down fetus and, assuming you want a baby at all, try again. Given a free choice of having an early abortion or deliberately bringing a Down child into the world, I think the moral and sensible choice would be to abort. And, indeed, that is what the great majority of women, in America and especially in Europe, actually do.  I personally would go further and say that, if your morality is based, as mine is, on a desire to increase the sum of happiness and reduce suffering, the decision to deliberately give birth to a Down baby, when you have the choice to abort it early in the pregnancy, might actually be immoral from the point of view of the child’s own welfare. I agree that that personal opinion is contentious and needs to be argued further, possibly to be withdrawn. In any case, you would probably be condemning yourself as a mother (or yourselves as a couple) to a lifetime of caring for an adult with the needs of a child. Your child would probably have a short life expectancy but, if she did outlive you, you would have the worry of who would care for her after you are gone. No wonder most people choose abortion when offered the choice. Having said that, the choice would be entirely yours and I would never dream of trying to impose my views on you or anyone else.”
I'll agree that most of it was in the delivery. Dawkins, who is falsely portrayed regularly by religious media as some kind of Pope of the Atheists speaking for countless mindless followers, should be aware that tweets like the above without proper qualification that 'for what it's worth, my own choice would be to abort' is absolutely essential for it not to come off as some sort moral decree from on high. This isn't Dawkins' fault, it's just a sad reality.

It is also true that the majority of people do, indeed, abort early to avoid having a child with Down's Syndrome. In fact, my wife and I were pressured quite a bit to get amniocentesis. The doctor informed us it would be so we could screen against Down's. However, we both had previously decided we would not abort to prevent against Down's. We did not see this as immoral like Dawkins does.
I personally would go further and say that, if your morality is based, as mine is, on a desire to increase the sum of happiness and reduce suffering, the decision to deliberately give birth to a Down baby, when you have the choice to abort it early in the pregnancy, might actually be immoral from the point of view of the child’s own welfare. 
I think this contains the very false assumption that children with Down's Syndrome automatically reduce the sum of happiness. Who's happiness? What sort of happiness?

Although more challenging -- and perhaps fraught with some more suffering -- parents of Downs syndrome children do find themselves happy. In the end, all of parenting contains sacrifice and suffering! I've read several articles by parents of Down children who simply do not understand what Dawkins is talking about and are not the slightest bit impressed with his judgement that their children do not contribute to human happiness. What is Dawkins saying here?

The children themselves are often happy as well. They are kids, after all. They are not in constant pain. As far as I can tell, they are not suffering.
In any case, you would probably be condemning yourself as a mother (or yourselves as a couple) to a lifetime of caring for an adult with the needs of a child. Your child would probably have a short life expectancy but, if she did outlive you, you would have the worry of who would care for her after you are gone. No wonder most people choose abortion when offered the choice. 
Yes. I think these are all important things to consider for couples. I agree that it is wrong to force this upon anyone and to do so would likely breed terrible resentment and frustration that would be counterproductive to both parent and child. I've seen this before with some parents of autistic children who have left some horrible comments on my blog about how they cannot stand their children. These are people who -- if the technology existed -- probably should have opted to abort early to reduce suffering.

That said, we know what Dawkins would do -- and I'm fine with that. And we know what other parents would do -- also fine. The problem was with Dawkins' delivery and his automatic assumption that Down Syndrome is a net negative -- a non-contribution to society. It sort of implies he means a drag on society. I'll go no further. I don't want to drag this downhill, but you can probably tell where this path can lead in the minds of some of his readers.
I don't know what he bases this on. Is it his own personal experience or something more? It is this absolute judgement which disturbs me the most. He is here comparing one broad spectrum of functionality with another and calling one a enhancement and another a negative. 

It's undeniable that there are autistic people with a complex of delays and disabilities which can place them far below the functionality of many Down's people -- as far as society judges them and as far as their abilities to be self-sufficient and autonomous. I've also read articles about the great ability to carry on friendships and to express love possessed by many children with Downs Syndrome which could be judged by broader society as excelling the social skills of some autistic people. This is not black and white, and I think this tweet sums up Dawkins' seeming inabilities to see the greys and at least acknowledge them.

And yes, I have concerns about how my son will get on in the world and so does another father of an autistic child I've spoken with. There's just one thing. This is thinking very very far into a future we know nothing about. The quality of care depends very much on the society we will live in and our own circumstances.  The future is unknown. Anything can happen.

I have no ill-will towards Dawkins. I think he's done a lot of excellent work and it was his book The God Delusion that finally gave me the resolve to call myself an atheist. Like me, he is a human being with ideas and feelings and a father. On this topic, we do not see eye-to-eye and that's okay -- he doesn't speak for all atheists all the time.

Monday, 26 May 2014

A Young Autistic's Journey out of Institutionalized Education and Socialization toward Clarity

This is a guest post by author Michael Scott Monje, Jr. who blogs over at Shaping Clay. Michael is running an Indiegogo campaign to write about their own experience being an Autistic atheist through the imagery of an upcoming fictional web serial. 

Their story is a fascinating one and I've asked them to share a little of it here and tell us about their upcoming project, Imaginary Friends, and how we can directly help give time to work on it.

I have been an atheist for much, much longer than I have known myself to be autistic. In some ways, it feels like a stronger, better-mapped part of my identity. In other ways, though, it hardly feels like a part of myself any more. From the time that I first read the Gospel of John on my way through the New Testament, I have known, deep in the part of myself that speaks moral truths in a physical language, that the stories are stories, and not histories. Years before I had a way to explain how I knew this, I felt it as I read my way through fantastic story after fantastic story about miraculous events and world-shaking prophecies.

My lack of belief did not prevent me from cheerfully participating in the Catholic church at first. As a child, it seemed natural to me that I would know something is make-believe and still act as if I was dedicated to the belief that it was otherwise. It felt like a healthy suspension of something that I was asked to wear like a cloak over my natural attitude all week, and I imagined that this playing time (mixed with the discussions about morality that ran through each week's sessions) was a healthy and natural thing that everyone did to stay relaxed.

It wasn't until middle school, or rather, until the Sunday night youth groups for teenagers, that I realized how different my theory of religious participation was from everyone else's. It was a rough and rude awakening—I had taken it so for granted that everyone else understood our religious practice the same way I did, and as I realized through the social events and the classes that they did not, I became very disillusioned with the character of my community. It ceased to be a comfortable place for me, and instead it became a place where people I did not understand reassured one another that things that could not possibly be true were, in fact, true. When you add to that the kind of rude and confrontational social atmosphere that is almost like air to adolescents as they first start to negotiate adult socialization, the youth group was a terrifying place for a young Autistic to find themself in.

Years later, after my diagnosis, I started to reflect on the social structures within the church and on the way that they shaped my level of comfort with the practice of the faith. It's not that I think being Autistic necessarily made me more or less likely to be an atheist. On the contrary, I'm pretty sure it had nothing to do with it, since I know many, many Autistic people who practice a faith tradition. I do think, though, that the combination of my communication difficulties and my divergent social development produced situations where I was not participating in the same conversations that other people thought I was participating in, and the resolution of these miscommunications—both negatively and positively—definitely had an effect on my ability to participate in these communities.

I also think that my divergent intellectual development, along with my fascination with belief and myth as structures, strongly influenced my orientation toward my faith community. Given some slight differences in the level of guidance and the exact order of my literary development, I might easily have turned into a practitioner of the “of course it's not literal, it's a moral metaphor” kind of faith tradition that many of my friends practice. That did not happen, though, and partially, I do think it was early exposure to a wide and diverse range of myths and traditions that primed me to see a recursive pattern of fulfilling cultural needs where other people saw a truth that they could live by.

In my new web serial, Imaginary Friends, I will be telling a story that is very close to my own developmental pattern. The goal of the project is to use fiction to do what I have always understood it is supposed to be used to do: To create an imaginary allegory for a specific cultural understanding or event. In this case, Clay Dillon, an Autistic boy around the age of 8 or 9, is thrust into a nexus of early literacy, religious instruction, and institutionalized education and socialization (American public schooling), and the narrative focuses on how the intersection of these factors, along with many others (including class, ethnicity, and family structure) shape his emerging sense of himself and his relationship to his community.

The first chapter of this story will go live on June 6, and it will run for roughly 50 chapters. I have an Indiegogo page up (see below), and I'm offering perks that include my other books and some authorial services. If we make the funding goal, I will be able to run 2-3 chapters per week. If we fall short, the project will still go forward and the perks that are purchased will still be honored, but I will only be able to afford to run 1 chapter per week.

You can check out my campaign here. You can also find my blog, Shaping Clay, here.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Toni Braxton: My Son's Autism Is God's Payback For My Previous Abortion

Toni Braxton in Romania, 2012 (source)

Ever since it was posted on this blog's Facebook Page today, I've been dying to comment on this outrageous story.

Toni Braxton laments son’s autism as ‘God’s payback’ for abortion

It's all in her upcoming memoir, Unbreak My Heart.

Back in 2001, Braxton got pregnant but was taking Accutane for her acne, which has been known to cause birth defects. She also decided it wasn't the right time to have a baby. Hence, she had an abortion. I don't see a problem with this, but Braxton was raised in an uber cult-like Christian family and so apparently still feels immense guilt for this.
Braxton notes in her book that she grew up in a very strict household where she was forced to fast for two weeks during Lent, could not wear pants, and often had to neglect her homework in order to memorize Scripture. At the church where she and her family attended, students were forced to memorize at least 25 Scriptures per week.
What paints her God as a horrendous monster is that she honestly wonders whether her parents' divorce was caused by her abortion. Presumably God inflicted great pain and suffering onto her parents because of something she did.
She also believed that God may be punishing her with a diagnosis of lupus and her parents' divorce.
Because he wasn't done yet, apparently this God also decided that her son be autistic. Oh no, sorry, he let him have autism.
‘I have sometimes wondered whether God was punishing me for the abortion I had years ago by allowing my son to have autism. Or by giving me so many health issues’, she writes.
I honestly wonder what this says about her thoughts of autistic people as well. I know autistic children and adults and this kind of talk - of an affliction - can be seen as rather offensive. My own son and wife are both autistic and I do not see them as punishments from some (non-existent) God.

On top of this, jerk-God decided to also give Braxton Lupus. What a dick. And just how many abortions has he let happen recently?

Among women who know they are pregnant, the miscarriage rate is roughly 15-20%. Miscarriage may occur for many reasons, not all of which can be identified. Some of these causes include genetic, uterine, or hormonal abnormalities, reproductive tract infections, and tissue rejection. Miscarriage caused by invasive prenatal diagnosis (chorionic villus sampling (CVS) and amniocentesis) is rare (about 1%).
Not to mention being strangled by their own umbilical cords!

Although she's been through a lot and it's not easy. I notice a common thread in all of these cases; they all point back to Toni Braxton and something she did. This can be either seen as rather self-centered of her or a symptom of way way too much guilt and ownership of a bad situation. This appears to be an unhealthy condition and the cause is a twisted up guilt-ridden religious view that attaches unproven consequences onto unrelated actions. Being ex-Catholic, I think I might get some of it.

I hope Braxton can try to get over this and realize it is not anything she did, but that will require getting over the sort of abuse it looks like she had to endure. I think she owes it to her kids to try.

Oh, and it is infact, even worse than it sounds. In her upcoming memoir, Braxton also mentions that her second son's Autism symptoms just so happened to coincide with the MMR vaccine. If you're going to go off the superstitious conspiracy theory deep end, you may as well go for broke.
"Maybe it's just a coincidence that after my son's first MMR vaccine, I began to notice changes in him," Braxton noted in the book.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Discrimination Against B.C. Autistic Teen

Melanie Bowen (right) and her 15 year old daughter Brooklyn (left) (source)
Being the father of an autistic child, I am likely a little more sensitive to stories like this than average folk. I've posted about mothers who kill their autistic children in the past - and I'm sorry to say it happened again recently in British Columbia. I may write about that story later, but for now I'll concentrate on a case of discrimination against an autistic girl also in British Columbia.

B.C. girl with autism, epilepsy denied student exchange trip to PEI

In a nutshell, she applied for and got accepted into a student exchange program with her school, raised the funds required to go to Prince Edward Island, hosted the PEI students and was all set to go. She did all that was required and even raised the money (!) but apparently that's not good enough. Apparently, someone decided that there is nothing Brooklyn can do to deserve fair treatment.
Melanie Bowen, Brooklyn’s mom, says she signed waivers about her daughter’s mild disabilities back in November and was accepted to go on a trip on May 13.

However, while hosting students from PEI last month, she had a complex partial seizure, which means she gets flushed and appears to be daydreaming. She was walked to the sick room where she rested before heading home with her mom.

Days later her entire trip was cancelled by Bluefield High School on PEI.

“We feel that Brooklyn was not currently able to meet the mandate of the exchange with regards to social interaction with her twin and PEI peers,” a letter from the school stated.
Apparently because of the uber mild seizure (or perhaps any old excuse at all), the host school in PEI decided to cancel her trip for her because they felt 'that Brooklyn was not currently able to meet the mandate of the exchange with regards to social interaction with her twin and PEI peers.' What does this even mean?

You know, I knew someone who was diabetic who once had a reaction to her insulin during art class. She seemed pretty flushed and informed someone his hair was fire and that there was a fish floating in mid-air. Nobody cancelled any of her school-related trips.

And the exchange program, SEVEC, claims to accept those with disabilities. Well, it took awhile for them to even entertain the idea of hosting Brooklyn.
After dozens of emails and phone calls, Bowen claims the school says the only way Brooklyn can participate is if she stays in a hotel room alone along with a teacher next door.
Apparently, the school thinks that this girl is scary, dangerous or infectious, or something. The whole point of the trip is a cultural exchange with youth of her age and their families in a province thousands of miles away and the school suggests house arrest and isolation. 

Thankfully Brooklyn didn't back down. She's strong. She bravely started a Facebook page, Fight Discrimination With Brooklyn, which has received more than 1,200 likes. This triggered an outpouring for support from Prince Edward Islanders - some have offered to host her at their own homes.
“My son graduated from Bluefield High School in PEI. He has autism – albeit mild and high function. He went on two Europe trips with students from Bluefield while there. I may be missing something, but my experience was inclusiveness at Bluefield… we live close to Bluefield and would be more than willing to accept her as a billet,” said Neila Auld.
Still no comment from the school, though. I imagine they must be a little concerned now about all this negative exposure.

The exchange organization, SEVEC, hasn't offered any solutions either. They could work to solve the problem. Nothing so far.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Response to A Reader About Parents Who Kill Their Autistic Children

A long time ago, in September, I wrote about the latest in what seemed to be a rash of mothers killing their autistic kids. I started out by mentioning some of the prior cases and then weighed in rather harshly against mother Marilyn Edge who murdered her son and killed herself.
In this latest case, the mother, Marilyn Edge, believed that vaccines caused her son Jaelen's autism and tried to sue to government.  She lost because her case was based on woo. She then decided to kill her kids and herself, because - you know- that's what's best for everyone.
As I mentioned in my latest post about mothers who kill their kids because they think that's what's best for them, it really strikes me more as them not being able to cope and believing that nobody else should get the chance to try to help their kids. So they take their own lives and the lives of their children on the hypothetical assumption that their kids can never be happy at all, ever in this world.

I'd feel sorry about them if they killed themselves and stopped there. But murdering your kids crosses the line. What bothered me then and bothers me now, is all those who make excuses for the murderous parents - taking care of autistic children is too hard.

Well, I got this comment from Bob on the September post. My commenting system wasn't working and it never came through. So here it is.
You sound smug; I can't help but wonder if you'd still be such a "happy father" if you were beaten and abused every day and knocked unconscious and ultimately hospitalized. All without a whole heck of a lot of support from your spouse.
Of course I wouldn't be a happy father if I were hospitalized by my kid and had a crappy spouse. I think that's a pretty easy question.

Would this give me an excuse to murder my kid? Of course not.

Is this your situation? If so, I feel sorry for you. If I were in your shoes I would be very unhappy. I would try to get help with my own non-violent communication skills and work out ways to attempt to diffuse the situation. I would also try to get help for my (obviously quite grown up) child to see if their anger could be properly regulated and other modes of expression could be worked in.

The closest we came to this was when our child was pre-verbal and was unable to express his anger. This became so frustrating for him that he would kick and hit us. Luckily he was only a toddler and he began to speak a year or so ago and this has diffused the situation greatly. I realize this is not the case with many autistic children and some adults.

If all else fails, I would attempt to get the child put into a home or even try to give him up to the state. Perhaps even child protective services. Also, to me this case you bring up seems to be in a different category than these other cases, where the child was smaller and the mother didn't seem to be doing it in self-defence but rather as a kind of mercy killing (because apparently being autistic could be worse than death).

But in the end, this is your child. You don't kill them and then excuse yourself because they are autistic. These are human beings and they deserve to live.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Mother Kills Her Autistic Son... Again...

So, after this and this, it's gone and happened ... again. Yet another mother has killed her kid and herself, presumably because death is preferable than her having to care for an autistic child.  Or perhaps it's preferable, in today's society, to be a dead autistic child than a living one?

LINK: Mother-son deaths at west-side apartment ruled murder, suicide

Image from a 1960s experiment where they tried to violently yell and slap the autism out of children. (source)
In any event, all it took was a single small indication in the story that the child was autistic and people leaped to the defense of mother April Veraghen, who apparently was of the mind that if she wasn't up to task for parenting the child then nobody else bloody was going to get a chance.

you know what though you didn't her and what she was going through and yes it was wrong for her to kill her son but in her eyes she know he would be better off dead then alive with his family because you don't know how his family could be towards him. and she was only doing what she thought would be better for him.
Posts like this make me wonder whether autistic people are seen as people. Who is this woman to determine by fiat that she can murder her son because, perhaps, she doesn't think he'll do well with family? I'm sorry, but killing your son because you think it would be better for him is just not acceptable. And is death preferable to being autistic?

Severe autism is a RELENTLESS disorder that never ever takes a break. It's easy for you to stand in judgement, consider yourself lucky that you have never been so beaten down by a disorder that has NO sympathy and NO consistent treatment. It is attitudes like yours that are part of the problem.

Look, I know it's not easy. But killing your kid is never an option, even if things are really hard. If you cannot take care of your child then you will need to give them up to relatives, hospice, the state.

More sympathy for mom. And I'm not sure how I would feel if I were her son and she showed up in Heaven. I'd likely ask her why she killed me. I wonder if religious belief factored into this at any point? Did she believe God would forgive her, "fix" her son and they would "live" happily ever after in the after?

All I know that this is very sad ... I don't know April or what silent suffering she was dealing with .... I'm not justifying what happened , but it sounds to me she needed help and never got it .... I will pray to God that he forgives April so her son will have his mom beside him in heaven .....
And then there is a plea to not condemn mom because there are family and friends trying to cope. I can sympathize with this to a degree, but what about friends and family trying to cope with the death of this child?

While we are all busy condemning this mother, we need to realize that the son was not the only one with issues. Her world, in her mind was spinning out of control. It's easy to mention all the alternatives, but did anyone offer them to her? Instead of name calling every one of us should reach out to someone else today and try to make a difference in just one other person's life - you just might be saving it. Let's also remember that there are family and friends trying to cope. If you now them, reach out.
I admire the sentiment and much of the message I agree with wholeheartedly. But this does not excuse the mother's conduct in any way.

Notice how they put themselves into the shoes of the mother and really identify with her. Her mind was spinning out of control. She was dealing with silent suffering. She was beaten down. She was only doing what she thought better for him.

What a martyr to have suffered and died caring for an autistic child. I'm happy that we had a couple of reasonable responses.

What about the child? What do you think he was feeling? Do you not think he knew something was strange that day when mamma told him to take all that medicine?

To everyone trying to give this "mother/monster," ANY sympathy, be ashamed. There is no justification for this crime! I am starting to lose track of the number of murders of disabled people by their caregivers, this is Not a failure of the system, or a lack of resources! This woman is a child murderer, unworthy any sympathy or compassion.

THANK YOU. As a father of an autistic child and a husband of an autistic woman, I'm happy someone else sees the victims as people who deserve to live and who's lives have just as much value as neurotypical people.

Commenter Michelle Skigen wins the prize for quoting a response from an autistic person to this inexcusable inexcusable defense of murder.

There was a post, by an amazing lady, in another thread about this, and I HAD to share her thoughts, because they are totally spot-on to the situation --- Emily writes: See, here's the thing. A lot of us are autistic. We've grown up watching parents and caregivers who murder their autistic and/or otherwise disabled children, adult children, or people they care for kill us *and get away with a slap on the wrist if anything* and listening to people attempt to justify or explain away or sympathize with these murderers. There, I said it. MURDERERS.
It keeps going. I really suggest you visit the page and read the whole thing to get a better understanding that killing off an autistic person is murder -- no matter how hard it is for you personally to deal with them.

Monday, 6 January 2014

5 Ways Parents Abuse Their Autistic Children

Okay, first-off, I need to get one thing off my chest here.

As a blogger, I really cannot stand the formulaic list post that tell you N Ways or N Most or N Best, etc. It brings back horrible memories of those terrible countdown television programmes back when I used to watch it outside the safe confines of Netflix or Crackle.

Okay, so here's an article in Forbes that my wife pointed out to me. Given my utter revulsion at the alternative Autism treatment racket, I cannot help but pass it on. Read the woo and feel sorry for the children.

The 5 Scariest Autism 'Treatments'

This is a really good article that sums these dangerous and abusive treatments up really well. Author, Emily Willingham also provides links to her own scientific demonstrations of just how harmful or insane they are.

I'd quote more from the post but it seems like I'm unable to actually select any text on the page. No matter, I actually manually transcribed this part since so few horrendous treatments still rise up to be surprising to me and this one was one nasty surprise.
2. Chemical castration. Burning off the lining of an autistic child's intestines might seem pretty horrific, but it can pale in comparison to the tragedy that is chemical castration to "treat" autism. I have previously broken down the background of this concept, introduced to the world of autism treatment by the now notorious father-son team of the Geiers. These two, in a 20-year-long run of damage, might now be reaching the end of their particular race. The father has had his medical license stripped in several states. That didn't stop the Geiers père et fils from recently filing a patent for the chemical castration protocol.
How utterly nonsensical and ghastly. Have we fallen back into some kind of eugenic nightmare?

And it hits me at a personal level. Both my son and wife are autistic.

Anyway, go check it out and prepare yourself for the next time you run into someone who's convinced feeding bleach to children or injecting their own feces into their kid's butt is a good idea.

Monday, 25 November 2013

Disgusting Autism Research From The 1960s

You may already know that I am the happy father of a four year old autistic boy- who is simply amazing!

Granted, I started out really scared and a little sad when we first got the diagnosis. Then I would find myself getting down about some of his behaviours at first as well -- like at the poo poo park.

But in the past six months or so, he's changed and I've changed. He's talking now and tells me he's my best friend and that I'm his best friend. He's right! I will cherish this for as long as I can, because I don't know where we'll be at when he's in his teens.

I've come to totally accept him and his stimming. My concern about it was my problem and not his in any way. It's who he is and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Now a couple of days ago, my wife sent me this photo essay about a study done in 1964 where researchers physically and verbally abused little kids. Because they're mentally crippled. How did these people sleep at night?

Screams, Slaps & LoveA surprising, shocking treatment helps far-gone mental cripples

Okay, where the hell do I start with this? It's thoroughly disturbing and depressing - not at all because the children are autistic but because of the horrendous treatment of the children!

By helping they mean yelling and beating them until they must do something - anything - to defend themselves. Children who cannot defend themselves.
They have taken on three boys and a girl with a special form of schizophrenia called autism — utterly withdrawn children whose minds are sealed against all human contact and whose uncontrolled madness had turned their homes into hells (p. 96). And, by alternating methods of shocking roughness with persistent and loving attention, the researchers have broken through the first barriers. 
Roughness and persistent and loving attention -- like cycles of abuse.

Researcher slapping this kid in the face. (source)
The process involved yelling, slapping and electrocution to get them to stop their stimming habits -- for the sake of their parents and everyone around them.
At one point Pamela had been making progress, learning to read a little, speak a few words sensibly. But then she came to a blank wall, drifting off during lessons into her wild expressions and gesticulations. Scoldings and stern shakings did nothing. Like many autistic children, Pamela simply did not have enough anxiety to be frightened.
What the hell? They apparently need to be scared out of their minds to learn. So after being shaken and scolded, they decide to electrocute her.
To give her something to be anxious about, she was taken to the shock room, where the floor is laced with metallic strips. Two electrodes were put on her bare back, and her shoes removed.
After being scolded, shaken and electrocuted, she attempts to hug the researcher with instinctive cunning. Perhaps get a little mercy out of him. The researcher denies her and insists she continue with her lessons. I wonder if he ever considered why she didn't want to do the lessons, that she would be punished if she failed or perhaps she may not believe she is capable.

Then, just like an abusive parent, the researchers would come in and offer affection and cuddling as if there was nothing wrong with the previous abuse.
Even more than punishment, patience and tenderness are lavished on the children by the staff. Every hour of lesson time has a 10-minute break for affectionate play. The key to the program is a painstaking system of rewarding the children —first with food and later with approval — whenever they do something correctly. These four were picked because they are avid eaters to whom food is very important. In the first months they got no regular meals. Spoonfuls of food were doled out only for right answers.
Go read it. You need to read it to believe it.

Original caption: 'Like a fragile Buddha, Chuck sits endlessly contemplating nothing while mutely rocking
back and forth.'
Or he could be stimming to try to deal with the fact he's being tortured. (source)

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Mother Who Tries To Kill Her Daughter Starts Fundraiser For Legal Defence Fund

Quinn, a ~18 month old autistic boy, obsessively
stacking cans. (source)
So a couple of days ago I posted my perspective, as the father of an autistic child, about mothers who try to kill their autistic children and get sympathy from people.

It seems as if the most heinous and unforgivable crime towards neurotypical children becomes an object of sympathy and pity for the mother if the child is autistic.

Well now blogger Kelli Stapleton, who tried to kill herself and her autistic daughter by asphyxiation in her van, has set up a fundraiser online to collect money for her legal defence fund.

Kelli Stapleton supporters help legal defense in alleged poisoning of autistic daughter, herself

The Friends of Kelli Stapleton need $25,000. They've made $2,600 so far. It seems that people are not lining up with their credit cards.
Our friend Kelli Stapleton is currently being held in jail without bond, awaiting further action regarding a tragic incident with her autistic daughter. We believe in Kelli. We believe in her right to a fair and just trial with proper legal counsel and experts in these extreme circumstances. 
I wonder why she's being held without bond? It could be because this tragic incident with her autistic daughter was actually her trying to kill her own child. I'm pretty sure is a no-no no matter how fed up you are with her behaviour.  We're not living in Biblical times anymore here.

I'll admit that I'm Canadian and so do not understand how lawyer fees work in America (or here really). But doesn't one get a lawyer with or without $25,000?

Anyway, the updates page on the fundraiser has this to say about the role autism had.
Autism plays a role in this situation but this issue goes beyond autism, it includes any parent who is being abused by their child. Feeling hopeless and responsible for a child who is harming you is overwhelming. Kelli needs help to ensure she is able to give that message. Legal fees and attorney's are expensive and we realize the cost will most likely quadruple but we wanted to set a goal that is realistic and attainable in a short time. 
The fact is, Kelli could not care for her daughter and her attempt to kill her is a clear sign that her daughter would be safer outside her house in alternate care.

I agree, Kelli needs to be psychologically assessed and provided treatment - as with any other mother who tries to murder her daughter, autistic or not. Then, like any other mother in this situation, regardless of the behaviour of her 14 year old daughter, Kelli needs to go before a judge and answer for her behaviour. Perhaps she can plead insanity or temporary insanity.  Again, autism is not the problem here.

If your child hits and abuses you and you cannot cope with this, you need to seek help or even give the child you. Killing the child is never an option.

Comments to the story are encouraging.

Yes, Paula, I agree completely.

Monday, 16 September 2013

Another mother tries to kill her autistic children, and succeeds.

Autism-stacking-cans 2nd edit" src="//
Subject: Quinn, an ~18 month old autistic child, 
obsessively stacking cans (source).
Some of you may know that I am the happy father of a wonderful autistic four year old. So occasionally, I read a story about Autism that probably has very little to do with atheism that still ticks me off just enough to write about it here.

So first we have Satpal Kaur-Singh who made her autistic son drink bleach and die in the UK back in 2010. She gave him a lethal drink and then she tried to kill herself. All of this was because social workers advised her they would be taking her son away as they didn't see her as in a fit enough state to care for him.

Chicago area Dorothy Spourdalakis and Jolanta Agata Skrodzka were involved in the killing of Dorothy's 14-year old autistic son, Alex. They apparently grew frustrated with the lack of resources available to help care for the boy. Department of Children and Family Services offered her help, but apparently she declined.

The fraudster doctor Andrew Wakefield even made Youtube video to appeal for aid for the child.  Alex had severe gastrointestinal problems that would send him into violent rages.

There has been some speculation that MMS (bleach drinking), an alternative and unproven woo-based autism cure, might have contributed to this problem - but this is just speculation and rumour. I wouldn't be surprised though if she were in cahoots with the anti-vaccination and alternative treatment crowd.

Now just this month, Kelli Stapleton, a blogger who wrote the depressing sounding Status Woe, decided to end her life and the life of her autistic daughter, Issy. She sat herself and her daughter in her mini van and burned coals inside with the windows rolled up.

They both ended up in the hospital in bad shape after the father found them. He had received a messed up call from her.

It seems as if Kelli's concern was they would not have enough money to continue therapy for her daughter (private insurance). So rather than deal with her own disappointment that her daughter may have to take a break from therapy - instead of just loving her and treating her the best she could on her own! - she tried to kill her. Thanks, mom.

And now it's happened again.

Mother 'killed autistic son, 13, and daughter, 10, and left them in a hotel before trying to kill herself by crashing propane-filled car'

Okay, there is a real problem here. What's with the sudden rash of mothers killing their autistic children?

In this latest case, the mother, Marilyn Edge, believed that vaccines caused her son Jaelen's autism and tried to sue to government.  She lost because her case was based on woo. She then decided to kill her kids and herself, because - you know- that's what's best for everyone.

This is of course insane. But what get's me is the comments on the news coverage of this event. At the blog Justice For All, blogger Alyssa points to several news releases. All but one do not mention that the son is autistic.

Anyone who peruses the comments will notice a marked difference here. On the articles that do not mention Jaelen's autism all the comments condemned the mother with no excuses. They were actually rather ruthless with the mother and the more compassionate ones simply could not fathom why she would kill her own children. However, on the article that mentioned her son's autism, many people started making excuses for the mothers actions. Who could blame her, right? Her son was autistic - there's an excuse for filicide. They wouldn't condone such a thing but...
Autism can be deadly and often is. Autism is not the need for awareness. a picnic in the park, an illness we must accept. I am dead right when I tell you that autism is the worst man made disease in the history of medicine. Maurine Meleck SC grandmother to 1 in 31(vaccine injured)
Yes, deadly when mom decides to kill you. What does this have to do with autism awareness, exactly? How about don't kill your kids awareness.  Or blame vaccines - a scientifically unproven link. Yes, they are the guilty ones here.
Unless you walk in the shoes of a parent with a child with Autism, you will never know the desperation and depression these parents feel. She clearly tried to take her own life and took her kids' lives because she reached a dead end. Tragic!
You do not kill your kids when you reach a dead end. This is not an excuse but it seems to be echoed on the article where it is stated the son has autism.
Terrible story. Autism is so taxing on married couples, it must be awful when you are single and financially hurting. What lengths people will go to is astounding.
Poor mom. No, wait, poor kids! What are you talking about?!?
Where was the father to help her out. Especially with a disabled child...... Oh wait ....
Who cares where dad was. She killed her kids. But she had to take care of an autistic child, so I guess that explains that.
Autism is caused by Aspartame.
Why is it all of a sudden about Autism when it's mentioned but none of this nonsense came up in the other articles? Really?
Maybe she lacked the resources to help her children - care can cost in the hundreds of thousand even millions for an autistic child over their lifetime. I'm not condoning what she did but simply trying tonunderstand what lead to her desperate actions. I'm sure that they will paint it as her ridding herself of the burden of these kids which may or not be true. My heart goes out to the kids.
As the sister of a person with severe mental disability, I know it is all too common for caretakers of the handicapped, and particularly severely autistic children, to "snap" like this. Being a parent to someone who is severely autistic can be a miserable, thankless job...these kids are iincapable of any interaction -no smiles, no words, no sign of any affection or even recognition. This is in NO WAY an excuse, I don't condone her actions, but I do wish there was support available to parents of these children who feel and essentially are trapped for life. All adoption and foster care officials will tell you that there are no homes waiting for these children, and if entered in the system they will likely end up in truly miserable conditions. Knowing this problem exists, I wish there were better options available, ways to relieve some of the daily, never-ending pressures of being the caregiver to someone so demanding and helpless. It's a terrible tragedy that occurs too often.
Yes, I realize that this is no walk in the park. Autistic children often have special needs that can be a challenge to find resources to meet. But for whom is this a thankless job, exactly? Who lost their cope? Was she doing the kids any favours by killing them or just for herself? Although these children are incapable of interaction and smiles and words, does this give us the excuse to kill them - apparently because it disappoints and upsets us?

Thankfully, there were many good comments from autistic adults who weren't going to take this insanity.
I am an Autistic adult and none of you realize every time someone say "walk in the mother's shoes" or "lack of services caused this" you are verbally stabbing one of us in the heart! Stop, just stop!!!!!
Editor's Update 2013-09-19 7:44am ET: I believe I just caught and replaced all phrases "children with autism" and replaced them with "autistic children". The difference can be subtle to many and I leave it as an exercise to my readers to consider this. Thanks so much to my wife, Kelly, for pointing this out!

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