The racist and eugenicist roots of the term “Autism”

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ASPartOfMe
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22 Nov 2022, 11:05 am

Ever since two historians dug up evidence that Hans Asperger was complicit in the Nazi eugenics program some Autism Justice Warriors especially on ahem twitter have been bullying people who prefer to describe themselves as “Aspergers” or “Aspie”. You must use Autistic they demand because “Aspergers” was a Nazi term, that is why the DSM removed “Aspergers”.

First of all they have the history wrong. The term “Aspergers” was not coined by Hans Asperger. It showed up occasionally in psychology journals as early as the the 1950s but it was Lorna Wing who successfully proposed making it an official diagnosis decades later. It was not removed as an official diagnosis because of Hans Asperger’s nazi complicity, that information was barely known at the time.

Second of all autistic people should be the last people bullying other autistic people. I remember 6 or 7 years ago when you could not read a comment section without a bunch of NT’s coming on and demanding we use the term “person with Autism” because “Autistic” is offensive. As a person with presumably 60 years more experience being Autistic then they did that did not go over well with me. I am not about to do that to others.

And then there is the politically correct term “Autism”.
Reviewing the legacy of racist scientists

Quote:
Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity.

Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”

Bleuler, director of the Burghölzli psychiatric hospital in Zurich from 1898 to 1927, was a reformer. He took his psychotic patients seriously, focused on personal treatment and pushed for improvements in conditions. He championed a community environment for patients rather than institutionalisation, and he avoided the use of straitjackets where possible.

Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity. At a time when controversial historical figures are increasingly under the microscope, how should we judge scientists like Bleuler?

“Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”

Eugene Bleuler director of the Burghölzli psychiatric hospital in Zurich from 1898 to 1927, was a reformer. He took his psychotic patients seriously, focused on personal treatment and pushed for improvements in conditions. He championed a community environment for patients rather than institutionalisation, and he avoided the use of straitjackets where possible.

However, his theory, and that of other psychiatrists, that undesirable behaviour was genetically transmitted was used to justify forced sterilisation and castration.

Writing in his seminal study of 1911, Dementia Praecox, or the Group of Schizophrenias, Bleuler noted that “castration, of course, is of no benefit to the patients themselves. However, it is to be hoped that sterilisation will soon be employed on a larger scale … for eugenic reasons”.

In the same article he claimed that “most of our worst restraining measures would be unnecessary if we were not duty bound to preserve the patients’ lives which, for them as well as for others, are only of negative value”.

In 1924 Bleuler wrote in the Textbook of Psychiatry: “The more severely burdened should not propagate themselves … If we do nothing but make mental and physical cripples capable of propagating themselves, and the healthy stocks have to limit the number of their children because so much has to be done for the maintenance of others, if natural selection is generally suppressed, then unless we will get new measures our race must rapidly deteriorate.”

This appeal for “new measures” was soon answered in Europe and the United States by various laws permitting compulsory sterilisation or worse, although murder was spun as euthanasia or mercy killing.

“Eugen Bleuler was an exponent of the eugenics movement, a scientific and political movement aimed at improving the genetic make-up of populations. To this end, it called for interventions in human reproduction and sexuality. People who were considered genetically ‘unhealthy’ and ‘inferior’ were to be excluded from reproduction, while the reproduction of ‘healthy’ and ‘valuable’ parts of the population was to be encouraged,” Germann says.

Is it possible to say that Bleuler was basically a good man with good intentions – he did after all seem to genuinely care about his patients? Can one separate the good Bleuler from the bad Bleuler?

“No, that doesn’t seem to make sense to me. It’s more plausible that figures like Bleuler were influenced by the ambivalences of modernity. The science-based health efforts of modernity produced great achievements, but they often also led – and eugenics is just one particularly drastic example here – to exclusion and marginalisation. Or in the worst case were associated with a racism that regarded entire sections of the population as unhealthy, inferior and unworthy of life,” Germann says.

“The fact that some eugenicists were ‘good’ scientists does not mean that their research was morally acceptable or politically harmless. You can’t separate the one from the other.”

Oops

I do understand that using a term coined by a racist is not the same as naming a term after one. When you name a term after a person you are honoring them. Not so much with terms coined by them. That is why I personally do not identify as “Aspie” anymore while still identifying as “Autistic”. Despite that nuance “Autism” the term they demand we use fails the purity test big time. That is the problem with purity tests. They do not take into account the times the the person lived in, the good things they did. Weighing that good and bad about people is not easy. Luckily here on WP the use of “Aspie” and “Aspergers” is allowed without hassle.


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DSM 5: Autism Spectrum Disorder, DSM IV: Aspergers Moderate Severity

“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


Last edited by ASPartOfMe on 22 Nov 2022, 12:22 pm, edited 4 times in total.

lostonearth35
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22 Nov 2022, 11:24 am

So we can't say we have Asperger's, we're autistic, we're aspie, or we have ASD or anything because it offends the NT snowflakes who get offended by every little thing. Which is ironic, since it's offensive to me to not be allowed to say I have Asperger's.

Next the PC police will show up to throw us in prison for saying "fall on deaf ears" because it's so offensive to deaf people. Of course, the word "deaf" is also extremely offensive. It's literally a four letter word. Or "walking a mile in someone else's shoes" because it's offensive to people who can't walk. Or don't have shoes. What a stupid world.

Of course, no one is ever going to cancel the word "right" as meaning anything correct, good or positive because it's offensive to left-handed people. I'm left-handed and if all those other things are highly offensive then so is saying someone has "two-left feet", "left-handed compliment" human "rights", animal "rights", children's "rights", women's "rights", right right right wrong wrong wrong lol. :lol:



carlos55
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22 Nov 2022, 11:34 am

ASPartOfMe wrote:
Ever since two historians dug up evidence that Hans Asperger was complicit in the Nazi eugenics program some Autism Justice Warriors especially on ahem twitter have been bullying people who prefer to describe themselves as “Aspergers” or “Aspie”. You must use Autistic they demand because “Aspergers” was a Nazi term, that is why the DSM removed “Aspergers”.

First of all they have the history wrong. The term “Aspergers” was not coined by Hans Asperger. It showed up occasionally in psychology journals as early as the the 1950s but it was Lorna Wing who successfully proposed making it an official diagnosis decades later. It was not removed as an official diagnosis because of Hans Asperger’s nazi complicity, that information was barely known.

Second of all autistic people should be the last people bullying other autistic people. I remember 6 or 7 years ago when you could not read a comment section without a bunch of NT’s coming on and demanding we use the term “person with Autism” because “Autistic” is offensive. As a person with presumably 60 years more experience being Autistic then they do that did not go over well with me. I am not about to do that to others.

And then there is the politically correct term “Autism”.
Reviewing the legacy of racist scientists
Quote:
Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity.

Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”




Yes I agree with what your saying.

I suppose their anger stems from the condition named after him rather than by him though

I’m starting to believe this kind of overly PC obsessiveness is just part of ASD behavior so it comes with the territory. Many of them have too much time on their hands and spend all day on Twitter bullying someone who doesn’t agree with their universe.

It’s usually better to ignore them, fortunately the world doesn’t care either as the British say a storm in a tea cup!

The merging of the spectrum was lazy science and it was done out of convenience as the biological science to distinguish either doesn’t exist yet.

It has caused some absurd contradictions and stupid problems in being able to identify people’s needs properly.

I suspect it’s just something we’ll have to put up with for now unless of course the claims made in my last post are really happening in which case their may be light at the end of the tunnel


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ASPartOfMe
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22 Nov 2022, 11:53 am

carlos55 wrote:
ASPartOfMe wrote:
Ever since two historians dug up evidence that Hans Asperger was complicit in the Nazi eugenics program some Autism Justice Warriors especially on ahem twitter have been bullying people who prefer to describe themselves as “Aspergers” or “Aspie”. You must use Autistic they demand because “Aspergers” was a Nazi term, that is why the DSM removed “Aspergers”.

First of all they have the history wrong. The term “Aspergers” was not coined by Hans Asperger. It showed up occasionally in psychology journals as early as the the 1950s but it was Lorna Wing who successfully proposed making it an official diagnosis decades later. It was not removed as an official diagnosis because of Hans Asperger’s nazi complicity, that information was barely known.

Second of all autistic people should be the last people bullying other autistic people. I remember 6 or 7 years ago when you could not read a comment section without a bunch of NT’s coming on and demanding we use the term “person with Autism” because “Autistic” is offensive. As a person with presumably 60 years more experience being Autistic then they do that did not go over well with me. I am not about to do that to others.

And then there is the politically correct term “Autism”.
Reviewing the legacy of racist scientists
Quote:
Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity.

Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”




Yes I agree with what your saying.

I suppose their anger stems from the condition named after him rather than by him though

I’m starting to believe this kind of overly PC obsessiveness is just part of ASD behavior so it comes with the territory. Many of them have too much time on their hands and spend all day on Twitter bullying someone who doesn’t agree with their universe.

It’s usually better to ignore them, fortunately the world doesn’t care either as the British say a storm in a tea cup!

The merging of the spectrum was lazy science and it was done out of convenience as the biological science to distinguish either doesn’t exist yet.

It has caused some absurd contradictions and stupid problems in being able to identify people’s needs properly.

I suspect it’s just something we’ll have to put up with for now unless of course the claims made in my last post are really happening in which case their may be light at the end of the tunnel

The language policing problem goes way beyond autistic people.

Besides it’s racist and eugenicist roots that lack of agreement and knowledge as to what Autism is, is a valid reason not to use the term. I decided not to mention that because it is off topic. I also left out how much of a Nazi Asperger was and a detail as to why the DSM took Aspergers out for similar reasons.


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“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


ASPartOfMe
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22 Nov 2022, 12:27 pm

lostonearth35 wrote:
So we can't say we have Asperger's, we're autistic, we're aspie, or we have ASD or anything because it offends the NT snowflakes who get offended by every little thing. Which is ironic, since it's offensive to me to not be allowed to say I have Asperger's.

It is not NT snowflakes trying to cancel “Aspergers” it is a segment of autistic advocates.


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DSM 5: Autism Spectrum Disorder, DSM IV: Aspergers Moderate Severity

“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman


Summer_Twilight
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22 Nov 2022, 12:51 pm

ASPartOfMe wrote:
Ever since two historians dug up evidence that Hans Asperger was complicit in the Nazi eugenics program some Autism Justice Warriors especially on ahem twitter have been bullying people who prefer to describe themselves as “Aspergers” or “Aspie”. You must use Autistic they demand because “Aspergers” was a Nazi term, that is why the DSM removed “Aspergers”.

First of all they have the history wrong. The term “Aspergers” was not coined by Hans Asperger. It showed up occasionally in psychology journals as early as the the 1950s but it was Lorna Wing who successfully proposed making it an official diagnosis decades later. It was not removed as an official diagnosis because of Hans Asperger’s nazi complicity, that information was barely known at the time.

Second of all autistic people should be the last people bullying other autistic people. I remember 6 or 7 years ago when you could not read a comment section without a bunch of NT’s coming on and demanding we use the term “person with Autism” because “Autistic” is offensive. As a person with presumably 60 years more experience being Autistic then they did that did not go over well with me. I am not about to do that to others.

And then there is the politically correct term “Autism”.
Reviewing the legacy of racist scientists
Quote:
Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity.

Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”

Bleuler, director of the Burghölzli psychiatric hospital in Zurich from 1898 to 1927, was a reformer. He took his psychotic patients seriously, focused on personal treatment and pushed for improvements in conditions. He championed a community environment for patients rather than institutionalisation, and he avoided the use of straitjackets where possible.

Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity. At a time when controversial historical figures are increasingly under the microscope, how should we judge scientists like Bleuler?

“Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”

Eugene Bleuler director of the Burghölzli psychiatric hospital in Zurich from 1898 to 1927, was a reformer. He took his psychotic patients seriously, focused on personal treatment and pushed for improvements in conditions. He championed a community environment for patients rather than institutionalisation, and he avoided the use of straitjackets where possible.

However, his theory, and that of other psychiatrists, that undesirable behaviour was genetically transmitted was used to justify forced sterilisation and castration.

Writing in his seminal study of 1911, Dementia Praecox, or the Group of Schizophrenias, Bleuler noted that “castration, of course, is of no benefit to the patients themselves. However, it is to be hoped that sterilisation will soon be employed on a larger scale … for eugenic reasons”.

In the same article he claimed that “most of our worst restraining measures would be unnecessary if we were not duty bound to preserve the patients’ lives which, for them as well as for others, are only of negative value”.

In 1924 Bleuler wrote in the Textbook of Psychiatry: “The more severely burdened should not propagate themselves … If we do nothing but make mental and physical cripples capable of propagating themselves, and the healthy stocks have to limit the number of their children because so much has to be done for the maintenance of others, if natural selection is generally suppressed, then unless we will get new measures our race must rapidly deteriorate.”

This appeal for “new measures” was soon answered in Europe and the United States by various laws permitting compulsory sterilisation or worse, although murder was spun as euthanasia or mercy killing.

“Eugen Bleuler was an exponent of the eugenics movement, a scientific and political movement aimed at improving the genetic make-up of populations. To this end, it called for interventions in human reproduction and sexuality. People who were considered genetically ‘unhealthy’ and ‘inferior’ were to be excluded from reproduction, while the reproduction of ‘healthy’ and ‘valuable’ parts of the population was to be encouraged,” Germann says.

Is it possible to say that Bleuler was basically a good man with good intentions – he did after all seem to genuinely care about his patients? Can one separate the good Bleuler from the bad Bleuler?

“No, that doesn’t seem to make sense to me. It’s more plausible that figures like Bleuler were influenced by the ambivalences of modernity. The science-based health efforts of modernity produced great achievements, but they often also led – and eugenics is just one particularly drastic example here – to exclusion and marginalisation. Or in the worst case were associated with a racism that regarded entire sections of the population as unhealthy, inferior and unworthy of life,” Germann says.

“The fact that some eugenicists were ‘good’ scientists does not mean that their research was morally acceptable or politically harmless. You can’t separate the one from the other.”

Oops

I do understand that using a term coined by a racist is not the same as naming a term after one. When you name a term after a person you are honoring them. Not so much with terms coined by them. That is why I personally do not identify as “Aspie” anymore while still identifying as “Autistic”. Despite that nuance “Autism” the term they demand we use fails the purity test big time. That is the problem with purity tests. They do not take into account the times the the person lived in, the good things they did. Weighing that good and bad about people is not easy. Luckily here on WP the use of “Aspie” and “Aspergers” is allowed without hassle.


I will tell you that I have zero respect for people who run ASAN right now because I feel like there is not real solution. Rather, the attitude is "All of you who disagree with us are enemies." I have seen them preach about acceptance and inclusion and "All Means All" but when it comes to accepting self-advocates who use the "People first reference" and accept the puzzle piece they treat them poorly. The talk about being bullied by others yet it's okay for them to bully others and I have a real problem with that.



carlos55
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22 Nov 2022, 4:12 pm

Summer_Twilight wrote:
ASPartOfMe wrote:
Ever since two historians dug up evidence that Hans Asperger was complicit in the Nazi eugenics program some Autism Justice Warriors especially on ahem twitter have been bullying people who prefer to describe themselves as “Aspergers” or “Aspie”. You must use Autistic they demand because “Aspergers” was a Nazi term, that is why the DSM removed “Aspergers”.

First of all they have the history wrong. The term “Aspergers” was not coined by Hans Asperger. It showed up occasionally in psychology journals as early as the the 1950s but it was Lorna Wing who successfully proposed making it an official diagnosis decades later. It was not removed as an official diagnosis because of Hans Asperger’s nazi complicity, that information was barely known at the time.

Second of all autistic people should be the last people bullying other autistic people. I remember 6 or 7 years ago when you could not read a comment section without a bunch of NT’s coming on and demanding we use the term “person with Autism” because “Autistic” is offensive. As a person with presumably 60 years more experience being Autistic then they did that did not go over well with me. I am not about to do that to others.

And then there is the politically correct term “Autism”.
Reviewing the legacy of racist scientists
Quote:
Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity.

Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”

Bleuler, director of the Burghölzli psychiatric hospital in Zurich from 1898 to 1927, was a reformer. He took his psychotic patients seriously, focused on personal treatment and pushed for improvements in conditions. He championed a community environment for patients rather than institutionalisation, and he avoided the use of straitjackets where possible.

Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler coined several now-common psychological terms such as schizophrenia, autism and ambivalence. He also believed “mental and physical cripples” should be sterilised in order to preserve racial purity. At a time when controversial historical figures are increasingly under the microscope, how should we judge scientists like Bleuler?

“Swiss individuals and institutions helped produce the toxic waste of scientific racism and played a leading role in international eugenics,” says Pascal Germann, an expert on the history of eugenics and racism at the University of Bern’s Institute for the History of Medicine.

“In other words, they didn’t merely follow the zeitgeist but actively shaped these ideologies and practices of exclusion. This should be a topic in schools and universities.”

Eugene Bleuler director of the Burghölzli psychiatric hospital in Zurich from 1898 to 1927, was a reformer. He took his psychotic patients seriously, focused on personal treatment and pushed for improvements in conditions. He championed a community environment for patients rather than institutionalisation, and he avoided the use of straitjackets where possible.

However, his theory, and that of other psychiatrists, that undesirable behaviour was genetically transmitted was used to justify forced sterilisation and castration.

Writing in his seminal study of 1911, Dementia Praecox, or the Group of Schizophrenias, Bleuler noted that “castration, of course, is of no benefit to the patients themselves. However, it is to be hoped that sterilisation will soon be employed on a larger scale … for eugenic reasons”.

In the same article he claimed that “most of our worst restraining measures would be unnecessary if we were not duty bound to preserve the patients’ lives which, for them as well as for others, are only of negative value”.

In 1924 Bleuler wrote in the Textbook of Psychiatry: “The more severely burdened should not propagate themselves … If we do nothing but make mental and physical cripples capable of propagating themselves, and the healthy stocks have to limit the number of their children because so much has to be done for the maintenance of others, if natural selection is generally suppressed, then unless we will get new measures our race must rapidly deteriorate.”

This appeal for “new measures” was soon answered in Europe and the United States by various laws permitting compulsory sterilisation or worse, although murder was spun as euthanasia or mercy killing.

“Eugen Bleuler was an exponent of the eugenics movement, a scientific and political movement aimed at improving the genetic make-up of populations. To this end, it called for interventions in human reproduction and sexuality. People who were considered genetically ‘unhealthy’ and ‘inferior’ were to be excluded from reproduction, while the reproduction of ‘healthy’ and ‘valuable’ parts of the population was to be encouraged,” Germann says.

Is it possible to say that Bleuler was basically a good man with good intentions – he did after all seem to genuinely care about his patients? Can one separate the good Bleuler from the bad Bleuler?

“No, that doesn’t seem to make sense to me. It’s more plausible that figures like Bleuler were influenced by the ambivalences of modernity. The science-based health efforts of modernity produced great achievements, but they often also led – and eugenics is just one particularly drastic example here – to exclusion and marginalisation. Or in the worst case were associated with a racism that regarded entire sections of the population as unhealthy, inferior and unworthy of life,” Germann says.

“The fact that some eugenicists were ‘good’ scientists does not mean that their research was morally acceptable or politically harmless. You can’t separate the one from the other.”

Oops

I do understand that using a term coined by a racist is not the same as naming a term after one. When you name a term after a person you are honoring them. Not so much with terms coined by them. That is why I personally do not identify as “Aspie” anymore while still identifying as “Autistic”. Despite that nuance “Autism” the term they demand we use fails the purity test big time. That is the problem with purity tests. They do not take into account the times the the person lived in, the good things they did. Weighing that good and bad about people is not easy. Luckily here on WP the use of “Aspie” and “Aspergers” is allowed without hassle.


I will tell you that I have zero respect for people who run ASAN right now because I feel like there is not real solution. Rather, the attitude is "All of you who disagree with us are enemies." I have seen them preach about acceptance and inclusion and "All Means All" but when it comes to accepting self-advocates who use the "People first reference" and accept the puzzle piece they treat them poorly. The talk about being bullied by others yet it's okay for them to bully others and I have a real problem with that.


ASAN are just slaves of the pathology label imposed on them despite their hatred of the pathology model. The "A" in ASAN stands for Autism rather than Asperger's so they try to take ownership of the whole spectrum including the most disabling parts and have their one size fits all narrative and solution that unsurprisingly doesn't work.

As much as I'm not a fan of aspie supremacists at least they recognise because they are usually so hf with a high IQ, they can't & don't speak for autism and probably see all these petty things as beneath them.

I'm sure they probably have their own club (not sure what or where it is) but they don't have to deal with all the crap & contradictions that ASAN do.


_________________
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends upon the unreasonable man."

- George Bernie Shaw