I awoke this morning to find this post on Facebook by my son who has Asperger's Syndrome. If you ever thought those who suffer from autism are unemotional, disconnected from others and untouched by the horrendous violence towards those in their community, Ben's words are going to change your mind:
Hey guys hope your weekend is going good. I want to let you all know about some news I just heard. This news may be shocking to some of you out there but this is something I MUST tell you in order to send my message. I found out that, in a city in Ohio, a group of high school kids did a prank on a classmate of theirs. This group of kids humiliated a 14 year-old boy by pouring "water" on him while they recorded it on his phone.
The real kicker to this story: The boy has AUTISM and the "water"? It was piss, crap, spit, and cigar butts. It astounds me just how CRUEL and EVIL people can be sometimes. What causes humans to do this? Hatred? Joy? Or maybe they just want to see people get hurt so they can feel better about themselves and the satisfaction it may give them.
I have autism and I'm proud of it. I am glad I am able to have a unique perspective on this world and see for what it truly is. But to see people do such a thing...It is UNDESERVING, DISGUSTING, and UNFORGIVABLE! Making fun of autism and the people who have it is like taking something precious and kind and smashing it against the wall.
I will not FORGIVE those who make fun of autism PERIOD.
I saw that actor Drew Carey offered $10,000 as a reward to finding those kids and Drew says if they don't want the money, then he will send it to an autism charity. And for that, Drew Carey, I say THANK YOU. You're a good and kind person as well as funny. Thank you for helping those in need of a hand on their shoulder.
To the family of the boy, I am deeply sorry about what happened to your son and I hope those kids get the punishment they deserve. Autism is something unique and wonderful; it doesn't need hate in its existence. Only love.
Ben has found his voice and acceptance of autism. Now, he's using it to stand up for others. Just like any 'normal' person would do. The violence against and mistreatment of people with autism is a disturbing trend. Let Ben's words motivate you to help make it stop.