walkitout (walkitout) wrote,


Okay, just for the record here, autism spectrum disorders are, shall we say, pervasive in my immediate and extended family, diagnosed and otherwise. I _care_ about this issue. At the same time, I'm quite skeptical about the diagnosis and treatment of austism spectrum disorders. There's a shocking amount of bad science (even for medicine!), practice that says it matches the science there is and then does something different (often for the better!), and shotgun approaches to treatment -- try everything, see if anything sticks.

I got some e-mail today asking me to take action regarding a New York Senate bill (I live in Massachusetts), pressing for one option:


and opposing the thing that Autism Speaks is backing. I don't know anything about what Autism Speaks is backing; I don't like Autism Speaks. They are creepy and annoying people.

But that bill! Fuck no! That just creates a giant hole which money will flow through. Autism spectrum disorders already suffer from junkiness: _everything_ gets tossed into the bucket, because it's the developmental disorder with the most mind share, activism and wtf going. It's the Cool developmental disorder -- Claire Danes played Temple Grandin in a movie recently and I'm not sure it gets much cooler than that. The predictable effect of this bill will be that anything someone can't get an insurance company to pay for in New York will get labeled autism. And _that_ will really help us understand and treat whatever is actually going on.

Autism is important. But a lot of other things are important to -- world peace, housing and safe food and water for everyone. I don't want to see those things lose money to another round of ABA designed to teach categories or whatever. This stuff should all go through the how much does it cost for what benefit analysis that I'd like to see all medical treatment go through.
Tags: autism, politics
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