On Disability and the 2nd amendment

Trigger warning: descriptions of violence and severe discrimination based on disability and ableism

 

this is not the post i originally had planned to blog after a considerable absence which i’ll get to later but i had a good start of a post on George Orwell’s book 1984 but as with all tech devices something went wrong and windows 8 ATE the file! ha ha. Now with that out of the way i want to talk about something that has been really bothering me for quite some time, that is disabled people and their right to own a gun. Life is already difficult for the disabled and then we’re having to pass a very detailed and thoroughly biased background check every time for firearm purchases just doesn’t make sense because being disabled is NOT a choice and i don’t think we need more legislation and red tape. with the proposed executive order this administration is going to create a heck of a lot of crime victims if they somehow have a questionnaire about DSM and physical diagnosis. As far as statistics go we are SEVEN time more likely to be assaulted than so called “normal” people and it’s usually for very minor trivial things such as sitting outside by ourselves. I have even heard of people who got robbed several times over the span of several months and they didn’t have adequate protection. Recent events have led me to realize that “normal” people are absoutely terrified of disabled people owning firearms because of what they see in the news, i hate the assumption that every time something bad happens and people get hurt or even killed the news blames “mentally unstable” and/or “autistic” people when all that’s going off of a VERY big assumption with no fact checking or cross referencing whatsoever! People with no history of mental illness or developmental disability do violent things all the time with guns and no one bats an eye which says alot about how the public’s perception is biased and s much as i hate to say it it’s a fact that if the government decides to disarm the disabled, people could possibly die and have very little or no justice done to the attacker for his or her wrongdoing and the media ALWAYS blames disabled people for “bringing it on themselves” this is why i am a member of the NRA and plan on being one until the day i die because i want to prolong the rights and lives of the disabled and NOT abandon them just because some politician SCUMBAG decides to play on the plublic’s blatent ignorance of the problems disabled people face because of the arrogant ignorant ABLEIST way society “thinks’ about us(not to mention that it’s a slap in the face to every soldier who has served this nation throughout it’s 243 year history) Also, the press going after people who recieve Social Security “benefits” are going after the same people who fought and where injured in war or while in law enforcement. These people fought to protect “normal” people’s freedom from tyranny and now they want to demonize them just because they became disabled?! this also applies to developmentally disabled people who have done nothing wrong except be born differently to the majority and got labled with whatever the heck these “doctors” put in the latest version of the DSM (which should stand for Depressingly Systemic Malignence) which gives them an excuse to exclude from being considered HUMAN! which is absolutely rediculous on the face of it! I wholeheartedly think that the media needs regulation on what they can say about the disabled when it comes to acts of sensless violence because blaming a whole category of people for the actions of a few is extremely disrespectful to them and doesn’t solve anything. Disability “awareness” only adds to this, people’s fear and prejudice and contributes to marginalization of disabled people and makes it harder for us to assert our human rights In closing i really don’t think society should be as prejudiced against disabled people’s right to self defense and the constitution of the United States applies to ALL citizens not just certain ones who are “normal”. This is the ONLY thing that seperates us from all other society’s the world over.

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Passions and Interests

Sometimes constricting my inner experience of life into words is exceedingly painfully difficult, so much that i’m running up against language limitations of every sort, but i want now to talk about my passions in life as well as what i enjoy doing with my time. Getting into all the problems disabled people face sometimes gets me drowning in an overwhelming sea of negativity. I would like to go into some of the positive aspects (and yes i know it’s a contradiction of words, work with me here.) of being differently wired. Take for instance, reading; I love reading and i know that for many people in grade through high school reading seemd like an arduous chore, but for me it came naturally and i could read aloud and it helped with speech difficulties when i was younger. I find it interesting that people don’t spend more time reading and expanding their knowlege but instead focusing on gossip and other trivialities of people they know personally and people they’ve never met but I digress. another passion i have is for music and i listen to it almost constantly. Music is the one thing that lifts me up when life gets me down. it’s very hard to describe how listening to music effect my brain but it’s very powerful. Yet another one is (and yes i know this one is stereotyped a lot in autism literature) disassembling and fixing stuff. How things work and go together has always interested me and sometimes i’d end up breaking broken things more by trying to fix them that’s why i had to buy a new iPod because mine was broken and i didn’t know how fragile the innards were! But to make a long story short, I don’t think that stereotyping interests that autistic people have is very helpful for a few reasons: one being that it tends to condense our humanity and spirit down to a list of symptoms and deficits and that’s not really fair or accurate. Another being that it draws heavily on assumption and theory rather than actual objective facts. Well i hope that whoever reads this it wasn’t a waste of thier valuable time and i hope to spread some enlightenment to people about the ability of my people to get totally into a subject and get so absorbed into it that we won’t come out for days! but i hope this helps and i’m off to start another post on another topic soon!

Stereotyping and people’s assumptions part one of (unfortunately) many

Lately people have really shown their true colors without even realizing it. I don’t even know where to begin when it comes to social prejudices against my neurology but this will attempt to be a start. I guess i should start by saying that in reality i don’t hate people i just hate their assumptions of what neurodivergents like me are supposed to be like and it doesn’t get better just because we have the internet and 24 hour news channels. In fact i feel that disinformation and bias circulate faster now than when i was a kid because now we have faster internet speeds. At work this can lead to all sorts of interpersonal problems between myself and other employees. i’ll give an example, Thursday I was just sitting by myself, minding my own business with a few co workers across from me, and i hear one of them talking and complaining saying that the person across from them “must have ADHD or Autism and that’s why he’s “crazy”, now keep in mind that i heard this and i’m not even two feet away from this guy and i and the person across from me BOTH have those diagnoses he mentioned and that REALLY gets on my nerves! i mean, where the heck did he get his info and is that really how badly society is misinformed? If that’s the case then i will definitely be posting more often because that sort of ignorance is why i don’t disclose my disabilities to hardly anyone! if that’s what certain organizations have brought the level of “awareness” up to then i definitely have my work cut out for me. Aaaaaaannnnnd to top it all off later the same day i overhear another conversation between two other {management} employees that basically said i have no ability to think!!!!!!!! ALL i was trying to do was my job and having to witness people’s arrogance and ignorance let’s me know that discrimination and SEVERE ableism is a thing, folks. UGH rant over

On People Who Where Diagnosed Later in Life But Their Diagnosis is Recent

Well, the idea for this post came about several years ago when i was looking for more info on prognosis of autism in adults. i didn’t find much in the way of positive outcomes (or any outcomes for that matter) and finally it’s making it’s way to a word processor and my blog naturally. I want to say that i’ve been surfing the internet and all i’ve come across is the persistent trope of “if only i knew i was autistic earlier it would have made a difference” well, here’s my big fat truth bomb of NO IT WOULDN’T! because therapy wasn’t anywhere near adequate for someone who was a child much less an adult in those days. All we had growing up in the 90’s was Applied Behavioral Analysis ( which should stand for Abusive Bastardizing Alterations, but more on that later) and Behavior Modification. Both of these “therapies” just forcibly tells us that everything we do think or say is automatically wrong and we can do nothing right. Compared to what they have today it’s like the frickin’ stone age and i feel kike those of us born before 1993 got cheated out of a LOT as a result of being who we where and nobody had a clue. It feels like we where the first to get officially recognized and to have these “therapies” beta tested on us to see the results. Well let me tell you that growing up i kind of felt like a guinea pig. but in all seriousness, people who are diagnosed with autism today have a much better chance of actually getting services tailored to the individual’s needs. Growing up alone and with no one who understands what you go through and having to go it alone with no support would NOT be a good thing. These people should just be thankful they got missed until fairly recently. Having said that, i’m sure that it would have given them peace of mind but the fact of the matter is that research has come a LONG way since i was diagnosed and there is an actual community online that is supportive. One final note also is that the stigma of autism is getting a lot better than it used to be and society is starting to actually see us as fellow human beings but it took WAY to long to get to this point.

On the majority’s ignorance and their concept of Autism and other disabilities as a “prison”

I’ve come to the unfortunate realization that people who are ignorant about autism and other disabilities seem to think they know all about our conditions and what it’s like to live with them. It never ceases to amaze me how these same people who think we have no empathy and don’t “know the contents of our own minds” never actually went outside their comfort zone and bridged the gap by asking one of us because they think autism means lack of intelligence. We are not “trapped inside our own world” we are stuck in this one and to be quite frank, it sucks because these “normal” people always twist our words around to conform to what they know and it’s usually a stereotype. Autistic people like me have been trying for years to tell various people we know, albeit without mentioning our diagnosis, that nothing they hear about autism is actually based on facts and real information. It is all fearmongering by autism “advocacy” organizations and their affiliates. The “information” on autism is also flawed due to the fact that there is almost always a negative slant to everything that is said about us. this negativity also applies to almost every other disability under the sun. That’s the reason that a lot of us have blogs up on the internet because of the media’s irresponsible use of stereotype and slander. In that i mean that they make it impossible to get our messages out in official channels without being talked down to because of “functioning level”. All “functioning levels” are for is to make the clinician’s job easier to diagnose people, they have almost no basis on actual abilities and they fluctuate sometimes day by day (and if only the people who say i’m too “high functioning” to be autistic, saw me when i was much younger, they would change their minds in a hurry! LOL). The whole “prison” concept as a whole is why i am blogging because TWENTY PLUS years of being silenced and shut out of conversations about my disability gets old after about the first decade, and if autism is a prison, it’s one of other people’s minds not OURS.

“Lack of Empathy” and other misunderstandings

lately i’ve been thinking about how the textbooks on autism have always said that we lack concern about and don’t have empathy for, other people. They also state that we are “trapped inside” and “in our own world”, well it might appear that way because often our body language suggests that we are absent from conversations and not paying attention to those around us but this is definitely not the case. If I sometimes look like i’m not interested when someone talks to me i usually get a “you hear me?” or “are you listening?” out of them. When this happens i just want to say that yes i hear you and i’m actually trying to process your voice against the other (usually louder­) sounds in the background. Almost always this takes way longer than it should due to not being able to filter out other irrelevant noise and concentrate on what the person is saying. At work it becomes even harder because i work around a bunch of machines that are loud because they use a vacuum for keeping envelopes on the conveyor belts so they can be printed. when it comes to stereotypes of autism i really wish there weren’t so many because it’s wrong to make someone feel like just because they are autistic that they are not all “there” wherever there is LOL! I But in all seriousness, this supposed “Lack Of Empathy” leads a LOT of us to depression because, contrary to what most of you have heard we DO have emotions but it’s the expression of them that can throw you off. i often wish that there were schools where autistic and other socially awkward people could learn what to do but i guess that’s kind of unrealistic because of the almost infinite number of variables. Trying to figure out all social nuances and such that “normal” people take for granted all the time is very time consuming because it involves comparing my actual knowledge of how social nuance works (which is still a work in progress by the way) to their perceptions of what i know and they do make value judgements based on that. That is also why i’ve been called almost EVERY ableist slur in the book (which i will not go into on this blog just so disabled readers don’t have to wince when they read it. (keep in mind my “lack of empathy” lol) well i have run out of words to type but i hope that you will realize that people like me are trying our best to make it in the world and we don’t mean anything by it if we sometimes seem to ignore subtleties of communication and i hope this helps you understand (some of it ate least but more on that later.

Emotionally needy and abusive relationships

This is not the post i was hoping to start out on tonight but the last couple of weeks have been revelatory on how people treat other people they call thier friends. I really wish someone had told me as a kid that i would have people in my life that would try to control their friendship with me by saying horrible out of character things (such as the need to be with me all day almost EVERY day) as a means of control and manipulation. I am sick of emotionally needy people trying to control me. I also just need an extended break from peoples’ emotional states and all that stuff. i’m not sure what it is about me that attracts these people in droves but i wish i could get positive thinking people in my life without all the drama. I now think i’m just a one of a kind autistic because of the fact that almost all the other autistics i’ve met have been emotionally and mentally immature for their age(this is NOT a putdown or being slanderous it’s just an observation). The wierd thing about this particular friend is that i can’t be ANYWHERE other than where he is at for less than 5 minutes before he starts coping an attitude. If i talk with other people who are nearby but not sitting in the same place he gets irate and goes on a verbal tirade about how i supposedly don’t “care for him anymore”(those where his words). so recently i just decided that it would be best for me just to take a break from talking with him and just to do my own thing (even though it may make his attitude towards me worse in the short term) Oh and i can forget about getting closer to any of his friends than to him because that will make him even more clingy and i won’t hear the end of it. i know this post seems like kind of a rant but i feel i need to get this info out there just in case anyone has dealt with this kind of person and what to do about it. More positive topics are to follow but this is all i could come up with at this time(anymore it seems like i have to be actively thinking about something in my life that will trigger me to write something but i guess it’s a part of my disability (sorry for that old tired cliche but it is true in this case). well now that’s off my chest and i can get to post more positive informative subjects in the future.

On Ableism and Descrimination Against Disabled People

Recent events in my life have made me look at “normal” people in a whole different (and not so positive) light. People are WAY to ignorant for their own good when it comes to dealing with the invisibly disabled and that causes all sorts of stress in our lives. i’m talking about implied discrimination as well as the overt kind here. A few examples such as favoring a certain person or group of people because they DON’T have the same handicaps and treating the others who are outside that group worse because of it. i REALLY am getting sick and TIRED of this crap and it creates division and conflict where there shouldn’t be any. how this relates to me is that by being autistic i am by default on the outside of the groups and society as well and it makes it significantly more difficult to get on in life because by being on the outside you are automatically seen as less than they are. This translates to real world hardships such as lower wages and a lesser quality of life. I really wish society would realise that the type of handicap or disability is NOT a choice. I did not choose to be autistic, ADD and legally blind they just happened and being hateful or discriminatory to me on that basis should be punishable in some way because it’s no different that singling me out because of race or eye color. my disabilities go just as deep as those two examples and i really wish people weren’t so caught up in the (whatever it is that people observe about me that makes them think ‘this person isn’t like me and i will dehumanize them for it). And yet autistics are told ALL the time that the “experts” know a lot about autism and that we should trust them. i’m sorry but when you have scientists who only look for a CURE and not better treatments or support i feel threatened and unwanted because of my existence in a world that doesn’t want me and thinks they could do better without me. I just want to say that hurts more deeply on an emotional level than anyone could ever imagine. it makes me feel worthless and unworthy of life on an almost daily basis because of autism (something i was born with) and i wish they could see how they look through my eyes collectively and then they would know what normalistic intolerant people they really are. Some people talk about being an outsider but they are lying though because they wouldn’t know what being on the outside of society and social circles is really like. It’s isolating and desolate truly being on the outside of society. If i”m included in some conversations people may be superfically nice to me but talk to one another behind my back when i’m not around and it makes me feel like i don’t matter because of being autistic.

On “Functioning levels” and labels of functioning

Well my struggle with writer’s block is over and so is the long absence from my blog . one of the things i’ve been trying write about is how ambiguous “functioning labels” are because it’s rather vague. As an example an autistic may be considered “high functioning” as far as academic ability and homework but have great difficulty in doing laundry or cooking for themselves. A lot of times this has to do with what is called “executive function” or the ability to follow a series of steps in sequential order to complete a task. i have a few autistic friends in my life that this could easily apply to. One of them has trouble remembering what he did 5 minutes ago but can remember how to take apart and put back together his bike with little to no trouble. Another needs help with cutting food and organizing her cd collection to make it easier for her to find music to listen to. An example from my own life is getting the ingredients together for a meal becauase it’s tricky for me to get the proportions of each ingredient right. These so called “levels of functioning” are just there to make it easier to diagnose someone for the clinicians that do the assessments. i sometimes get REALLY irritated that my “level of functioning” is too high to receive even as much as the bare minimum of accommodations for “high functioning” people because i don’t appear as stereotypical as some of my autistic friends and i’m able to do some things they can’t. I find it ridiculous that we’re being judged on supposed “levels of functioning” just because we may fit one stereotype or another in a “normal” person’s mind and that has NOTHING AT ALL to do with the actual reality of autism. A lot of the the terms used to describe autistic people have to do with other people’s perceptions of our difficulties and strengths. People also seem to overlook our difficulties because they are blinded by our strengths and abilities. i hope this post wasn’t a boring read I’m NOT trying to be vague on purpose it’s just one of those things that i have trouble with due to being autistic but i”m NOT blaming it SOLEY on autism itself. to make a long story short i hope that you come away from reading this knowing that “functioning levels” are NOT for autistics or anyone else outside of the medical profession and that we’re a bit like the Transformers; there’s more than meets the eye!