Sorry I haven’t posted for over a month. Life has a habit of getting in the way sometimes.
I learnt about this noxious video from Orac and Matt.
I’ve been having problems with embedding, so here’s a direct link to the video in question on YouTube. The woman speaking in the video is Polly Tommey, one of the most longstanding supporters of Andrew Wakefield, and a fervent believer that vaccines cause autism. And what she says in the video is as evil as hell.
She says that she will not judge any parent who murders their autistic child.
There is a narrative, a poisonous, hateful narrative, that holds that autistics have such awful lives that it is acceptable, sometimes even an act of mercy, to “end their suffering”. Sadly, it’s a belief that is still all too common. Parents who murder their autistic children typically get far lighter sentences than those who kill their neurotypical children. When a news story about an autistic child being killed by his or her parents runs, there will be comments saying how difficult it must have been for the parent. Tommey’s comments feed this evil viewpoint. And yes, it is evil.
All lives have challenges and hardship. I know this personally. I have a life that is difficult in part because I’m autistic, yet it’s a pretty good one. It certainly could be better, but it could be a lot worse too. And I’m going to continue living it.
Which brings me to my second point.
Only one person can decide whether a life is worth living: the one living the life in question. Parents who murder their autistic children take it away from them and arrogate it to themselves. They declare that their children’s lives were not worth living. If you do not see just how wrong this is, I cannot help.
At Left Brain Right Brain, Matt wrote some very powerful things about this. I’m going to quote his words here because they are just so spot on and apt.
All people with disabilities are created equal. All have a right to life. A many are murdered. Why don’t you stand with them? Why do you stand with those who murder?
The phrase “parental rights” doesn’t exist in the Constitution. As a parent I am not endowed with the right to chose life or death for my child. Until you understand that, all your “freedom” rhetoric is, frankly, just a bullshit public relations effort.
When you refuse to judge, you enable. You make it just that little bit easier for parents and other caregivers to murder.
Quite. And Thank You Matt.
I have #ALifeWorthLiving.