What Should Autism Acceptance Month Look Like?

As we near the end of April, I am reflecting on what Autism Acceptance Month should look like.  Let’s take the focus off of things like dehumanizing Autistic people by calling us burdens, tsunamis, epidemics and basically using the month to amp up the rhetoric of hate.  We need to re-frame this month from “awareness” to “acceptance” and use this time to really and truly recognize and honor Autistic pride and Autistic culture.  These things exist.  These things should be celebrated often.

This is an essay by F, a ten year old Autistic kid.  These are his thoughts on Autistic and Disability Pride:

My Thoughts on Disability Pride and Seeing Lydia Brown, by F:  

One day, I went to see Lydia Brown at Bellevue College.   Lydia Brown is Autistic and a student in college.  Lydia is an activist for disabilities.  They talked about Disability Pride and other stuff about disabilities.

They talked about how people view disabilities.  They talked about how some people think disability is something that needs to be fixed.  Some people see the absolute opposite and say disability is natural.   I think I am natural.

They also talked about pride.  I think Lydia would be in favor of how proud I am to be Disabled.

I think Disability Pride is pretty cool.  We can do stuff that people don’t even think of.

Autistic people can have the power to change the world.  I can change the world by inventing things.  Or I can be the next president.

People who say you should not be proud because you have a disability are total and complete jerks.  I want people to know that so those jerks think twice about what they say.

It is a lot good to be different.  I think I am different sometimes.  I am Disabled.

My favorite part about the talk was that I was allowed to move around during the talk.  Some people don’t like that, but they were allowing us to move around.  They were pretty accepting of the way people move around.

My mom showed me this quote by Neil Marcus:

“Disability is not a ‘brave struggle’ or ‘courage in the face of adversity’.  Disability is an art.  It’s an ingenious way to live.” 

I think that means disability is not to be made fun of but to know that you have power.
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About Lei

PACLA is an Autistic friendly space dedicated to guiding parents toward respectful supports and accommodations for their Autistic children through the concepts of gentle parenting and a belief in the value of neurodiversity.

Posted on April 27, 2015, in Parenting Autistic Children with Love and Acceptance. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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