So we have conservative pundit George Will in Newsweek calling Trump “Socially Autistic” to describe his total lack of empathy or compassion. No. Just no.
After my first response (“Fuck you!” for anybody who wanted to know) I remembered to breathe and put a little bit more thought into a statement about this latest example of autism being used as an insult, a slur. Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem whatsoever with Trump being insulted (or impeached, locked up, dumped in the middle of the ocean, fired into space, etc.). But you don’t throw my identity around as a slur.
Bottom-feeding pond life like George Will don’t care about what autism is, only that it isn’t them and it can be used to imply their target is a failed, broken person. It’s the same when those who commit evil abhorrent acts like mass shootings are referred to as mentally ill. It’s all used to distance those people, to say they’re not like “us normal folks”. It’s called “othering”: there’s us, and there’s them, the “others”.
So that they don’t have to confront the idea that people just like them can be awful human beings, they stick labels on them. Doesn’t matter what the label is, whether it’s appropriate or accurate. Only that it refers to some other group of people who they see as inferior.
Autism and mental illness are not your go-to bogeymen, tales to frighten children. Not monsters, not sub-human. We are not “less than” anybody else. This is not acceptable. So take your false stereotypes about empathy and everything else and stick them up your ass.
You can see I’ve thought deeply about it. So now I’ve got a more considered, rational response to George Will, Newsweek and any other shitstain who throws people like me under the bus: