Age of Autism Award: Jim Carrey, Quote of the Year
Entering the New Year as Public Enemy #1

Age of Autism Awards: Steven Higgs, Best New Blogger

Autism5_200 Managing Editor's Note: You can subscribe to Steven Higg's blog  

By Anne Dachel
As autism continues to overwhelm our children and health officials still haven't figured out if there's a problem, the Internet has become a source for answers for countless thousands.  The mainstream media rarely deviates from announcing the latest autism gene study and giving us the standard claim that no one knows if more kids have autism.  Vaccines have been exonerated.  Major news sources work to lull the public into autism acceptance.  Autism happens; we just need to adjust and accommodate it. 
Any rational adult can recognize that something is very wrong.  A generation of children is now afflicted with a disorder no one ever heard about 30 years ago.  Kids like this weren't around when we were young.  Enter the Internet.  Real information is a click away.  Sources that never make the network news can be found there.  One of these, the Bloomington Alternative (HERE), is outstanding.  The work of Steven Higgs, editor and publisher of The Bloomington Alternative since 2002, deserves recognition by the autism community. Higgs ( collects his columns in a blog called Autism and the Indiana Environment.

Here is his own description of the blog's creation: "It's been a year since John McCain piqued my reporter's curiosity about the parallel epidemics of autism and environmental pollution that have swept our nation the past couple decades, a journalistically productive and, sadly, intellectually reaffirming 12-month period, to be sure.

Since the Arizona senator announced on the campaign trail last year that he would find the cause of autism if elected, I have pursued the question through interviews with parents, clinicians, advocates, physicians and researchers; stories, articles and books; and more than a few studies and videos. I've also published nearly a dozen-and-a-half stories on the subject in The Bloomington Alternative, CounterPunch online and print editions, NUVO and IU Alumni Magazine.

So far, nothing I've found contradicts my initial premise that toxic pollution is a contributing factor to the meteoric rise we've seen in the incidence of autism. To the contrary, that argument seems more plausible today than it did when I began this time last year. All signs point to "yes," so I am taking this project to the next level.

Phase II, as it were, will involve a more in-depth analysis of the connection between environmental pollution and autism in Indiana, within a new literary framework. From this point forward, the online aspect of this project will be called the "Autism and the Indiana Environment" blog. And it will involve research for a book with a working title of "Autism and the Environment: Indiana, Industrial Pollution and Developmental Disabilities," as well as more freelance writing."

Higg's stories are easily found on Google News.
Dec 27, 2009, Defeating autism, now (HERE) talked about biomedical and dietary intervention. 

Dec 20, 2009, Autism epidemic in Monroe County (HERE) gave readers this stunning information:

"Dec 18, 2009, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a new report that put the incidence of autism in the United States at 1 in 110 for children born in 1996, or 0.9 percent of the population. A survey, sponsored by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau of the Health Resources and Services Administration and published in the journal Pediatrics in October, showed 1 in 91 children between the ages of 3 and 17 had autism.
"According to figures submitted by the Monroe County Community School Corp. (MCCSC) to state and federal governments last year, one in every 60 students, or 1.7 percent, had an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) diagnosis in December 2008."

Dec 17, 2009, Heavy Metal Kids (HERE) explored the impact of toxic exposures.
And Dec 6, 2009, Seeking the cause of autism (HERE) talked about the controversy linking vaccines to autism. 

"Handley, founder of what is now known as McCarthy and husband Jim Carrey's Generation Rescue, says thimerosal is but one of dozens of vaccine-based substances that could contribute to the upward trend of ASD diagnoses.

" 'In the 1980s, we gave a max of 10 shots to youngsters, today 36,' Handley wrote in a Nov. 15, 2009, e-mail. 'With this 'simultaneity' of layering on shots, how do we figure out what thing about shots is causing the trouble? Yes, mercury is particularly bad, but we're giving 36 shots with 81 separate ingredients, all thrown onto the schedule rapidly since 1990, which just happens to parallel the rise in autism.' "

These are the stories that should be on the front page of every newspaper and the lead reports on network news.  Sadly, they're not.  There are too many interests that force the mainstream media to downplay what's happening to our children.  We owe a debt of gratitude Steven Higgs for giving the public the truth.  His courageous efforts add another voice to a growing chorus.  People are listening--especially those who realize that traditional news sources stopped caring about what's happening to our children long ago.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor of Age of Autism.


Fiona Sinclair

Twenty years ago, in a previous life, I campaigned against the incineration of toxic waste and have kept abreast of the main thrust of the science on waste incineration since that time. It's ironic, therefore, that I am also the mum of a 13 year old who has autism.

I don't believe that vaccines are the sole cause of autism. I do believe that they may well be part of the picture for many children with autism and the straw that breaks the camel's back for others.

If `mainstream` media and medicine asserts that autism has an environmental cause - or even a trigger - then we ought to challenge them to investigate further the already extensive scientific research on the known effects of environmental toxins on the human brain. The World Health Organisation is calling for further research on precisely these kind of effects - the WHO is not exactly known for radicalism.

Autism Rights submitted evidence to a committee of the Scottish Parliament which included a section on the neurological effects of environmental toxins. That fully referenced evidence can be accessed online and utilised by anyone who is interested.
- see page 5, under the heading `Environmental
Toxins and their Neurotoxic and Immunological Effects`

As stated by others, there are other conditions that are on the rise, yet there is no apparent motivation amongst those who govern us to investigate why this should be. Isn't it about time we found common cause with other organisations who are working on the health effects of environmental toxins? As Martha Herbert has observed, knowing the causes of autism should enable us to define and develop treatments - something that every good doctor and politician should want!



You just got my vote it takes real courage from real people who work in this field everyday to make a difference. I just wish I could have run across a nurse like you while I was in training and practice before my children were born.

Please remember many of the physian you meet now have been brained washed in school like I was and do not know what they do not know. Many cannot discuss the epidemiology or pathogenesis of any of the viral diseases like polio or Hep B because that is not what they do. It is shocking and shameful actually how these people who are physicians are clueless to what they are reccomending. When the truth comes out and it will come out there will be a reckoning.

So when you meet one of these doc's that clearly have no clue ask them some basic questions like How many vaccines do you think children get today? Did you know that vaccine injuries have to go to a special court and not the same malpractice court you go to? Why does a female baby need a vaccine whose protective effects only last 10 years maybe for a sexually transmitted disease that predominately occurs in male homosexuals with the second most common group being IVDA's? Do you consider this efficacious? Most will have no answer and then you can educate them without hurting their ego too much.

They will all thank you later if they have no children yet and they will give you their vote too!!!!!

NAA Indiana

I was very excited to see that Steven Higgs was chosen for this award. I have exchanged several emails with him and I can tell you this: he's not afraid to uncover the truth. Indiana really needs someone like him to uncover the relationship between the (very hight) toxins in certain areas of the state and developmental disorders. I'm really looking forward to seeing what he comes up with in 2010.


As a nurse in a rural health clinic, and ANTI-VACCINE AND PROUD TO SAY IT!, I see firsthand the differences in the health of vaccinated v.s. unvaccinated children. I speak to young mothers in our small town about the unnessary injection of antigens and toxic substances into their 1 day old baby. I am following 3 young children ages 2.5 years, 9 months, and 15 months who have not been vaccinated. Guess what? No trips to doctors offices for ear infections, asthma, GI disturbances, respiratory infections, etc.
Every child seen in our clinic for illnesses have received their full "set" of vaccinations. I know it is a small number for an unvaccinated v.s. vaccinated study, but I'm doing my small part in speaking out and will continue to even if it means losing my nursing license.
To bring down big pharma will be like David and Goliath and we all need to speak to young mothers and fathers about the dangers of vaccines.
Dr. Eisentstein in Ohio treats thousands of patients, free of diseases and "unvaccinated". is a great site for information as well as Dr. Sherry Tenpenny, and the article written by Dr. Rebecca Carley, "Inoculations: The True Weapons of Mass Destruction". Another article is "B cells move to centre stage: novel opportunities for autoimmune disease treatment" written by Dr. Jeffrey Browning Dept. of immunobiology. This article was originally written for big pharma to create more drugs to treat disease and what it talks about is how the human immune system works. Basically saying our God given immune system works fine until we corrupt it with injected antigens or toxins from our environment.


"So far, nothing I've found contradicts my initial premise that toxic pollution is a contributing factor to the meteoric rise we've seen in the incidence of autism. To the contrary, that argument seems more plausible today than it did when I began this time last year. All signs point to "yes," so I am taking this project to the next level"

Autism is Iatrogenic(physicians related) caused by live virus vaccines in imature immune systems. This is why premature babies have a rate two to three times that of full term babies- look it up. Children that are breast fed and get immunoglobulins specifically Iga and have less severe and lower rates of autism- look that up too.
The only "enVIRONment" we should be focused on now is the doctors office and the syringes full of vaccines that truly are not even indicated. Do not lose focus.

They attacked Andy Wakefield because he is right on the money, the GI tract is the key and the pathogenesis of this disease process will be discerned by looking at the GI tract and it's response to exogenous viruses and the pharm psychos know this. Once you determine the pathogenesis you can work backwards to alleviate the problem. Immune systems can be manipulated even in twenty year old adults.

You cure your childs GI tract and you cure their autism that also goes for ADD and ADHD as well

Marcella Piper-Terry

Thank-you to Age of Autism for recognizing Steven Higgs and his very important work.

For seven years I have felt like the only person here in Indiana who cares about these children and what the environment is doing to them. It is a wonderful feeling to know that at last, someone else is picking up the torch and others are beginning to listen.

Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you, Steven Higgs! From the depths of my soul.

Marcella Piper-Terry


Glad to have found this blog, thanks. Higgs looks like the Olmstead of Indiana. I have signed up for the blog.

May the new year be full of TRUTH.


What a great choice for an award.

It's funny how opponents to vaccine safety research, when they verge on admitting that "something environmental" may play a role, they accuse our community of ignoring all the "other" potential culprits in the environment aside from vaccines. But I've never found that statement to be true; this award is only one bit of evidence for that argument. Age of Autism, Generation Rescue, Safe Minds and other groups all immediately reported Palmer et al. and studies showing that rates of autism rise proportionately to proximity to Superfund dump sites and coal fired power plants. Our community hosts discussions on Bisphenyl A in plastics, links to Environmental Working Group's reports on toxicity. DAN doctors at conferences openly discuss the effects of fertility treatment on genes, pollution and other susceptibility factors. Parents trade tips on avoiding toxic overload and it was through the vaccine injury community that I learned of the FDA report on lead in women's and children's supplements, nanoparticles in sunscreen, the effects of tylenol on glutathione, etc.

Ultimately I don't believe in the "everything and the kitchen sink" cause of autism. In the end I believe Mark Blaxill's remark that "epidemics are simple". I think that the central culprits-- without which "autism" as we know it would not be formed-- will turn out to be a few substances which mimic each other's physiological and neurological impact either alone or in combination (i.e., mercury combined with live herpes type viruses may cause similar damage to the brain as the drug Depakote on susceptible individuals). But I believe that whatever these few, central causes are, there will turn out to be thousands of chemical "facilitators" which act as accessories to the biological "crime" (such as Tylenol, which inhibits the body's ability to rid itself of heavy metals or mitochondrial toxins which induce increased susceptibility to the cause(s) of autism).

I don't believe that genetic susceptibility will turn out to be the main component of "who gets it" because I believe that the "necessary" susceptibility can be fully induced if it's not preexisting (many drugs, for instance psychiatric drugs, induce autoimmune conditions like thyroid disorder or mitochondrial defects, which may be cases of "induced" susceptibility to autism). Sometimes it could boil down to whether a child was sick at the time of vaccination (or combined exposures), not their genes which determined whether they would cascade into the disorder.

Harold L Doherty

Thank you for highlighting Steven Higgs blog. The "environmental component" of autism has been neglected for far too long. The more people draw attention to it the better.

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