Kevin Leitch’s Jab in the Dark
Why Would a Principal Call the Police to Arrest a Special Needs 11 Year Old?

Tune into IACC Monday: Are You and Your Spouse Cousins?

Deliverance Managing Editor's Note: You can read Katie Wright's informative and often jaw dropping posts on the IACC by scrolling through her category, HERE.

By Katie Wright

I have many favorite IACC moments. At the top of the list has got to be when Nancy Wiseman, autism Mom, dressed down Dr. Yvette  Janvier. Janvier had been pontificating about how she “knew” autistic kids were perfectly healthy and she had never seen an ASD child with gut disease or immune problems in 20 years.  Pretty scary right? Anyways, Wiseman let her have it, sharing the heart-breaking misery her ASD daughter endured because she had undiagnosed PANDAS for years. Wiseman described her frustration as doctor after doctor missed the diagnosis and her daughter got progressively sicker, losing more skills, speech and abilities.

My second favorite moment was at the same meeting. A number of panelists were absent. Of course this is the norm for certain federal members. Stephen Shore, I love Shore, always gets right to the point, no talking just to ruminate aloud or hear himself speak. Dr. Insel asked why a panel member representing the aspergers community was absent. Immediately, Shore responded that this woman, “ had been knocked out by the flu shot.”  Shore told the panel that the poor woman was so sick post flu vaccine that she could not get out of bed or travel.  Sure enough, the woman’s  twitter account verified this information.  A grown woman, who probably weighs at least 120 pounds, received ONE vaccine one day and was “knocked out” by adverse effects.

Wow, does that ring any bells for anyone else? Imagine that! Most of our kids got 5 and 6 vaccines on ONE DAY when they weighed less than 20 pounds! Yet when parents have tried to broach this subject they are dismissed as hysterics “looking for something to blame.”

The look on all the committee members’ faces was priceless. The discomfort in the room seemed palatable and someone hurriedly changed the subject, naturally thwarting an open and honest discussion of adverse vaccine reactions. This despite the fact, that an IACC member had been completely incapacitated by one flu shot.

In November Peter Bell arranged for IACC to hear from a number of families affected by autism.  It was a great day. Parents spoke about their children’s struggles in the here and now and the paucity of treatment options. Many expressed frustration that the majority of autism research monies had been invested into long term genetic studies that have reaped no rewards for their kids.  Judy Chinitz shared her son’s Alex’s harrowing journey into autism  and severe gut disease to a stunned audience. Incredibly, it was the first time, IACC invited a Mom of a severely affected sick child to speak. Predictably, almost none of the IACC members went to speak to Judy afterwards.

In that same meeting Theresa Wrangham was first on the agenda for public comment. She sat down next to Dr. Insel and placed a beautiful 8x 10 framed photo of her daughter Rachel on the table. Theresa spoke about Rachel’s incredible battle to regain her health, speech and other skills and how she hopes that Moms and Dads no longer have to fight this fight own their own while the NIH ignores the needs of these children. Theresa also spoke about hope and all the innovative treatment inventions that IACC could be studying.

Finally, I just re- read the “What causes autism?” section of the IACC’s plan. At long last, 2 years in the making this work has been completed. It is written by bureaucrats for bureaucrats , devoid of community input except from the most archetypal quarters. We all need a laugh so here goes. IACC lists parents who are related to each other, specifically parents who are first and second cousins as a major causation factor.  This is so desperate it is actually funny.  What is this- “Deliverance?” How many of us are married to our cousin? .1%? Yes, yes it’s common in other parts of the world but NOT here. Then IACC cites more biased “don’t study vaccine safety” research from their pal and former vaccine company employee, Eric Fombonne, a man currently under investigation by MacGill University. 

Despite the fact autism is an extremely heterogeneous disease this earth is flat society advocates studying parental inbreeding as a possible cause of autism, not adjuvants, the effects of combination vaccines or a host of other important environmental factors.  Doesn’t that just say it all?

I would like to encourage everyone who can, to listen in on Monday’s IACC meeting. Dial in, post a comment, send them questions and then forward all that to your Congressperson and Senator’s office.  Be sure to mention that you and spouse are NOT cousins.

Katie Wright has two young boys. Her oldest son, Christian, is severely affected by autism. He developed normally; smiling, talking, walking; only to lose every skill and every word by the age of 2 and a half.  Upon the advice of medical professionals Katie and her husband were advised to pursue only high quality behavioral therapy, speech and OT for Christian. It had no meaningful impact on Christian until his parents sought help from DAN! doctors who treated the underlying causes of Christian's descent into autism. Christian has improved but still has far to go. He has Inflammatory Bowel Disease, the measles virus in his gut and an immune system akin to a late stage AIDS patient. Christian does not have a psychiatric disorder. Before autism, Katie Wright was the Clinical Director of Sexual Assault Crisis Center in Stamford Connecticut. Katie is proud to serve on the Boards of NAA and SafeMinds.

Here's how you can participate in the meeting:

The Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) will be holding a Full Committee Meeting on Tuesday, January 19, 2010 from 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM ET at the William H. Natcher Conference Center, NIH Campus, in Bethesda, MD.

The purpose of the IACC meeting is to discuss and vote on recommendations for the annual update of the IACC Strategic Plan for Autism Spectrum Disorders Research.  The meeting will also include a presentation on epigenetics and autism by Dr. Andrew Feinberg of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

The meeting will be open to the public and pre-registration is recommended. Seating will be limited to the room capacity and seats will be on a first come, first served basis, with expedited check-in for those who are pre-registered.  The meeting will be remotely accessible by videocast and conference call.  Members of the public who participate using the conference call phone number will be able to listen to the meeting, but will not be heard.

To access the conference call:
USA/Canada Phone Number: 888-577-8995
Access code: 1991506

Individuals who participate using this service and who need special assistance, such as captioning of the conference call or other reasonable accommodations, should submit a request to the contact person listed above at least seven days prior to the meeting.  If you experience any technical problems with the conference call, please-mail

The latest information about the meeting can be found at:

You received this announcement because you attended a previous meeting of the IACC or joined the IACC mailing list.  We apologize for duplicate notices. For more information on this meeting, or the IACC, please visit

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Please note: The meeting may end prior to or after 5:00 PM AT, depending on the needs of the committee.

If you wish to be removed from this list, please respond to this e-mail using the subject line “Remove from list”.



Cherry Sperlin Misra

Cousins marrying causes autism? That must be a nifty method for disposing of the Somalians. Now the CDC doesnt have to bother about that "cluster" anymore; they can just focus on the clusters that are due to "older parents"
Friends, we really must give them credit for their ingenuity. I thought they were going to blame viruses, cell phones or GM corn., but they were more clever than I thought.They should have no trouble eking out the next 20 years ,not facing the real causes of autism.
The writing is on the wall- If autism is to be understood or prevented- Its a do it yourself project.

Cathy Jameson

I remember a few years ago one doctor posed a question about consanguinity in our familiy. I jotted down a note to myself, "google weird sounding disease called..."

I all but fell out of my desk chair when I did get home from that appointment and went to look up that strange word. I love a good Google search but this one by far, had been the most incredible I'd had. Feeling a bit odd about why this doctor would ask such a thing, I thought maybe I should do some family root research and contacted my oldest living uncle on my father's side. I reasoned that my husband and I do have family that hail from similar counties in the old country, and heck, if I could "blame" all the negative aspects of autism on something, why not check into this consanguinity thingy.

After exhausting weeks of research, calling other older relatives on both sides of our extended families, we discovered there was no way on this green planet that my husband and I were related by blood.

While it was a good history lesson for me--to look up old baptismal records, marvel at passport photos of an earlier century and connect with my uncle (who continues to send me scientific journals and research since he knows Ronan needs more help than some medical people offer)--the biggest lesson I learned is that until some medical groups stop speculating about what causes autism and actually start to treat it, we parents are in for the long haul.


I Got a good chuckle about one of the members on the Asperger's committee could not make it because she was in bed from the flu VACCINE!!!! and they moved along quickly to another topic.

At this point a couple of sentences if that is true about inbreeding is just two sentences wasted.

Katie Wright

Luke, please. If that was not important to IACC then why if half the "What caused this?" section about inbreeding causing autism? On and on about familial autism and its causes. Merely discussing such inane hypotheses is an insult to autism families everywhere.

Do any of us seriously know cousins who married each other? Is cousin intermarriage an epidemic in the USA? No. Is this an issue remotely relevant to what 99% of autism families feel is a risk factor? No. Is this an issue that should be in IACC's top 1,000 causation concerns NO.

Why is IACC wasting time and valuable resources propagating such nonsense while ignoring the very real environmental factors families WANT researched?

The same IACC reports cites seasons causing autism? I mean, really? This is what I call junk science and our families are tired of paying for it.

Where is the discussion about what caused my son's regression autism? Where is the discussion about vaccine related regression? Citing Fombonne's work and the work of others with financial ties to the vaccine industry is beyond stupid and irresponsible. Where is the independent research? Better yet where are the families' interests in this atrocious document? Who wrote this? Was there any collaboration or consultation with parents of children like mine?


Katie Wright

These ridiculous comments appeared prominetly in IACC's report on advances. This embarrassing excuse for autism science can be found under the "what causes autism / risk factors" section .

When President Obama told the NIH that autism and cancer where his number one priorities, I certain he had innovative science in mind- not pathetic studies designed to obfuscate the real cases behind the autism epidemic. There is NO epidemic of cousins marrying each other in the USA.

Rather than highlighting the numerous advances in uncovering the environmental triggers behind this explosion of autism, IACC's report writes extensively about inbreeding and autism being caused by different seasons. Now that is what I call junk science.

Luke Tunyich

I am a little bit confused.

I spend some time on IACC website:

and only what I’ve found about cousins parents and autism are two sentences:

“The study examined 88 families with autistic children where parents were first or second cousins. Nineteen of the families studied had two or more cases of autism. Related parents are more likely to have genetic similarities, so studying them increases the likelihood of finding rare recessive genetic traits that are contributing to the family history of autism.”

cited from this study:

(29) Morrow, E. M., Yoo, S.Y., et al. (2008). "Identifying autism loci and genes by tracing recent shared ancestry." Science 321(5886): 218-23. Epub 2008/07/16.

I didn’t find anything that suggest that anyone on IAcC website state that “cousins marrying as major cause of autism”


What would we do with out you. Love your wit and insight?
Thanks for the laugh too, even if it did indicate a serious, twisted view of IAAC.

Jen and Katie never heard of Fombonne? What is he being investigated for?


According to Wikipedia: Inbreeding is a genetic term that refers to reproduction as a result of the mating of two animals which are genetically related to each other. If the relationship is a close one or it is practiced repeatedly, inbreeding can increase the chances of offspring being affected by recessive or deleterious traits Hmmm... Oh I get it! Here is the family tree that produces this "deleterious offspring"

The only "inbreeding" around here is occupational and amongst people who rotate from big pharma to goverment agency to various coordinating agencies.

Gimmie a break! They are occupational inbreds and they know it.


Nothing new with the "inbreeding" bit I'm afraid, in fact it's quite a classic and was already used as a "cause" when my mother was a nurse and supervisor in the children's unit of a psychiatric hospital in France between the early 60's and late 80's.

Then as now, any mention of a vaccine as a cause (the smallpox one was especially nasty in those days) was strongly dismissed as impossible.

Just another mom

Alison Singer is now a science expert?????! Seriously, what degree does she have?

Thanks Katie, you are a shining light.


So, is the increase in autism caused by more people marrying their cousins, or by more nerds traveling around the world to find other nerds to marry (Dr. Simon Baron-Cohen's theory)? Now we've got the "local" theory and the "international" theory.


I'm pissed off. Just wrote to Health Canada to ask what kind of surveillance is being done in Canada re. autism. Specifically, since most provinces have not decided to give the hep b series to infants (but some are), I hope to God they are collecting the data to compare groups, given what the CDC data shows in terms of the autism increase during increased uptake of hep b for those infants. Sad that you don't trust the people in charge to do their jobs...



That'a a pretty good question that I'd like to hear them address...but too bad we're not allowed to talk about the Amish and Autism.


Good heavens, Victorian literature is rife with romances between cousins and cases of hemophilia amongst royalty. But not autism.

Jake Crosby

No IACC, my parents are not cousins.

Anne McElroy Dachel

BTW...the Amish who don't have high rates of autism, do have higher rates of marrying blood relations.
Oxford Journals....American Journal of Epidemiology

Inbreeding in humans

Perhaps the IACC could explain this?
Anne Dachel

Julie Obradovic

Was this list of potential topics to study for "What causes Autism?" comprised before or after Insel's interview in which he stated there must be something (environmental) happening causing the huge increase in incidence? That the burden of proof is on those who believe otherwise?

Regardless, does the list reflect his belief of this at all? If so, how? And if not, why not? As the head of the IACC, if he truly believes the incidence increase is real, then he believes by default that it's not a purely genetic disorder, which means there is an environmental trigger.

Marrying your cousin is not an environmental trigger; it is a genetic explanation, and a pathetic one at that. Reminiscent of the old dads, depressed dads, and schizophrenic mothers angle.

So what gives? What are the environmental studies on the list? More pet shampoo? Rainfall? Television watching? Lack of talking to our children?

If they won't study vaccines, what are they studying? Seriously, what is all this "good science" (Alison Singer) on the agenda going to tell us?


This is an all time low...

Donna Kincanon

The IACC's plan intentionally served up a disguised insult aimed directly at our community because they knew their plan would be gone over with a fine-toothed comb and the insult would raise our ire. They're messing with us and no doubt laughing about it as they read our responses.

They're kicking their filth into the faces of suffering children. How proud they must be.


They can't find our unvaxed children because we are hiding them...

Yes, it's true I do not take my baby to the pediatrician. The pediatricians listen to themselves not the parent. They treat parents like we have no rights. My two older children were given vaccines I was not even aware of! It wasn't until I experienced a problem with a Rubella vaccine reaction that I realized my son had been poisoned by these things. I think of those 1st 4 years of his childhood wrought with unexplainable illnesses some of which are just like my symptoms/reaction and I'm angered! He was labeled by some members of family as a problem and we were to blame because we wouldn't hit him when he had an "episode." He was always ill and had the worst immune system. But he had all his vaccinations and if we didn't the only good local pediatrician would not see him as a patient! We were told that from the beginning. When I asked he why my Mason was always so sick, she said it was because white male babies are prone to have chronic ear infections. Hmmm. That's interesting.

I learned from my first 2 children. So I go to the doctor when you really should go. That is when there is ACTUAL NEED! I take her to urgent care or ER. They don't even want to know if your child was vaccinated "we just let the pediatricians handle that." Take note, maybe some real truth can be gleaned from this protocol. Like maybe **most** vaccines are unnecessary?! I have had a Rubella vaccine shot into me with the birth of every baby. 2000, 2004, 2009. So why do I have no antibodies??? It's about money. Nothing new, money over integrity.


About the problems of inbreeding, at least as seen among the European royal families--The question I have is how many of their health problems actually were due to access to the "best pharmaceuticals" and probably other environmental exposures of the day that were not commonly available to "the masses?"

The prominence of genetic research, as a "search for a cure" to many health problems, seems to me to be going the long-way-around the world to get to answers sitting in your backyard, maybe even already tugging at your elbow. With our children's health, though, it's like they will slowly, but "with all due diligence" and "compassion" canvas the globe, while trying to pretend they've looked where they already KNOW NOT to look.


Dr. Insel of the IACC dreams of the day when an Autism gene is found, a genetic test is created, and the first Autism abortion is performed.

Maurine Meleck

You are right, Katie. Best laugh I've had all week. I needed that. Thanks.
I think that most of the IACC members aren't even one generation away from their simian
relatives(actually I like monkeys better).

Anne McElroy Dachel

I would never have the patience and self-control to ever personally attend an IACC meeting.
Obviously, their mission is to look busy and do nothing while autism consumes a generation of

When autism finally bankrupts this country and when hundreds of thousands of never-before-seen autistic
adults flood social services, the worthlessness of the IACC will be evident to all.

Maybe then we'll honestly look for what's causing this disaster. Maybe when the damage done by an
unsafe and unchecked vaccine schedule is finally recognized, our children won't be seen as burdens,
but as victims---victims of a corrupt medical system that puts corporate interests above the health and safety
of children.

Maybe then someone will apologize for the destruction of so many lives.

Actually, this just happened in
the UK. SEE: Britain apologizes to thalidomide victims

I just hope it won't take 50 years for the vaccine victims.

Anne Dachel


Any studies on inbreeding in the IACC?


whoooa! Eric Fombonne under investigation at McGill University? I am positive he is associated with that Josephius guy (also from McGill) He (Joe Schwarcz) came to a "science cafe" presentation at my daughter's high school. When I asked him about vaccine safety and safety studies he became very heated about the whole thing and mentioned that Andy Wakefield had been run out of the country. I would love to hear more about this, too.


Sorry to horn in on this topic guys, but I just saw something on the Today Show that I think you guys would find really interesting. A 24 year old woman (funny how alot of these brain problems are happening with the most vaccinated generation yet!), suffered for a month with a "psychiatric condition" that she can not remember. She had at least one seizure. A top neuro doc was called in and found she had "anti-NMDR encephalopathy"? They even went on to say that many present psychiatric sufferers should be checked out for this. It is "new." I believe that this segment is covered by Dr. Nancy but she was nowhere to be seen on this. No big surprise, LOL! The woman is a journalist so this will get some attention. It seemed eerilie pertinant to all the brain inflammation and autism talk. Check it out. Sorry I didn't give link but it's on the Today Show website.

Craig Willoughby

Charlie said:
"With the gross failure of the IACC to listen to the parents and act accordingly, I now know how Ned Beatty's Deliverence character Bobby Trippe must of felt."

Agreed, Charlie.

"You sure do got a purdee mouth...."


"pal and former vaccine company employee, Eric Fombonne, a man currently under investigation by MacGill University"

I'd like to know more about this also. Could AofA do a follow-up?

Teresa Conrick

What a bunch of crazy bullshit. Thanks Katie for reporting on this absolutely insane group of people.

We are all watching them.

Cindy Keenan

Almost unbelievable. Listing breeding between first cousins as a possible causation factor strikes me as part of their attempt to portray us as ignorant, desperate, and too stupid to understand even the basics of genetics.

Thanks, Katie, for keeping us current on the IACC's continued antics.


Thanks for the laugh, Katie. What passes for science is so often just gruesome insult. Every genetic study which wades into racial differences invariably associates African heritage with mental illness. They do it over and over with a straight face. And for this decade's chosen targets, it disintegrates to locker room jokes. What "scientific" hypotheses will end up in IACC next? That autism parents are "ugly" and "smell bad"? I think mainstream autism science has aleady done the fat mama gag. Good Lord.


I agree with Dad Advocate. Autism Speaks helped fund research into a seizure condition com-morbid to many Autistics and this is helping my son If we want an org that is going to help fund vaccine research we need to form one and accept that that isn't going to be Autism Speaks. Let them have the genetic susceptability piece. Helping fund NVIC's vax/unvax study may be a good place to start. There is room for multiple orgs with multiple purposes.

As for the IACC: IMO there work amounts to nothing but a cruel joke.

Darian (nickname)

First of all, the title of this gave me a good chuckle first thing in the morning after a rather hazardous start, so thank you! :)

If you look at the Bible and are a Christian, we are all related anyway, because we all come from Adam and Eve. Hey! Maybe that's why there is autism!?! *laughing so hard now my sides hurt*

Come on folks, is this the best you can do? You couldn't even come up with a plausible lie? Whatever happened to the smooth talkers? Did they go underground?

Ok enough of my sarcasm. I'm saying if you can't even come up with an intelliegent argument against us, then perhaps there insn't one and just maybe, God forbid, WE ARE RIGHT!!

And maybe you should start doing your research, like you should have done a long time ago!!

On another note, Peter Bell is coming to Columbia MO soon! If I manage to get a ride I might get to go! SCORE!


Wow!!! That just made me laugh out loud. Are the members of the IACC really this dumb. I can't stop shaking my head. Unreal!!!

Conflict Investigatress

I would love to know much more about this statement:

Then IACC cites more biased “don’t study vaccine safety” research from their pal and former vaccine company employee, Eric Fombonne, a man currently under investigation by MacGill University.

I'm so glad to hear he is being investigated.

Does anyone have any link to this matter? I read this guy's testimony in the Vaccine Court and I have never disliked anyone more, and just from thier words in print. He said (paraphrasing) that there was a greater chance of the earth being at the exact center of the universe than vaccines having anything to do with autism causation.


Investigate away!

Wade Rankin

The IACC was supposed to be the crown jewel of the (Pretend to be) Combatting Autism Act. It was going to be the table where we would get our seat. Some in our community, realizing our seat would be at the kiddie's table, withdrew their support of the CAA. This post shows how right they were.

Keep shedding light on this, Ms. Wright. And thanks to all who are there, reminding the bureaucrats that we're here, and we aren't going away.


Johns Hopkins Center for the Epigenetics of Common Human Disease receives $16.8 million NIH grant

Craig Willoughby

I can't wait to see how the ND crowd takes this news. Since the majority of them think that the IACC is the best thing since sliced bread, I wonder how they are going to take this blatant insult.

Jenny W

I am sitting here with my jaw hanging open and no sound coming out --and that is my comment.


With the gross failure of the IACC to listen to the parents and act accordingly, I now know how Ned Beatty's Deliverence character Bobby Trippe must of felt.

Not a kissing cousin

Could be worse, I was asked by I think his name was Dr. Wang at Johns Hopkins if my husband and I were brother and sister. I think he even got a grant from Autism Speaks, imagine that.

I guess the drunk mothers, old fathers and tv causing autism didn't pan out. Or maybe they are just doing more psy ops on the parents to really demean us in hopes that parents will give up on the whole vaccine thing. That is their point afterall. Didn't work, my husband and I both got a good laugh at their desperation.

My only question for the members of the IACC, what does it do to your soul to take part in such evil.


Im interested in what Dr. Andrew Feinberg of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine has to say. He is supposedly the shiznet when it comes to epigenetics.

"An epigenetic trait is a stably inherited phenotype resulting from changes in a chromosome without alterations in the DNA sequence."

"The field of epigenetics has … grown swiftly over the past several years, extending well beyond an initial discovery phase and identification of fundamental non-genetic and chromatin-based regulatory mechanisms,"

Whatever that means.

In an interview found here

QUESTION: Do any environmental pollutants alter epigenetic "settings"?

FIENBERG ANSWERS: Most things that cause DNA mutations, that have been also tested epigenetically, seem to affect the epigenome as well.

QUESTION: Are there any cancer treatments in use today that work at the epigenetic level?

FIENBERG ANSWERS: Yes, there are drugs that alter DNA methylation or histone modification.

QUESTION: Do people actually change their epigenetic methylation levels by taking vitamin supplements?

FIENBERG ANSWERS: Not studied but should be.


Of course One of the molecules produced during methylation is glutathione, a primary detoxifier of the body.

"We do know that people have genetic susceptibilities to mercury toxicity because they don't produce enough of a substance called glutathione, a natural, sulfur-based protein that binds with heavy metals ... and helps us to eliminate toxins from our systems." DAVID KIRBY

"So it could be heavy metals in the environment or heavy metals in vaccines," he said. "It could be live viruses in the environment or live viruses in vaccines. It could be a fever caused by a natural disorder, or it could be a fever caused by vaccines. In each case, it produces what we call autism." DAVID KIRBY

Then there is this, a twin study being conducted by Feinberg. (Notice it is funded by the Department of Defense) Following copied and pasted in it's entirety.

While environmental factors likely play an important role in the development and evolution of autism, their specific mechanism and, most importantly, their gene targets are unknown. We intend to study mechanisms by which the environment influences autism by studies in the exciting new field of epigenetics that links genes, environment, and disease. We hypothesize that epigenetic abnormalities contribute to the etiology of autism. To test our hypothesis, we will study identical (monozygotic) twins concordant or discordant for autism spectrum disorder.

Please contact:
Marie Andachter at 443-923-7716, or,
Partnering P.I.'s Dr. Walter Kaufmann, Kennedy Krieger Institute and Dr. Andrew Feinberg, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine... See More

This study has been approved by the Johns Hopkins Institutional Review Board (NA_00025760) and is sponsored by the Department of Defense, Autism Research Program.


I bet if I had married my first cousin and did not vaccinate - my daughter would be fine. Look at how often this did happen throughout history and autism just started appearing in the 1940's? Oh wait I forgot they are all there we are just better at diagnosing now. These people are just grasping at straws. What a waste of tax dollars and our kids' time. The way this country is handling the autism epidemic makes the handling of Katrina look good - yet no one but us seems to give a damn. Heck of a job Brownie I mean Insel.


Married to your cousin is causation!!!???

Excuse me but I grew up at the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in North GA one of the prime areas for the "married your cousin" jokes. All my relatives are from the Appalachian region all the way back to the revolutionary war.

GUESS WHAT! I never actually knew a married couple who were cousins. I have the genealogy on almost all side of my family and, I admit, way back in the late 1700's two of my long distant aunts and uncles were cousins. MAYBE that explains my daughters regression!

GOOD GRIEF! They supposedly can't find enough unvaccinated children for a vax/unvax study but cousins marrying can explain some degree of this outrageous rise in autism? I think cousins who've married MIGHT even be more difficult to find than adults with autism. Sooo right Katie...LAUGHABLE and ABSURD!


There's been no shortage of criticism leveled at Autism Speaks in our community. I have my issues too but there is very little recognition of the hugely important things people like Bell are doing to bring scale and leverage to issues like comorbid GI conditions, adult services, etc. In public policy, leverage really matters. Big time. Smaller groups get comforting words but no action. Whether you agree or disagree with Bell and AS, ASA, GR, TACA, ASAN or any other group overall, on those issues in our community where there is broad agreement (and there are many), I think that closing ranks and supporting a larger, concentrated effort is the rational choice. It's a darn shame that too many groups cannot agree to disagree on some things and work together on others (Ari? Are you listening?). Not doing so holds back progress for all.


My family tree isn't even in the same orchard as my wife's. Maybe they are talking about the child's relationship to the parents. My son and I are related. A direct descendant, perhaps all children who have autism are related to their parents. Come to think of it he is related to my cousins.


Katie - it is a comfort to know that you are watching and reporting on all of this. Thank you very much.

Luke Tunyich

Genetics hype is responsible for the high rate of divorce among the parents of children affected with autism.

Genetics research is the waste of time and money and makes misery far more badly than it should be.

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