No, Jerry, You Don’t Have Autism.
I’ve been an autism advocate and activist for 10 years. By the mainstream media’s account, I’m on the wrong side of history. You see I’m one of “those” parents. One of “those” who brought a perfectly healthy baby girl into this world only to watch her descend into a physical hell of repeated and chronic illness followed by developmental delays that eventually resulted in an autism diagnosis.
I’m one of “those” parents who did the relentless research and put the pieces together and had the medical testing done that proved her autism wasn’t even kind of sort of genetic. It is epigenetic, a fancy word for environmentally caused. And it is iatrogenic, another fancy word for medically caused.
Here’s all you really need to know about the controversy. The medical industrial complex says my husband and I caused her autism. We know they did. And because they have just a teensy bit more power, influence, money and control over the messaging than I do from my keyboard, well, it’s fair to say they are winning. Jerry Seinfeld is proof.
It’s not uncommon to feel punched in the gut when you are a parent like me, pretty much on a daily basis. Actually, sometimes on an hourly basis. No one, as far as I can tell, is bullied nearly as much as a parent of a medically injured child.
According to 99% of what gets reported, we’re dangerous “cranks” (whatever that stupid word means that nobody ever uses except one guy) who must be stopped before the world explodes in infectious disease because of us. We’re reckless, irresponsible, flat-earth-conspiracy-theorists who can’t accept that we have:
A) Bad Genes
B) Bad parenting skills
C) Bad kids
D) Bad thinking and reasoning skills
E) Bad souls
And this is basically what gets reported or blogged about on an average Tuesday.
Going after Jenny McCarthy, who had the guts to be the spokesperson for thousands of parents like me, has become a sport. Slandering her, taking her words out of context, and calling her a liar is simply accepted as good journalism these days. Someone just managed to even make a book out of it. Gross.
There are Facebook sites that exist solely for the purpose of internet trolls who make up fake profiles and friend parents of injured children only to then take screen shots and pictures of their children, then share them on their wall and make fun of them. Facebook allows it.
There are the incessant articles from outlets around the globe that just get it wrong. Every. Single. Day. Like the one last week, where a pediatrician seriously had the gall to say ethyl mercury is “natural mercury” that is totally safe. I could write a thesis about why that statement is so wrong and so dangerous on so many levels, and yet, not a single person responsible for that reporting even checked if that was kind of true.
And lest we forget about the tragedies of autism that saturate my newsfeed on a daily basis. The epidemic of missing and abused children. The parents who lose their minds and toss their kids off bridges. My friends whose children are seizing so often and so badly that they are afraid their children will die. The friend whose child just did die.
In my own life, autism has changed everything about who I am. Everything. The life I knew a little over ten years ago has ceased to exist. Friendships have changed. Priorities have changed. My perspective on the world and the people I thought I could trust have changed. It’s hard to put into words the 180-degree turn it made me take.
And it’s equally hard to put into words the pain, grief, trauma, fear, anxiety, worry, and heartbreak it brought. Watching your child slip away from you, and not be able to express to you where it hurts or why is an experience no parent should ever, ever have to endure.
Watching it happen and having a medical community that is not only completely ignorant about what to do to help, but also responsible for it happening in the first place, and then arrogant enough to not take responsibility but actually put it on you? That’s…well, that’s a special kind of hell. I don’t even know what that is. Other than it is the reality for thousands upon thousands upon thousands of parents right now as I type this.
And that is why I continue to speak out, seek justice, and won’t back down from the truth. To borrow from my friend Eric Gladen, “The public needs to see what’s happened here, because the public will be the ones to drive change.” I spend a good portion of my life trying to make that happen.
So it came kind of as a shock at first the gut wrenching, visceral response I had to Jerry Seinfeld’s speculation that he is on the autism spectrum. I rarely, if ever, swear on my social media sites or in writing. I let an “F” bomb fly in the first sentence.
I was insulted and angry in a way that I haven’t been in a long time. When you are bullied on a daily basis, you build up a tolerance to the non-sense and hatred because you have to. You learn to let it roll off you to the greatest extent possible, and within a few years, most of it does…even though it still leaves you a little breathless every time.
But this? This was different. I was angry.
Jerry Seinfeld? JERRY SEINFELD HAS AUTISM?! Are you kidding me?!
Everything about that idea ripped through me like a knife. It lacerated me. It undermined everything that my child and our family suffered and lost and experienced and made it into a joke, no pun intended.
JERRY SEINFELD HAS AUTISM?!
I thought about the little boy who had just been tossed off the bridge by his mother. I thought about Alex, who had been stabbed to death by his. I thought about the little boy who just died from having a seizure in the bathtub and drowning.
I thought about Avonte, who wandered from school, unable to ask for help or know where he was going, and ended up dead. I thought about the boy whom had feces dumped on him in an ice bucket challenge turned evil.
I thought about sitting in the doctor’s office being told I should “pay more attention” to my child and that “sometimes when we’re disappointed in our children they manifest that disappointment as a delay”.
I thought about the IEP meeting I have coming up, the one where we will transition to high school, and all of the pain that will entail, as we have to discuss alternatives to the college experience that we dreamed she would have.
I thought about my friends and their children, many of who have NEVER EVEN HEARD THEIR CHILD’S VOICE…and their child is 20.
I thought about the students I had in the last 10 years of my 20 year career who had high functioning autism, and that even though they were amazing, and wonderful, and kind, and smart, struggled so much just to even be able to sit in class some days. A pencil tapping, a buzzing fluorescent light bulb, the sensation of their sleeve while they tried to write…all of it making them anxious and overwhelmed…and the serious help these VERY independent young people still needed.
JERRY SEINFELD HAS AUTISM?!
I grew outraged. I was offended on a level I hadn’t experienced. It made a mockery out of these children and their lives. And worse, it caused so much harm. It played right into the mainstream non-sense that autism has always been around, it’s always been at the current levels, that it’s a gift, that it’s nothing to worry about, and it’s a fun quirky disorder that makes you a genius.
Now, apparently, it makes you a comic genius too. The disorder that’s rooted in the inability to read social cues, nuance, and relate to others on an emotional level apparently has exceptions. For arguably the most brilliant man ever to do just that somehow had autism at the exact same time. Remarkable.
My heart continued to beat out of my chest as the day went on. Not only was he saying that he was very broadly on the spectrum, in his own retrospective self-diagnostic way, but the media wasn’t challenging him! They loved it!
Not one person said, “Hey, um, Jerry…I get what you’re saying about feeling socially awkward, but autism has very specific criteria that has to be met. Do you think it’s irresponsible to self-diagnose like this?”
Nope. They didn’t care. Another feel-good-autism story for the books. Nothing to see here, folks. Move along. Autism is great. See!
JERRY SEINFELD HAS AUTISM!
And it got worse. Within a day stories were saying we autism advocates were thrilled. Autism Speaks posted it on their Facebook page. Other self-advocates were virtually high-fiving.
Thrilled? I thought astounded. Are you kidding me? What planet are we on?!
Does nobody get what just happened? Seinfeld just did for autism what Einstein did. He quite possibly just set it back decades. DECADES! I couldn’t count the amount of people, myself included, who were told the stupid, ridiculous story about Einstein not talking until he was 4. Do people have any idea how harmful that story is? Delaying a child getting help until they are 4 because of a story that one man supposedly didn’t talk until then? ARRGGHHH!!
And now it will be Seinfeld parents hear about.
“Oh, I heard Jerry Seinfeld has that! Oh, lucky you! Maybe he’ll be hilarious!”
“Why would that mother toss her kid off that bridge? Isn’t autism what Seinfeld has? He’s so funny that guy!”
“Well, of course they get lost, these kids. Remember when Seinfeld lost his car in the parking garage?”
“Oh, isn’t that the thing Seinfeld had? Look at how successful he was! You should consider yourself blessed!”
Ah, yes, it’s such a blessing. Such a blessing that parents are having psychotic breaks and killing their kids. Such a blessing to watch a child in diapers bang his head against the wall. Such a blessing to not have any resources for your child after they age out of the school system because those resources don’t exist.
Yes, such a blessing this autism. One big, hilarious, genius blessing.
I beg of anyone reading this right now to hear me loud and clear.
JERRY SEINFELD DOES NOT HAVE AUTISM.
Being socially awkward, taking things literally, and having a hard time with nuance makes you no more autistic than grabbing an automatic weapon and opening fire on a school. In every possible way that society could screw up what the real experience of autism is like, it manages to do so. It takes a character like Sheldon on the Big Bang Theory and makes him the poster child for the disorder, even though that kind of autism is the kind that at best 20% of kids actually have, even less of whom has that kind of intelligence.
It refuses to take to task the very industrial complex accused of causing the problem and instead, eats up their propaganda without an ounce of suspicion. It uses a man who has never treated a single child with autism as the world’s expert on it, the same man who made millions off of the very product parents claim caused their child’s condition, and it doesn’t think twice about how stupid that is.
On every level that our media could abandon our children, it has managed to do so. It has done such a good job at distorting the disorder and the epidemic, that it has now convinced celebrities and others that it is perfectly acceptable to self-diagnose and speculate publicly that they have a condition they don’t even kind of have. And it applauds them for it.
I like Jerry Seinfeld. Who doesn’t? I have watched the re-runs of his sitcom for years and still do. I loved that he was one of the few comedians who didn’t resort to swearing and off-color humor as a way to tell jokes. He just found the hilarity in life itself.
And that my friends, it what is making this such a very hard pill to swallow. Finding the hilarity in life is exactly what autism takes away from an affected person, and for a long time, from the affected families.
Please Jerry, I beg you. Clarify your statement. Hold the media accountable. Tell the world you were taken way out of context. For if you don’t, I’m afraid there will be absolutely nothing funny, or good, about what you just did. In fact, for my child and our family, it’s down right hurtful.
Julie Obradovic is Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.
Aerobic metabolism is accomplished by mitochondria. Mitochondria are bacteria-like, and some people believe they are remnant of a primeval symbiotic infection. They are susceptible to damage by antibiotics and other drugs that disrupt aerobic enzyme activity. Areas of the brain with highest aerobic metabolism, like nuclei in the auditory pathway and the basal ganglia, are most vulnerable to mitochondrial poisons.
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 18, 2014 at 08:23 AM
If you go to amazon.com and search for books, put in inferior colliculus, and my 6 ebooks show up. Click on the cover image of Book 1, then click look inside and scroll down (or navigate with the arrows). Figures 1-1 and 1-2 show blood flow in the brain. Figure 1-2 is a functional MRI and shows how brightly the inferior colliculi stand out, as two tiny yellow dots. They are very small, and have so far not been found exciting objects of brain research.
High metabolic activity makes the inferior colliculi vulnerable to toxic damage at any stage of life. Below I suggested looking at the article by Morgan et al. (2004), in which they happened to see damage in the “posterior” (inferior) colliculi, and commented that this is not an area of the brain normally looked at in toxicology research. I hope the importance of looking at these tiny nuclei in the auditory pathway will soon be recognized. They may function like a master-chip for auditory signal multiplexing.
Are we off-topic for Jerry Seinfeld? How much drinking and drugging has he done? Having fully developed language, regression will look different, maybe more like Alzheimers?
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 18, 2014 at 08:20 AM
Roger, I am interested in your idea of regressive autism being either mito or autoimmune. What would be the signs and symptoms for each and which treatment might work best for each?
Posted by: AutismGoAway | November 18, 2014 at 06:28 AM
Greg,I think most regressive autism is either autoimmune or mitochondrial or in nature.The two are very different in nature.
Both mitochondrial disease and autoimmune disease can be inherited or acquired.I do think in a lot of kids who regress after vaccines,there is a genuine family history of autoimmune disease that neither the families,or the doctors giving the vaccines have not taken into account.
But not all families.
I know from my family there is a very long history of genetic problems related to MTHFR and folate metabolism,but not mitochondrial disease.I have the full compliment of Severe MTHR Deficiency,and Cerebral Folate Deficiency with folate receptor autoantibodies.Every mitochondrial test I have had so far points to the type of acquired mitochondrial disease Dr. Frye writes about here. http://www.nature.com/tp/journal/v3/n1/full/tp2012143a.html
I saw Dr. Frye a few months ago,I am pretty sure I was his first adult patient.When I saw him,I asked if this acquired mito was acquired before or after birth.He said we simply don't know yet.
Posted by: Roger Kulp | November 17, 2014 at 11:07 PM
Thanks again for your response. You seem to be focusing on causual factors at birth. Do you suppose that brain damage at birth could lead to regressive autism? Also, it has been said how difficult it is to find such damage with Mr is but functional MRIs tell a diffetnt story. Can we not then use these tests as diagnostic tools?
Posted by: Greg | November 17, 2014 at 12:14 PM
The basal ganglia are also subcortical sites of high aerobic metabolism, almost as high as nuclei in the auditory pathway. The citations you provided yesterday were very interesting. Thank you.
I could be wrong. That’s why back-and-forth conversation is so useful. But compromise of aerobic metabolism should be considered as a “final common pathway” in all etiological factors that cause brain damage underlying autism.
I think the brain damage in autism should be compared with that in kernicterus, which is caused by bilirubin injury of the basal ganglia and nuclei of the auditory pathway. Also, Wernicke’s encephalopathy (associated with alcohol intoxication, poisons, thiamine deficiency, and maybe folate deficiency too) includes damage of brainstem sites, including the auditory system.
There is so much more to learn, and the brain must be the focus of conditions like autism, which has so many seemingly different causes. How do all these causes affect the brain???
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 15, 2014 at 07:09 PM
Thanks for your questions. Back and forth conversation is badly needed in trying to understand the autism epidemic. Response from the medical establishment is to point to some sort of “evidence” and expect that to be accepted without further questioning.
Brain damage is rarely as highly visible as in the pictures in Windle’s Scientific American article, and the story of how he finally located that damage should have been published as well. The purpose of his research with monkeys was to provide an animal model of cerebral palsy. Cerebral palsy was not what they got by preventing the onset of respiration at birth.
RE Myers (Am J Obstet Gynecol. 1972, 112:246) reported on experiments in which prolonged partial hypoxia near the time of birth did produce cerebral palsy.
The difference reflects the biochemistry of respiration, which is provided by the hemoglobin molecule. Hemoglobin releases oxygen in exchange for carbon dioxide, the major end product of respiration. If oxygen is in short supply (during a period of hypoxia), the metabolically most active sites in the brain (like nuclei in the auditory system) will receive oxygen, at the expense of metabolically less active areas like the cerebral cortex.
If oxygen is totally cutoff, as in asphyxia, the auditory nuclei will be damaged, and the infant will die if asphyxia lasts more than 6 to 8 minutes. Nearly 40 years ago I suggested this infrequent possibility as a possible cause of the infrequent condition of autism (N Simon, Arch Gen Psychiat 1975; 32:1439-46).
Regressive autism is most likely the result of toxic injury. Toxic substances disrupt aerobic metabolism, and most severely in nuclei of the auditory pathway. However, see the paper by
DL Morgan et al. (Toxicol Appl Pharmacol 2004;200:131). They reported toxic damage in the “posterior” colliculi, and pointed out that this small area of the brain is rarely looked at in research on toxic injury of the brain.
For more summaries on toxic injury go to PubMed and lookup: (1) bertoni deoxyglucose lead, (2) vingan deoxyglucose, (3) soman deoxyglucose, (4) scremin soman.
Also lookup: (1) cavanagh harding leigh, (2) cavanagh alpha-chlorohydrin, (3) cavanagh methyl bromide, (4) morgan dl colliculus, (5) oyanagi colliculus, (6) husain k colliculus, (7) asphyxia colliculus, (8) thomson wernicke 1881.
Lookup the seminal paper by Seymour Kety, free online at:
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 15, 2014 at 07:06 PM
There is probably involvement of the basal ganglia in all types of autism,only the mechanism is different.There are many different types of autism,even if they can all have a similar presentation.
From what I have learned both from reading the medical literature,and from asking a lot of questions of parents,here and elsewhere,there seem to be two very different types of regressive autism.The autoimmune type and the mitochondrial type.One big difference may be in mitochondrial disease there are multiple regressions,and in autoimmune autism,there may be only one regression.The autoimmune type has only recently been discovered,and I do think the maternal antibodies recently discovered play a role in some cases of regressive autism,the mothers passing the autoantibodies onto the babies.Vaccinces being the trigger to set off damage done in the womb.
Posted by: Roger Kulp | November 15, 2014 at 04:44 PM
Thanks so much for your response and very helpful info. It appears though that you are very focused on etiology at birth, but what about regressive autism? If autism truly corresponds to brain structural damage wouldn't this be a true smoking gun in that it could readily be proven? Do you not consider where regressive autism is concerned the biochemical theory is better?
Posted by: Greg | November 15, 2014 at 03:29 PM
Greg, The article in Haaretz about research at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25316335 is another inadvertent step backwards. I was able to download the full article (by Haar S et al.), which reviews several reports of brain pathology in autism.
For me, omission of the research of Kulesza and Lukose was disappointing. Based on a report by Rodier (also omitted), Kulesza and Lukose looked at the superior olive (SO) in the brains of 9 autistic people, and found abnormalities. The SO was their region of interest (ROI), and brain tissue from this area was obtained from the Harvard Brain Bank (where the freezer later broke down).
In PubMed lookup: Kulesza Lukose. Next they exposed rats to valproic acid during gestation and found the same abnormalities in the superior olive.
The superior olive is a nucleus in the brainstem auditory pathway, with blood flow and aerobic metabolism just slightly less than in the inferior colliculus. Damage of the inferior colliculus by asphyxia at birth was reported by WF Windle in the Oct 1969 issue of the Scientific American.
As mother of a child with hearing as well as language problems, Windle’s article was an immediate “Aha” moment for me. I have tried for more than 4 decades now to point out Windle’s finding. See http://iacc.hhs.gov/events/2008/slides_eileen_simon_112108.pdf .
Haar et al. state: “It may be more reasonable to search for subgroups of ASD individuals with more homogeneous etiologies.” Yes, and no etiology has been reported more than complications at birth. I started following AOA because mercury, lead, and toxic chemicals (as well as anoxia) cause damage in the inferior colliculus.
It is not enough to keep screaming about vaccines and mercury without describing exactly how they might affect systems in the brain. I will keep trying. Vaccines and many other drugs have not been well enough tested for neurotoxicity, but damage to nuclei of the auditory system has been described in several neurotoxicology reports.
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 14, 2014 at 02:26 PM
Yes,in some cases,the behavior problems in autism,as well as the seizures,are related to structural changes in the basal ganglia.This is well documented.Here are two random articles I pulled up.
Basal ganglia are also greatly effected by cerebral folate deficiency,but here the damage can be treated,and eventually reversed. http://biopku.org/pdf/blau_hansen.pdf
Posted by: Roger Kulp | November 14, 2014 at 11:03 AM
You are saying that there is structural damage to the autistic brain even though the study is saying that it's not global where MRI may readily discern the damage when compared to neurotypicals. Are you then in agreement with the authors that it may be more localized damage depending on the subset of autism, or do you feel the study is suspect?
Posted by: Greg | November 14, 2014 at 08:58 AM
Cherry, neurological signs are associated with structures in the brain. Aphasia results from damage in the language areas of the frontal or temporal lobes, or their connecting circuits. Repetitive motor movements have long been associated with damage of the basal ganglia. Level of consciousness (LOC) is a standard measure of severity of neurologic injury.
The idea of non-localized biochemical dysfunction in neurons everywhere is the basis of muddled ideas about brain injury in autism.
Language disorder in autism results from maturational failure of the frontal and temporal lobes. The resulting “underconnectivity” is visible in fMRI scans. Basal ganglia damage leads to wide-swinging arm movements (athetosis) and wiggling of the hands (chorea) which you no doubt have observed in children in your nursery school. Diminished LOC in autism is euphemistically described as social phobia etc.
Biochemistry in the brain is associated with aerobic activity. Aerobic activity is highest in nuclei of the brainstem auditory pathway. These are processing centers for environmental sounds. They also guide postnatal maturation of the language areas. Nuclei in the auditory pathway are prominent sites of damage by mercury, lead, toxic chemicals, and anoxia.
The auditory system is the alerting system of the brain. Metabolic activity remains high even during sleep. Auditory nuclei in the midbrain tectum have been suggested as the locus of the seat of consciousness.
In PubMed lookup: conscious state tectum. Wow. Look at what comes up first, an article on Wernicke encephalopathy. For decades I have tried to point out that autism may be a form of Wernicke encephalopathy. Thanks, Cherry. I hope to find time soon to peruse some of these articles on the conscious state. Biochemical functioning of the brain is related to specific brain structures.
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 14, 2014 at 07:38 AM
"the answers of autism do not lie in structure of the brain"
Sorry if you thought I claimed they did, but I have met several doctors online who have argued that children with regressive autism have brains that are structurally abnormal, citing Scientific Research, and they used abnormal brain anatomy to explain autism, just as Dr Paul Offit did in his book. These small studies have been trumpeted as proof that children with regressive autism were not normal from birth as parents claimed, and that parents of such children missed the early signs. This new research shows that Paul Offit and other doctors were wrong. Brains of most autistic people are not structurally abnormal. However, I'm sure functional MRIs would tell a different story.
I firmly believe that my son's regression was caused by vaccines, but there are other known causes.
The problem with any treatment for autism is that not everyone with the diagnosis benefits from them. A person with agenesis of the corpus callosum, for instance, may not benefit at all from chelation because the underlying cause of the symptoms is not heavy metal poisoning. On the subject of Alzheimers, a relative of mine has Vascular Dementia which has exactly the same symptoms as Alzheimers but has a different cause.
I think at this point in time it would be very difficult if not impossible to do any reliable autism science when people with "ASD" are so vastly different from one another. Perhaps this is one reason why the science doesn't appear to be making any headway. As Eileen Nicole said, "Brain impairments in autism should have been understood decades ago". If they had been doing the right kind of brain research, as I believe they were before the epidemic started, the mystery may very well have been solved by now. Instead, they concentrated their efforts on genetics, and so far have ignored the subgroup of children with regression.
I feel there is something very wrong with the way autism is diagnosed today when some parents can claim. on the Internet anyway, that their children have great eye-contact, can read body language, have lots of friends, and are straight A students, and when autistic adults tell us they have successful careers, and say they pass for normal. This is not the kind of autism I know.
When my adult son participated in a university study of Aspergers/HFA a few years ago, the researcher told me she had to turn a dozen or so volunteers away because they were self-diagnosed. How many of them I wonder have since managed to get a diagnosis from a friendly psychologist who overlooks the part about autism being a disability, and causing significant impairments in everyday life? But then, I see Autism Speaks doesn't use the word "significant" or even "impairment" any more but "difficulties", and finds no problem welcoming Jerry Seinfeld into the fold. According to psychologist Dr. Jeffrey Gardere, "Jerry Seinfeld is absolutely courageous" for coming out. I suspect that the autism industry is drumming up business. To them, the more the merrier. Why would they bother to solve the autism puzzle or find a cure when either one would put them out of business? All this does absolutely nothing to help children and adults whose symptoms are truly disabling.
Posted by: ATSC | November 14, 2014 at 05:49 AM
ask the mum of a severely autistic son if she thinks Jerry Seinfeld's flippant comment represent true autism...
Posted by: aspier | November 14, 2014 at 01:47 AM
To Greg, ATSC and others, most of the answers of autism do not lie in structure of the brain, but in the biochemical functioning of the brain. You can see what mercury toxicologists such as Dr. Boyd Haley and Chris Shade PhD say about this. Dr. Shade does not discuss autism much, but he gives an occasional clue. He specializes in treating adults who have mercury toxicity,usually from fish and dental amalgams. Funny- Its ok for mercury to cause toxicity in adults via dental work and fish, but vaccines with mercury are "safe" for tiny babies.
Because autism operates largely at the chemical level- you cannot expect to "see" anything on an MRI . The same is true for Alzheimers Disease , which is suspected by many to be simply "Autism of the Elderly " (Oh, sorry, no scratch that out- I forgot- Alzheimers is the "Most Stubborn Disease" of unknown origin- Much much more difficult to figure out Alzheimers than to put a spaceship on a comet)
On top of the original cause, the mercury in the brain, there is damage inside of cells, which is difficult to repair because most of the antioxidants we have do not penetrate cell wall. Dr. Haley made a compound for this , named OSR, Many parents of autistic kids found this helped their kids, but the government closed that avenue of treatment down.
The mercury toxicologists know very well what they think causes autism, but they are excluded and isolated and of course, finally "discredited"
Nevertheless, I feel that we need to keep challenging all authorities and media persons to ask mercury toxicologists if putting mercury into babies might cause autism All persons who try to delay distract and deny the truth of autism should be told sharply "What are you not calling the mercury toxicologists?"
Posted by: Cherry Sperlin Misra | November 13, 2014 at 06:19 PM
Just now listening to Dr. Suzanne Humphrie's lectures on Youtube. In this second one, she talks about what can happen in utero to cause autism. Actually, I'd listen to the series in sequence, but if you don't have the time, see the second.
At about the 4 minute mark, she explains vaccines and autoimmunity. At the 23:38 minute mark, she talks about autism.
Posted by: Linda1 | November 13, 2014 at 02:56 PM
Hello Nancy, I hear you. My son is also an environmental case with unfortunate vaccines thrown in the contaminated cocktail. He is the 1:10,000 ratio? from 1980. I was pregnant downwind of a coal-fired paper mill(mercury pollution).I lived near a paper forest(herbicides) and ate local fish from the area(mercury polluted waters.) Then he got vaccines including Thimerosal and MMR after he was born. At some point in his life his brain was damaged neurologically from all the neurotoxins. He also suffered GI issues for over 2 decades. It is a miracle he is alive and not more severe than he is. I have seen early studies about the effect of pulp mills on local fish (check the references in this study, some are from the 1970's!)http://www.academicjournals.org/article/article1380007747_Mishra%20et%20al.pdf EPA is another agency that is bought. Autism is clearly manmade. What other childhood disorders and cancers have been generated by the Industrial Age? We have to act now to stop the poisoning of our children. My fear is that these mercury long-lasting light-bulbs will be the next autism epidemic among future pregnant Moms.
Posted by: aspiesmo | November 13, 2014 at 12:52 PM
My autistic son is 52. I have spent the past 50 years researching the cause of his autism. He suffered severe head injury and anoxia at birth. He was born physically perfect, but postnatal maturation of the language areas did not proceed normally.
Functional MRI has revealed abnormalities in the brain. Lookup: autism underconnectivity in PubMed. I see 60 citations there this morning.
Repetitive movements should long ago have been recognized as the result of injury to the basal ganglia. Also “social obliviousness” should long ago have been recognized as a severely diminished level of consciousness (LOC). It is sickening that euphemist attempts to explain autism are taken seriously enough that a few people want to apply this “diagnosis” to themselves.
Brain impairments in autism should have been understood decades ago. The obstetric protocol to clamp the umbilical cord immediately after birth should never have been adopted. The dangers of induced labor, vitamin K and hepB injections should also long ago have been recognized as exacerbations of injury caused by anoxia at birth.
Posted by: Eileen Nicole Simon | November 13, 2014 at 07:41 AM
But there are cases like my daughter's out there and trust me, they do not resemble Jerry Seinfeld. 'Environmental' needs to go beyond vaccines. Please don't discount children who were not vaccine injured. We love our children too.
Oh give me a break!
Posted by: Barry | November 13, 2014 at 07:24 AM
Greg, I'm sorry I wouldn't know. If you'd like to contact Prof Gerry Leisman, the author of the comment, here's a link to his site and email address:
I also found this paper which I haven't had a chance to read yet that might tell us something:
Melillo R, Leisman G.(2009)
Autistic spectrum disorders as functional disconnection syndrome.Rev Neurosci.20(2):111-31
Posted by: ATSC | November 13, 2014 at 07:20 AM
Someone asked if I am an autism expert and I just someone who has lived with, raised and loved a child who has severe ASD for over 10 years so I guess that makes me an expert in nothing. I see gut damage in autism which affects the brain and all it's functions. I want more gut research because I feel this is what is most likely going to help the kids.
Posted by: AutismGoAway | November 13, 2014 at 06:49 AM
ATSC, perhaps you can help. If autism is not so much a matter of damaged brain anatomy for which MRI measures, but more a matter of brain or neuron connectivity , are there specific tests for this or is it entirely speculative?
Posted by: Greg | November 13, 2014 at 06:38 AM
William Thompson has admitted the cdc has the data to prove the direct association of vaccines and the development of autism (that isnt saying autism cannot be caused via other routes of pollution) . but what we do apparently agree on is autism is a toxicity , a poisoning .
Stephanie Seneff of MIT has thrown in Glyphosate as another contributing cause of autism (Monsatan's roundup) .
regarding the difference between autistic and neurotypical brains . There is a difference I'm sure . Else why did Harvard accidentally\deliberately allow these 100 autism specimen brains defrost and be lost and ruined .
the difference will be easily found . The Children with autism will test positive for Mercury & Aluminium contaminating their grey matter (and that pollution can get there via varying routes bu8t mostly via the crime of vaccination)
Posted by: White Rose | November 13, 2014 at 05:58 AM
Along with the two links, I was going to ask if functional differences would be noticeable in brain structure. Thanks to Greg's link to a similar article, here's a comment by Prof. Gerry Leisman which would answer that question.
"Autistic Brains" No Different than "Normal Brains"
"It should be no surprise that no apparent anatomical differences exist between autistic and non-autistic brains. There are few if any differences noticeable in the anatomy of many neurological issues that derive from functional rather than anatomic deficit. We know already that autistic brains organise their communication systems differently than non-autstic brains. Remember also that neuro-plasticity after brain damage permits return of function even with damaged anatomy, remember that congenital anencephalics (born with large portions of brain absent) can function at the highest level - Hafez al-Assad, the former ruler of Syria - being one. To understand brain and behavioural function better would would be better served to look at functional connections - enough with MRI answers all. "
Posted by: ATSC | November 13, 2014 at 04:35 AM
BGU research: The brain anatomy of people with autism is no different than those who are normal
Anatomical Abnormalities in Autism?
Posted by: ATSC | November 13, 2014 at 01:15 AM
The parents history of vaccination is a big factor also.
I know that I and my husband had additional vaccines in our teens and early 20s - esp my husband. He had a bunch of tetanus and Tick shots since he worked for the forest service.
My kids reacted to their DPT shots. My daughter mostly reacted weeks later and went unrecognized. My son however; reacted all three times fast and hard - and we still kept vaccinating cause the ped said so. Jerk. My son's reactions were hard to miss .
And in the end so was my husband's reactions to his additional vaccines. At age 28 and again at 35 he too did finally react right after a tetanus shot -- I suspect they were really DPT shots.
Soooo you see a kid that never had a vaccine and has autism -you hae to also wonder how much were their parents vaccinated.
Hmmmm - and the parents must have felt something was not right about vaccines some where along with themselves, or they would have vaccinated their kids - cause we are taught not to do so is a terrible thing almost a social taboo!
And to the rest you sweet things:
Autism esp those that are milder -- for those looking in through the windows and not living with it in the house -- it does not look too bad or disabling.
Example: I saw my old X high School boyfriend's mother a while back at the Dollar Store. She was standing there waiting for her grandson -- that I heard through the grapevine - and I see he has moved into a trailer close by his family and all -- well he is -- but he was tall, handsome, polite, and of course not chatty at all -- come up to stand beside her.
Yeah, he look good, acted good. But like them all he is not married, not holding a job, not bothering to build a porch on to his trailer - and it is a high door, his grandmother cooks for him, his Mother and Father live 200 feet away - his sister lives 100 feet away - and she is married, with kids and is a pharmacist. So I can see why Jerry might think -- hmmm yeah, I am a little social trouble going on that might be similiar.
But he really has no idea now does he ..
Posted by: Benedetta | November 13, 2014 at 01:04 AM
I don't think that study that found no structural difference between the brains of autistic individual and neurotypicals is to be interpreted as suggesting that brain anomalies do not explain autism. In fact, the author specifically entertains the notion that autism may be such a heterogeneous condition that each subset may carry its own specific regional anomaly. In other words, even if there isn't a global anomaly or damage, that is not to say there isn't peculiar ones.
"Dinstein also points out that autism has become a catchall phrase that actually covers a wide range of conditions. It is entirely possible that one specific kind within the autism spectrum is associated with a specific brain structure anomaly, he clarifies. “Expecting to find a single answer for the entire ASD population is naïve," he says. "We need to move on to thinking about how to split up this very heterogeneous group of disorders into more meaningful biologically-relevant subgroups."
Posted by: Greg | November 12, 2014 at 10:30 PM
I have a daughter with autism and she has never had a vaccine. She was born at Ina Mae Gaskins farm in southern Tennessee and we had NO VACCINES in the birth plan. We set it up this way because I have a background in holistic health and after doing some research, the risks seemed to outweigh the benefits. Yes, I'm sure she wasn't vaccinated at birth. I'm glad we didn't vaccinate, I am glad that groups like this one are advocating for our right not to vaccinate, I believe many cases of autism are vaccine induced, I believe my daughter's case of autism is environmental. I am on your side! (so please don't attack me.) But there are cases like my daughter's out there and trust me, they do not resemble Jerry Seinfeld. 'Environmental' needs to go beyond vaccines. Please don't discount children who were not vaccine injured. We love our children too. This is not my blog but another 3 cases can be found here http://flappingspinninggrinning.blogspot.com/2013/07/we-are-few-vaccine-free-and-autism.html
It is interesting how the majority of the unvaccinated and autistic are girls. – Just something I have noticed as I hunt on the internet for more cases like my daughter.
Posted by: Nancy | November 12, 2014 at 09:56 PM
It alarms and causes me despair due to the divisiveness and discord Jerry Seinfeld has managed to do within the autism community itself.
My son was originally diagnosed with Asperger's Disorder,299.80, and he qualified for all the federal disability benefits under that DSM code alone http://www.monarchcenterforautism.org/autism/aspergers-disorder. However after the DSM changed, his neuropsychologist recoded my son with Autistic Disorder 299.00 http://www.autreat.com/dsm4-autism.html
In the DSM code book, the change was only from 299.80 to 299.00. Whatever you want to call it, my son's brain is not functionally normal for an adult. He is not independent and he lives with me.
Either way you slice it, my adult son is impaired for life on the autism spectrum, has a developmental disability, a neurological disorder, brain damage. He only has me and the federal government to depend on. I have a Special Needs Trust set-up for him when I am gone.
Autism conferences I have gone to show slides of brain scans showing the difference between normal and autistic brains. There is brain damage, predominately in the social communication center of the brain. Some autistic brains are also gifted with focused areas of art and humanities, like drawing or maps or some other focus(es). The brain scans actually show how the visual center of some autistic people overcompensates the damaged communication center of the brain. Some autistic brains are savant in math and some are disabled in math. Many autistic people have higher IQ's than average, some are also mentally disabled if they have other disorders like Down's Syndrome.
If I were to be totally objective, I would describe my son has somewhere between severely autistic and sensory processing disorder, where exactly on that scale I could not say.
My son's neuropsychologist told me I would be explaining my son the enigma to people the rest of my life. That is so very true, but I did not think I would have to explain him to the autism community. We need to unite as many families with related disabilities and stand up for one another. I am sure that many people suffer more severity than my son, and I am sure that many people do not suffer as much. But anyone diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder is suffering a lifelong disability to some degree.
Not remotely by any stretch of the English language, does my son merely have an "alternate mindset", he is not normal, he is not neuro-diverse. I accept that. What little my son knows of that is a blessing.
It is Jerry Seinfeld who does not have autism spectrum disorder of any kind, unless some doctor is willing to risk his career and license for a wealthy comedian's whims.
Posted by: aspiesmom | November 12, 2014 at 09:43 PM
Hi AutismGoaway; "brain damage" is a diagnosis kind of like autism spectrum disorder, with effects ranging from mild to severe.
A common form of brain damage in older folk (CVA's; bleeds or clots in the brain) known also as a "stroke" can result in severe cases in paralysis of the effected side and loss of the ability to speak, or to understand speech.
TBI's ( head injuries) similarly can have wide ranging effects depending on the area that has been injured. As one example, loss of impulse control in social situations can be common. ( Ie:severely inappropriate social comments and behaviors).
I have cared for some severely effected people with brain damage in the past.
And my son, like the original "rainman" is missing the middle part ( corpus callosum ) of his brain.
A couple of studies you may be interested in
"Brain structural abnormalities in young children with autism spectrum disorders" (Sparks et al, Neurology July 23,2002 Vol 59, No 2 184-192)
and also "Postmortem brain abnormalities of the glutamate neurotransmitter system in Autism"
I suspect though that a study that included enough self diagnosed adults with "autism" would almost certainly find no brain changes :)
Do agree though that the gut is an important piece of the puzzle in many cases. Suspect that glutamate neurotransmitters and increased susceptibility to toxins is also part of it all.
Posted by: Hera | November 12, 2014 at 08:46 PM
You said, "Autism is not brain damage. It is gut damage and imbalance. If we want our kids to get better we need to demand more gut research. Most people with brain damage function much better than someone with full-blown autism."
Are you a GI expert? An autism expert? I am a little confused about your absolute statement that autism is NOT brain damage. What do you think damage to the gut might do to the brain? Why do you think that you can have gut damage but NOT brain damage? You might want to rethink your comment. In many children and adults autism or its symptoms are indeed a result of damage to the brain. Whether that damage is permanent or not is another topic.
Posted by: sorrybuttruthhurts | November 12, 2014 at 08:43 PM
Brilliant article, Julie.
Posted by: Taximom5 | November 12, 2014 at 07:10 PM
Great article, Julie.
Posted by: jen | November 12, 2014 at 05:31 PM
I am not angry at Seinfeld. He is just making a statement based on what he has read or heard about autism. There are autism experts who have defined autism as extreme maleness, who have focused on the social aspects, the "different way of thinking". Seinfeld might fit that definition. I have a son who thinks about the world the same way as everyone else and understands facial expressions and social nuances etc. BUT he is in diapers, he stopped speaking at age 2 and he is very disabled. Seinfeld is not disabled. He should not have the same label as a disabled child with whom he has nothing in common, spectrum or no spectrum. He is not the first non-disabled person to give himself the label. Temple Grandin bugs me a lot more. I blame the so-called experts who decided to put autism and Aspergers together. They really should not have done that.
BTW they recently did a big and very well-done study that found absolutely no brain differences btw those with ASD and controls. Autism is not brain damage. It is gut damage and imbalance. If we want our kids to get better we need to demand more gut research. Most people with brain damage function much better than someone with full-blown autism.
Posted by: AutismGoAway | November 12, 2014 at 05:04 PM
Posted by: Visitor | November 12, 2014 at 04:51 PM
Call it "vaccine injury and would Jerry still have it"...sums it up for me
Posted by: Angus Files | November 12, 2014 at 04:47 PM
Thank you for expressing so well what it is like for many of us. And shame on Jerry Seinfeld. Your personality "quirks" are not autism.
Posted by: 4Bobby | November 12, 2014 at 03:27 PM
Hey Jerry, check this out>http://behavenet.com/node/21653
DISCLAIMER: I am no expert, but if it looks like a duck...and meets 9 out 9 criteria...
Posted by: aspiesmom | November 12, 2014 at 02:40 PM
Comments are interesting, too...
Posted by: Bayareamom | November 12, 2014 at 02:24 PM
Is he autistic -- isn't he? Honestly, as long as the cause is not 'conceded' (ahem -- vaccines) nor the biomarkers (ahem -- brain damage) we will continue this sideshow for a long time to come. And this suits the powers-that-be perfectly fine.
Posted by: Greg | November 12, 2014 at 01:16 PM
I work with special needs children and also know a family where the first daughter had autism, so they did not vaccinate their second baby at all (also a girl). However, the baby soon began to display some mild, but definite symptoms of being on the spectrum. So, they figured since she was on the spectrum anyway, in spite of never being vaccinated, they might as well go ahead and vaccinate (as vaccines were not the cause). That was such a tragic mistake to witness! That little toddler went from having mild symptoms to full blown autism right after her shots. She is now SO impaired it breaks my heart. So yes, we do need to consider all sources of toxicity (amalgams, pollution, our food and water, etc). I also feel the microbiome research will reveal more risk factors to consider before blindly vaccinating. Those kids who do end up on the spectrum without any prior vaccinations ( and I do believe there are some, but such a tiny percentage in comparison to the regressive, definitely vaccinated majority), are even more prone to vaccine injury. I personally feel vaccinating those kids is even more dangerous.
Posted by: Anne J | November 12, 2014 at 01:10 PM
Julie what an amazing article. Forwarding it to the planet!
Posted by: Wishing for recovery for all | November 12, 2014 at 12:14 PM
Hi Jon, just hoping for some clarification here.
Normally children in the U.S. get vaccinated on the day of birth ( Hep B shot)
Then they are vaccinated at three months. then six months. then more at a year old. And it continues..
I have never heard of a child being diagnosed with autism before age 2,so most kids have had many many vaccines before their autism diagnosis. Did you and your wife refuse shots all these times? If so, may I ask why?
Autism however can be understood as a way of describing symptoms that have resulted from damage to the parts of the brain that involves speech and social cues.
Just like a headache describes the symptom of pain in the head.
Both can have multiple causes.
It is possible that say hypothetically a friends' headache can be caused by drinking too much beer, and your headache could have been caused by hitting your head on something.
Same symptom, different cause.
Similarly 6% of people with autism have genetic causes such as fragile x syndrome. No one routinely tests for fragile x, and its main symptom is autism type behaviors.
Encephalitis, brain damage from a vaccine, can also cause symptoms of autism.
Agenesis of the corpus callosum ( being born missing the part of the brain that connects the left and right hemisphere) also causes symptoms of autism.
Same symptoms, multiple possible causes.
It is possible that (A)
some people ( probably very few) are born with genetic problems, or missing areas of the brain that will result in autism
It is also possible that (B) many children that were born without autism will develop it after a vaccine reaction causes damage to their brain.
In fact, in the case of Bradley Banks who was compensated by the U.S. government for brain damage, that is exactly what happened. They took MRI's during the reaction after his vaccine that documented the damage as it was occurring. Hard to argue with that.
Posted by: Hera | November 12, 2014 at 12:14 PM
"Let's pick a day and do it all over the country simultaneously. "
Why not internationally ? US , EU , Asia , Oceania , Africa
I agree totally - we need to challenge them !
The anti-MonSatan anti-GM model is the successful model already in existence .
Posted by: White Rose | November 12, 2014 at 12:04 PM
One word for this article, Julie, and that is EXCELLENT! Thank you!
Posted by: Laura Hayes | November 12, 2014 at 11:50 AM
Mainstream media sees Seinfeld's lame comments as "newsworthy," but the CDC whistleblower story got NO mainstream coverage?! Seriously?! The Propaganda Machine is hard at work these days.
Posted by: Anne J | November 12, 2014 at 11:28 AM
Most people around us are practically unaware how devastating and dangerous the regressive autism is. Media is to blame. When one googles "definition of autism", the first thing that comes up is: "a mental condition, present from early childhood, characterized by difficulty in communicating and forming relationships with other people and in using language and abstract concepts". Everything else on the web is pretty much following the same definition. Then how will people who have never dealt with our nightmare understand what we are going through?? We either need to change that definition or label our injured children's condition differently with a comprehensive definition of it in all media. We should spread leaflets lke "Autism Kills, Vaccines Kill (if done aggressively and between 0 and 36 months)!" Spread it everywhere - in stores, on bridges, in the parks, in the airports, on Facebook, everywhere. Let's pick a day and do it all over the country simultaneously.
Posted by: Will's mom | November 12, 2014 at 11:14 AM
I am sickb of autism being overdiagnosed in these anti antisocial nerds. I have real high functioning as utism plus medical issues. Some examples i have nf and inflammatory bowel disease i almost died in january of seizure like activity caused by low blood sugar at lac usc hospital
Posted by: w ford | November 12, 2014 at 10:25 AM
Every few weeks we get a comment here from someone announcing that their child has autism despite the fact they did not vaccinate. It's funny that: someone who didn't vaccinate becoming an advocate for vaccination. In your case you are not saying this is what happened with your children, you just say you happen to have a friend (but they are not identified).
You say one of your children began to present before vaccination, but unless you are very careful in the US (and often even if you are) they get Hep B at birth - but since you are believer I hardly think you would have prevented it. When was your child first vaccinated? When did they present symptoms? Let's get this clear.
Posted by: For Jon | November 12, 2014 at 09:41 AM
Heartfelt sympathies to you Jon .
But regarding "began to present before vaccines"
did you pursue the vaccine program after this point, because Russell Blaylock talks of the priming of the microglial and then the reaching of a tipping point of no return (his vidoes are all over Youtube and well worth trawling through everything he has to say).
I'd further implicate toxicity of all nature , the fluoridation of water , mercury amalgams , any maternal vaccines the mother had taken previously at any time in that persons lifetime .
Also worth reviewing is Charles Richet's work from 1913 for which he won a nobel prize on Anaphylaxis . And you can imagine all the subsequent additional scientific work that has been investigated in the interim 100 years since that date . But he is likely credited with opening the field .
Strange that the Spanish flu outbreak should occur so soon after this work 1918, and all the allegations that fly regarding that pandemic and eyewitnesses who link it to vaccine programs of the day . No I'm not making this up .
Posted by: White Rose | November 12, 2014 at 09:16 AM
Jerry Seinfeld has sealed his fate as an exploiter of disabled children and adults, our loved ones, that live with a lifelong neurological disorder. His "alternate mindset" proclamation coincides with his marketing of his TV show's season 5 premier on 11/6/2014. Seinfeld is an unfunny bully.
On the bright side, there are still celebrity hearts of gold, Robert Schneider, Jim Carrey and of course Jenny McCarthy, who pour their hearts with compassion and humor into the autism community. Because of them and others like them, I still have faith in humanity.
Posted by: aspiesmom | November 12, 2014 at 09:09 AM
No Jerry you dont have Autism .
Autism is the industrial vaccine poisoning of the masses.
And in my opinion you dont have comic talent either.
I'm amazed at how lucrative the field has been for you given your complete dearth of any real tangible talent & your general intellectual insight.
Posted by: White Rose | November 12, 2014 at 08:56 AM
People who don't have the experience of a sick child cannot imagine what that means. And this is unfortunate because it also means the medical injuries will continue at full speed ahead with more and more parents and children having shattered lives. Jerry Seinfeld is stupid, not funny, and in my opinion never was funny. He is expressing more of that stupidity, and not funniness by his statement. But the media is criminal for not informing the public! And the medical establishment hasn't a clue about how to treat a child without injuring them. Not the best state of affairs. That is why parents of sick children are like the pioneers of yesteryear in the covered wagon days. We are thrown back on home remedies. Even the very best doctors who don't vaccinate their own children, still pass out the antibiotics like candy at Halloween. And even well intentioned parents keep giving their babies tylenol for even a mild fever. We are at the end of a medical paradigm, and the better (sometimes older) means of treatment still have not taken hold.
Posted by: kapoore | November 12, 2014 at 08:49 AM
Jon, I wish your children well. Vaccines are not the only route to autism, just a superhighway for many of our families.
Posted by: Stagmom | November 12, 2014 at 08:44 AM
My wife and I have two kids with autism. One began to present BEFORE vaccines were introduced. My wife also has a friend with two daughters with autism. Neither one has ever seen a vaccination of ANY kind. I'm not sure, then, how their autism was "induced."
Posted by: Jon | November 12, 2014 at 08:15 AM
Well stated Julie .. like you .. I still watch Jerry's re-runs .. but .. that may no longer be how I spend my down-time.
In any event ..
"Being socially awkward, taking things literally, and having a hard time with nuance makes you no more autistic than" ..
flying a kite as a child would make you a rocket scientist.
scribbling with crayons as a child would make you an artist.
As Ginger so aptly put it .. SCREW JERRY SEINFELD!
Posted by: BoB Moffitt | November 12, 2014 at 06:36 AM