By Adriana Gamondes
Another Andrew Solomon fail. For his recent New York Times op-ed on autism and mass murder, it appears as if he scoured AofA's and other coverage of autism/mass murder spin and then surgically excised any mention of prescription drugs. It's no surprise. Solomon famously takes psychiatric drugs himself, and is the son of Howard Solomon, CEO of Forest Labs for the past 35 years. He's a shill, though with a genuine blind spot and the NY Times is using him to defend drug sales.
"The Myth of the Autistic Shooter"
Despite what is probably Solomon's sincere intent to deflect the mass murder/autism association, his theories do nothing to protect people with autism or any other mental disorder to set off an alternative witch hunt for the "psychopathic gene.” It simply opens the door for a gold rush of diagnostic theories that psychopathology “often coexists” with autism and we’re back at square one—with a bulls eye across the backs of entire diagnostic categories. As Solomon himself admits, there’s no biomarker for psychopathology. It’s diagnosed through subjective observation, so therefore can be pinned on anyone handy. And who could be more handy than the population of individuals with autism whose inconveniently rising ranks stand as evidence against the safety of another profitable pharmaceutical product line?
And worse, considering CDC whistleblower disclosures that African American boys exposed to certain vaccines suffer a 340% increased risk of autism that likely explains the current massive increase in diagnosis within minority populations, and considering the Minority Report-style hunt for criminal genes has historically centered on race, Solomon's resurrection of the crime gene hypothesis is an ill wind that blows no good. It was the theme of Peter Breggin’s chilling history of racist psychiatric abuse, The War Against Children of Color. Reference to the modern crime gene program was the final warning in Cologne geneticist Benno Müller-Hill’s seminal study of the Nazi T-4 killing program, Murderous Science: The Elimination by Scientific Selection of Jews, Gypsies, and the Mentally Disabled in Germany, 1033-1945. And according to political philsopher Hannah Arendt, the idea of a biomarker for criminality – the “objective (scientifically proven) enemy”—is the core of every totalitarian cult of the 20th century.
More than a century of hunting for this crime gene has turned up nothing because it doesn't exist, though the concept that it does has unleashed horrors and repression.