Jan 20, 2016, PBS: Telling the story of parents and activists who fought for autism acceptance (Series: Understanding Autism)
Dr. Sarmistha Hauger: "...The vast majority of those cases happen in people that are either incompletely vaccinated or unvaccinated."
Reporter: "Doctors say fears of autism may have caused parents to rethink vaccines. Dr. Hauger says there's no evidence that proves immunizations are linked to autism.... Hauger backs vaccines so much, she wouldn't mind if some were mandatory."
Hauger: "I don't think that people should have an option for a waiver for certain types of vaccines that keep our population safe."
Of course Dr. Hauger omitted the fact that neither she nor the rest of the medical community can be held liable if a child is injured by a vaccine. That never seems to be part of message when doctors tell parents to vaccinate..
(VIDEO) Interview with John Donvan and Caren Zucker
Donvan talked about how "this condition that we never heard of until about 75 years ago came into consciousness."
"Many people only heard about it in the last 15 years or so, largely as a result of controversy."
Caren Zucker brought up how we used to put autistic people into institution and how children with autism weren't allowed to go to school. Donvan explained that we've now started to come out of the dark ages of autism neglect as far as children are concerned, we just haven't done the same for adults.
Zucker: "Parents were told to put their children in institutions. ...Keeping them at home, nobody did that. And if they did, they hid them. And if they put them in institutions, they didn't tell anyone. It was what doctors told you to do."
Donvan: "And to forget about your kids. They would say, 'Put your kids there, go home, take care of your kids who are 'normal," and try to forget those kids. Some parents, many parents did that, through about the 1950s or 60s."
Donvan talked about the confusion surrounding autism leading to all the controversy, and what's going to be happening.
Donvan: "We're at a point now where things aren't perfect, but we have at least tried to address the challenges of children with autism in ways that we weren't doing nearly sufficiently even 25 years ago. In public schools they're getting direct education and direct therapy. But that's, we think, the job only being half done. Something is going to happen to all of these kids. They're basically going to grow up..."
"What do we do about adults? I think everybody agrees it's a problem but nobody really has a solution."
"I don't sense that people are loving the adults the way they learned to love kids. The truth is, they're not going to be cute in the same way as kids are, and they shouldn't have to be cute to deserve and merit our attention and support."
Zucker: "[Adults], they're not aren't embraced. They're unknown still. People aren't used to having adults with autism around."
This makes no sense whatsoever. PBS is buying into the absurd claim that autism has always been here like this, (notice they never mention the current rate of one in every 45 children, one in 28 boys) we just hid them away somewhere until about 60 years ago. Up until that time people with autism were not allowed in public.
So autism was a big, dark secret. Until 25 years ago, as Donvan noted, WE JUST IGNORED ALL THE PEOPLE EVERYWHERE WITH AUTISM. Donvan said that we're doing a better job with the children, especially in our schools, but there is still a total lack of recognition of autism in the adult population. WHY IS THAT? Why are we told that all the autism among our children is the result of "better diagnosing" by doctors, but when it comes to adults, doctors can't pick out the spinning, rocking, hand-flapping, non-verbal autistic patient in a geriatric ward?
I can't imagine anything more insulting to the medical community, teachers and parents than to accuse all of them of hideous abuse and neglect of a huge disabled population. Why did everyone suddenly become enlightened about autism and start addressing it 25 years ago? I was teaching then. I didn't suddenly wake up one morning and notice all the disabled kids in my classroom. The truth is, gradually over the last 25 years, we've all grown used to more and more kids who can't speak, can't learn like everyone else, and can't behave in a classroom. Donvan calls it progress. I call it bizarre to think that media outlets everywhere are giving these authors air time and never once asking them legitimate questions about their claims.
Anne Dachel is Media Editor for Age of Autism.