Why Many Autistics Dislike Autism Speaks

Over on Skepchick we recently got a question from Paul about the differences between the organization Autism Speaks and alternate viewpoints on autism. He asked:

I’d like to hear (read) the Skepchicks’ take on ActuallyAustistic vs. AutismSpeaks. I must confess to only having heard of the former just recently (a half-hour ago). After a half-hour of googling, all I can seem to find on ActuallyAustistic are blogs with accusations and no sources, false dichotomies, and other tricks of the propaganda trade. It’s raised a flag. It’s possible that the only sites I’ve found in my half-assed research just happened to be of this nature. But clicking on the ActuallyAutistic hashtag reveals a frightening number of posts all parroting the same stuff. It’s smells a bit of anti-sciencism.

I definitely understand Paul’s confusion on this topic, and I hope to clear some of it up. Jumping into the world of autism advocacy can be pretty confusing at first, since so many autistic people are opposed to the largest and most visible advocacy organization that claims to speak for us.

The rest of this post can be read over on Skeptability!

Benny Vimes

Benny Vimes is a queer polyamorous transman, curious skeptic, and enthusiastic seeker of knowledge. He's an undergraduate student in his 30's and loves teaching people about alternative sexuality and gender issues.

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