Wednesday, September 23, 2015

To the Presidential Candidates Bringing Up Autism in the Debates

Dear So and So who wants my vote,
Hello! I see you’re trying to court a rapidly growing community. Smart move seeing how large the autism population and those who love and support them has grown. No debating with you on that one. This is more than just a special interest group. You clearly see we want changes, and we make that known at the polls.
Here’s the thing. (You knew that was coming. Sit down, Sir and/or Madam.) You think you know what it is we all want. It’s not as simple as you or your people are leading you to believe. Lesson one with autism: it’s never a simple thing.
Apparently, I was suppose to fall over or do backflips because autism was mentioned during the last Republican candidates’ debate. Did you get my attention? Yes, but not in the way you wanted. All I heard was the same stuff that has been said far too often. The big old vaccine debate gets tossed around and lots of scary words like “epidemic” are bellowed from the podium. Cue the big applause from the audience. 
I’m not applauding a single one of those candidates for talking about autism. Why? Simply because they seem to forget time and time again that all these autistic kids they love to talk about will grow up. Yes Sir or Madam, these kids age! I know. It’s amazing how they grow taller and bigger! I’ve seen it with my very own eyes as my 11-year-old son puts on a pair of jeans that are now three inches too short. 
Candidates, just what are you going to do for these autistic children you love to talk about? As much as I joke about how I can’t die and I have to live forever for my son, let’s face reality. Someday, I will. Who will care for my adult child? Will my son be given the chance to have meaningful employment? Will he have access to proper medical care? Knock on wood, we have been lucky on the health front with our kid, but I know many more who have “autism and…” such as epilepsy, heart issues, diabetes, etc. What about them?
Often I see the government slash social services budgets to bits, citing welfare and Medicaid reform. Did you know our kids, the ones you love to talk about when you’re trying to get a vote, are the very ones who need it? You want me to be impressed you’re even bringing up autism. Impress me more by remembering how much our population depends on these programs you look to trim far too much. 
It’s great you’re talking about our kids. Don’t get me wrong there. Education and supports are so vital to our children, especially in the early years. Just don’t stop the conversation at “children.” Let’s expand that to “people.” Call me when you have some presentations to share about providing long term health coverage, supports, employment and appropriate housing for autistic adults who need it. Then I’ll know you’re really thinking about our kids. 
Be careful when you go to throw out what you think is a buzzword or a good sound bite. We’re listening, and we’re voting.
This piece was originally run on the site, The Mighty. (


  1. Amen mama fry!! i echoed those similiar thoughts when I heard them bring it up!

  2. I understand where you are coming from Mama Fry, but there is much more to this issue that you don't hear about in the main media. 80% of the autism population are still children, and that's why the government doesn't mention anything about support services for adults on the spectrum. Unfortunately, our government is very reactive instead of proactive. CNN bought up the autism-vaccine question to simply make Donald Trump look like an idiot because he's very outspoken about the autism-vaccine link. In the end, all 3 candidates (2 of them are physicians) agreed that we are giving our children too many vaccines and that some of the vaccines are not necessary. There is a huge issue with the government taking away our medical freedom to choose. They mandate vaccines for children, but vaccines have no liability by federal law. Donald Trump cares more about the autism epidemic than any other candidate.

    I wish and hope that one of the presidental candidates would bring up the fact that we currently have a whistleblower at the CDC, Dr. William Thompson. Dr. Thompson said that there has been a cover-up at the CDC regarding the link between vaccines and autism. The CDC scientists found a link between the MMR vaccine and autism more than a decade ago, and they got together to throw the evidence in a large garbage can.

    I would like the truth about the vaccine-autism link to come out for 2 main reasons. First reason is the stop the vaccination madness and prevent anymore children from getting autism. Second reason is to apology to our children who got injuried with autism from the vaccines. If you still don't believe there is a link between the vaccines and autism, then you need to do more research and read the vaccine package inserts and the toxic ingredients in the vaccines. The US government has billions of dollars sitting in the Vaccine Injury Compension Fund. Let's take that money and compensate the autism victims.

    Last but not least, I recommend this article written by Sharyl Attkinson, a former CBS journalist:

  3. I was chatting to my daughter's case worker the other day and I casually mentioned that when she was 18 she would get social security.
    She said "Probably not right away.
    "What?" I said.
    She went on to explain that even the most seriously disabled people will not get social security at 18 because they have 'parents to look after them.' I was stunned. I had assumed that social security would be a done deal at 18. So I would have to abandon her or be dead for her to get social security?
    Unless there is a plan in place, I can only imagine the 'default plan' will be to deny anyone who has any semblance of family support social assistance in their adult years. This scares the dirt out of me! My daughter was not injured by a vaccine. That makes her no less worthy a human being.

    1. Your daughter is entitled to Social Security at 18 years old. Just make sure your daughter doesn't have anymore than $2000 in her name (bank accounts, savings bonds, etc.). If she has more than $2000 in her name, then she won't qualify for SS. Also, hire a lawyer to get a special needs trust for your daughter. You need to get power of attorney for your daughter. There are pro-active steps that you need to take before your daughter turns 18 years old.

  4. Thank you, Mama Fry. I feel the exact same way. It's put up or shut up. Our kids aren't bullet points, they are actual human beings.