The government recently made a new connection with the Autistic community by confirming Ari Ne’eman to the National Council on Disability. Ari not only has autism, but is a driving force in promoting education, awareness and understanding to the public. It is to be hoped that by this confirmation it will help shed more light and a voice to not only the children, but the autistic adult. There is a large population of adults with autism whose voices are not being heard. Instead the focus is on the causes, cure, blame and birth rate of newly diagnosed cases.
We live in a human society where we are judged harshly for not fitting into what society calls the “norm.” Many people use their reasoning to generalize how every one should be and not leaving room for those of us who are different. As an autistic adult I look at the world as an incongruent system that I must conform to. I am not alone in thinking and feeling this way. There are many individuals struggling to fit in to this world. Being different can work for some people who know how to navigate through the maze that we live by and can try to fit in. We do applaud those who are different when they offer entertainment, creativity and scientific discoveries. However, looking at the world it is not a kind place for those of us who are autistic.
In our culture it allows many people to live their life the way they want to, but those of us who are not neurotypical feel displaced. We are living with unique minds trying to unravel the mysteries of fitting in like Sherlock Holmes solving a difficult case. Some people feel they need life to change for them because the rejection they have to deal with on a daily basis destroys any sense of self. So how and where can these changes start to happen for the adults living with autism? Why does everyone forget that the autistic youngsters, will become an adult sooner then they realize? It would be good if some advances and acceptance were made for all individuals on the spectrum.
The National Council on Disability tries to encourage every one with a disability to strive to their fullest potential. This means just because you have a disability, does not mean you are incapable to do anything. Disability is a label used to displace others who society feels cannot be or do anything. Every one has an ability to move this world in whatever way they possibly can. The more one realizes this it will facilitate the change needed in society.
People who are given labels are generally expected to act in a certain manner. Their behave at times can be very outrageous. It is accepted because of the label they have. After all why should they act differently when it is expected and allowed. Their behavior is unfair to every one else around them. We should be teaching, not enabling them. Some people need a lot more support and understanding to be taught how to function in society. There is acceptable ways to live in this society while they may be different they have to be accepted to be accepted. Changes can and will occur in time for it is a process of being patient, working hard and keeping our morale up. The first step is getting rid of categorizing and labeling people. How can we do this? Where can we start? This can be done on a small level by every one of us. On a larger scale by The National Council on Disability and other organizations.
So, Hopefully Ari will be able to fulfill some needed goals.