Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Our Sons Are Not Future Killers

From The New York Times' Motherlode blog, a post by Emily Willingham is science editor at the Thinking Person’s Guide to Autism, manages the Double X Science blog, and blogs at Forbes.
The Asperger’s stereotype before the shootings in Newtown, Conn., was relatively harmless if inaccurate – that of a quirky, brilliant male unable to read subtle social cues or navigate the world of non-autistic people. Think Sheldon on “The Big Bang Theory” or Abed on “Community.”
The reality, like any reality disconnected from network television, is quite different. People with Asperger’s have a highly variable set of skills and capacities, most of them unrelated to brilliance or prepossessing eccentricities. Average intelligence, very real struggles with social navigation, and joblessness are far more prevalent among those with Asperger’s  than cute personality quirks like wearing unmatched socks or exhibiting an endless fascination with trains.

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