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What do you all think about this video?

http://www.theonion.com/video/autistic-reporter-train-thankfully-unharmed-in-cra,20098/ 

I understand that this is The Onion.  I understand that they are about humor and satire.  But I don't really see the point of having their reporter be "autistic".  Couldn't they have made their story humorous without the autism angle?

I have a child with autism, and this story bothers me.

 
tinamatt

Asked by tinamatt at 11:58 AM on Apr. 30, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 26 (27,323 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (30)
  • It was essentially a skit, made up to poke fun of people with Autism. The actor(assuming he was acting) was not offensive. What tugged at my heart was the fact that people find this amusing. That possibly people would look at my daughter and laugh.
    Also, this was full of stereotypes. It is not a good depiction of what Autism/Aspergers is. Autism affects everyone differently.
    smarieljlee

    Answer by smarieljlee at 2:30 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • Tina--As you may know BOTH of my children have autism, and this is why I wouldn't even click on your link. Realizing The Onion is pure satire, there is NOTHING humorous about poking fun at ANY disability--no matter how pronounced or not.
    LoriKeet

    Answer by LoriKeet at 12:21 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • Plus people need understand that ASDs include a range of developmental and cognitive issues. Some on the spectrum are affected  to the degree of rainman, while others are not. It's great to have expectations of what one can achieve, as long as one has not placed the bar too low OR too high...it works both ways. In addition, this is applicable to ALL developing children. Let's face it, not everyone is going to grow up to be a Neurosurgeon, no matter how much mommy and daddy wish it to be so. As with everything, balance is the answer.


     I did not watch the clip, so I can not commit specifically on that piece. I do think that every person deserves is to be accepted for who they are, no matter their mental or physical status-

    Sisteract

    Answer by Sisteract at 3:54 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • But again, HOW was that clip making fun of his autism? I would argue that it would go the opposite direction and show that autistic people can hold down jobs people may only consider for non-autistic people. He's a reporter. He's on the news. He's being interviewed. And he's holding his own.

    ***

    See, the fact that you think it's an "accomplishment" for an autistic person to hold down a job, goes to your assumption that autistic people cannot be productive members of society!

    In my house, it is EXPECTED that my children obtain college degrees, and it is EXPECTED that they will be independent, respectable, and productive/contributing members of society!! Anything less is setting the bar low, and being patronizing. Did I mention that my 9 year old's IQ score is 135?! That's higher than most TYPICALLY developing children! This is why STEREOTYPES torque me off!

    We don't "celebrate" that which is expected.
    LoriKeet

    Answer by LoriKeet at 1:15 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • I went ahead and clicked on it...but didn't finish it. IMO, the video is an imitation of a "copycat." You know the annoying person that copies everything you say or do for their amusement and your expense. It is taking the styles and mannerisms associated with autism and using them for humor. I don't find it the least bit funny.
    yourspecialkid

    Answer by yourspecialkid at 5:30 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • That seriously pisses me off. My clients and their parents have wonderful relationships where we laugh all the time at the children, the circumstances, and most often - ourselves.

    ***
    There is a BIG difference between laughing WITH someone and laughing AT someone!! The video (I presume based on the comments, since I refuse to look at it), laughs AT the people with autism.

    The diagnosis for us was not a "happy day full of laughter" actually quite the opposite. It took a lot of time digesting and educating ourselves as to what we would be dealing with for the rest of our lives, and FINALLY after much effort, we are beginning to see a strong future for our children, and NOW we are all in a good place.

    However, my heart literally aches for the parents with severely affected children, who may never realize the future we expect our children have. I have yet to laugh AT any of those children or AT the children I teach!
    LoriKeet

    Answer by LoriKeet at 9:54 AM on May. 1, 2011

  • Yes I don't blame you. It was like they are making fun of him....
    Brandi300

    Answer by Brandi300 at 12:04 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • This is an offensive video to me. They are making fun of him!!! This is just WRONG!!!!!
    vbruno

    Answer by vbruno at 12:29 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • But what, specifically, has this video done to berate, tease, make fun of, or be offensive to people with autism?

    ***
    I didn't/won't watch the video, but since you obviously don't understand. Anyone who pokes fun at someone with a disability is perpetuating the STEREOTYPES that the disability has generated, without considering the fact that NOT EVERYONE WHO IS AFFECTED BY AUTISM IS LIKE DUSTIN HOFFMAN'S CHARACTER PORTRAYAL IN "RAINMAN!!"

    While my children have autism, unless you tried to speak to them, you wouldn't know they have it, because their autism manifests itself in their inability to hold a conversation. They are not rigid or toe walkers, they don't flap their hands, they do not rock or have sensory issues, they simply didn't speak until they were both 4 years old!! HOWEVER, academically, they are in regular education classrooms, without any Aides or Therapeutic Support Staff, and are straight A students!
    LoriKeet

    Answer by LoriKeet at 12:54 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

  • THIS is why Autism Awareness needs to continue to be emphasized. Too many people are not understanding of it, and like ego...think everyone with Autism is like "Rainman" or believes the likes of Jenny McCarthy thinking it is caused by vaccinations or poor parenting. Ugh.
    LoriKeet

    Answer by LoriKeet at 12:56 PM on Apr. 30, 2011

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