From: OldCoyote@webmail.co.za (Old Coyote)
Subject: Re: Scientists baffled by increase in autism
Date: 26 Oct 2002 17:33:00 -0700
NNTP-Posting-Date: 27 Oct 2002 00:33:00 GMT
Satyr wrote in message news: OldCoyote@webmail.co.za (Old Coyote) writes:
> > "Tom" wrote in message
> > news:...
> > > > As for Aspergers, I doubt it entirely. 2/3 of my family have been
> > > > social workers for a long time, and I have had the pleasure to
> > > > volunteer at many functions. It seems very unlikely that any talent
> > > > of a broad enough scope to be profitable could routinely appear in
> > > > people who are otherwise obviously handicapped.
> > >
> > > I don't think there's any serious doubt about the existence of savant
> > > abilities in cognitively disabled people.
> > Oh I'm not questioning savant phenomena, I've seen it myself. I
> > know an autistic man who can tell you what he had for breakfast
> > on any given day, for instance. However that is not going to make
> > him rich. I believe most (almost all) savant abilities are like that,
> > essentially trivial.
> Autism and Asperger's are not necessarily the same thing. Some schools
> of modern thought, for instance, maintain that there is not a
> clear-cut dividing line between autism and Asperger's syndrome, that
> both lie upon a broad and continuous spectrum of what are called
> pervasive developmental disorders.
> Obviously, someone who fits the standard definition of "autistic" may
> exhibit an amazing abstract skill, but the severity of their handicap,
> as you note, will prevent them from capitalizing on that skill.
> However, as a blanket statement about what is possible, you are
> forcing individuals to conform to a very rigid definition of who is
> and is not autistic. This is very old-fashioned, and represents
> precisely the kind of prejudice high-functional autistics face. Folks
> like you appear to demand they either be handicapped, or not
> handicapped, successful or an utter failure, with no middle ground
Quite the opposite. I suppose you didn't read what I wrote.
> Bill Gates is a pretty good example, though he has not, to the best of
> my knowledge, been officially diagnosed with Asperger's.
Nor will he ever be, unless he wants to. Why would that be? Because
he's better than either of us maybe? Notice that one of us doesn't
feel a need to denigrate him by labelling the man as handicapped for
Hell, if you won't read what I write, I'll demo it for you. I'm just
that kind of guy.