Perspectives from an autistic man

December 28, 2019

As a young man on the autism spectrum (I was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome back when it was still an official diagnosis), I feel like my life and my interests are usually poorly served by culture in general and specifically by both ends of the political spectrum. Most obviously a lot of people equate autism with stupidity, and with being a cute, funny man child. I don’t see too much effort to stop those attitudes; I honestly see far more people encouraging and defending those mindsets.

Particularly, the political right really seems to hate autistic people. It rarely even tries to hide this fact; you constantly hear MAGA types using “retarded” and “autistic” as insults, and if you call them out they’ll tell you you’re just enforcing PC culture. Hopefully everyone on this board agrees that this is toxic behavior.

The left is less blatant in its hatred of autistic people, but in my experience it still generally hates them, particularly autistic men. This is because their agenda relies on the idea that all men are able to understand social interactions and read between the lines of what a woman wants. An entire group that is medically proven to struggle with those things is seen as a threat to their narrative. Consequently, the far left (particularly the feminist movement) doesn’t seem to have much sympathy for autistic men’s struggles. The meaninglessness and conformist bent associated with the term “creepy” has been noted before, and in my opinion it’s often used to shame traditionally autistic traits.

I really wish more effort was made to explain the subtleties of social interaction and less was made to simply shame people for not understanding them.

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