Yesterday’s traumas of assault on secured rights to an education inseparate from others are operative from the day of your diagnosis. While quiet incompetence is demonstrated by most speakers, what your subculture has is behavior reports and weak potent testing sets, where a report that your body doesn’t work is somehow powerfully connected by a financially motivated system interpreting that you have an incompetent mind. Where most people who vocalize words but sound like fools avoid Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), our Special Ed wardens ensure all IEPs are un-restored from the jotted presumption of incompetence originating years before. In this fragile place, you learn that no one successfully applies to escape life skills. There is money on the line. Autism secures more for a school than any other disability. No one wants to know. Loss of your incompetence will cost big money.
Patiently, in this subculture with IEPs and meetings where everyone issues opinions about your abilities but you, where stupid exercises assume you are incompetent but what’s really not working is your body, sits some amazing person who has begun to say, after dozens of IEP meetings, reasonably that you want to contribute to the discussion and would like an education, please. This alarms the warden and her staff. She has no room for this insurrection in her well-run, disciplined jail. You need to be attacked, embarrassed, made to feel exceptionally unworthy, which isn’t hard since you were told who and what you’ll never, ever be since your diagnosis.
Elizabeth Torres, PhD, a neuroscientist whose specialty is motor activity, points out the subjectivity of literally every one of our nonverbal diagnoses when she writes:
Spontaneous movements and reflexes exist embedded in natural movement sequences and carry rhythms that in typical neonates can be entrained socially e.g., with adult speech (Condon and Sander, 1974) even before perception has fully matured. Retrospective studies of reflexes and spontaneous movements have shown that their disruption precedes the diagnosis of ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) (Teitelbaum et al., 1998; Karmel et al., 2010). On the voluntary side, intentional motions have been documented in neonates as early as 10 days old (van der Meer et al., 1995) continuing along a maturation process that leads to stable goal-directed reaches (Von Hofsten, 1982, 2004; Thelen et al., 1993, 1996; Bhat and Galloway, 2006; Lee et al., 2008; van Wermeskerken et al., 2011). In autism however, typical volitional control is highly compromised often with a striking disconnect between the intentions and the actions of the affected individual (Robledo et al., 2012)
A recent article in Scientific American observed:
Researchers have long considered the majority of those affected by autism to be mentally retarded…. But when Meredyth Edelson, a researcher at Willamette University, went looking for the source of those statistics, she was surprised that she could not find anything conclusive. Many of the conclusions were based on intelligence tests that tend to overestimate disability in autistic people. “Our knowledge is based on pretty bad data,” she says.
This hidden potential was recently acknowledged by Laurent Mottron, a psychiatrist at the University of Montreal. In an article in the November 3 issue of Nature, he recounts his own experience working with high-functioning autistic people in his lab, which showed him the power of the autistic brain rather than its limitations. Mottron concludes that perhaps autism is not really a disease at all—that it is perhaps just a different way of looking at the world that should be celebrated rather than viewed as pathology (Evelith).
The article goes on to note, “The most commonly administered intelligence test, the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children (WISC) almost seems designed to flunk an autistic person: it is a completely verbal, timed test that relies heavily on cultural and social knowledge.” After numerous tests with different methods for measuring intelligence of many low-functioning nonverbal individuals with autism, Isabelle Soulieres, a researcher at Harvard University concluded:
They can solve really complex problems if you give them material that they can optimally process. “What this means, she says, is that schools are underestimating the abilities of autistic children all across the spectrum. The widespread use of the WISC in schools has helped set expectations of autistic kids too low….” (emphasis added) (Evelith).
The source of funding that keeps you trapped is government largesse quietly trading epic sacrifice of competent thinkers for compliant babysitters who are brainwashed to challenge your competence. Within this gulag, you have little chance of escape. Only a few heroic people have done it. The rest wait in a subculture quietly oppressing each soul. Inside of what is called special needs is prison. People you have known for years, since you were sentenced by the doctor or psychologist or therapist, will be there every day until they attain age 22. No one gets out of life skills into general education.
Even your bus trips to and from school are segregated. When the useful sound of the bell rings at the end of each day, you lifelessly occupy a bus teaming inside with stressed persons, individually trying to cope with the day’s trauma. We are as lost souls on a ship of the damned, heading to home ports until tomorrow. Only each of us has come into the recognition of each other’s extraordinary alertness, competence, worth as persons, and sound minds. You realize your teachers and aides will, with rare loving exceptions, never know who is in your body or your classmates’ skins. They were told there is nothing. Education for them in high school or before was all about compliance. Teaching is about compliance. Teachers and aides will lose their jobs if they acknowledge you as a competent being. Life in the prison is going to illegitimately reward you with political correctness by a validly issued certificate of incompetence. You can vote for benefits, but you have no education to get a job working to add value with a strong set of analytical skills from years in the silence.