Okay, I am tired of being nice about this, so I will just say it bluntly. If you tell me that you “prefer” so-called person-first language when referring to autistic people, I am going to tell you to fukk off and fukk yourself. Today, I have just found another reason for this.
Towards the end of last year, I was homeless. This period of homelessness started the day after my birthday that year, and did not come to an end until about mid-December, about six and change weeks after it started. Prior to and during this time, I was brought to the attention of Housing New South Wales, hereafter referred to as Housing NSW, and placed on the high-priority list. Whilst I was homeless, I thought it would be wise to return to the part of Sydney that I am most familiar with, the Central Western sector.
I have attended Housing NSW offices in Dee Why, West Ryde, and Parramatta. And I have to tell people of Parramatta, you are being treated like filth. The staff there have zero negotiation skills, no sense of courtesy even when it might suit their interests, and an attitude that beggars belief. To them, the individual needing support in order to not find themselves living on the street or prostituting themselves to afford ridiculous rents is automatically a criminal.
The “doctor” that they insisted I go and see, well, I have already talked about that. But when a person has been so badly abused and mistreated throughout every stage of his life for being autistic, it becomes an intrinsic part of his identity. Just as was the case pre-diagnosis, everything he does, says, thinks, or feels post-diagnosis is governed by being autistic. So when I say “so what makes you think you have autism?” is the single most offensive thing I have heard post-diagnosis, understand my full meaning.
Garcide, if you are reading this, know this: if I ever see you outside of the little hospital sanctuary you are no doubt hiding in, I will kill you. I will make you feel things so ugly and terrible that you will beg to die long before you do.
Read the statement I just made, and the question I just quoted. Oh, and Housing NSW, the above applies no matter what you do to me. In fact, if you do try to do more to me, I will only grow more determined to make sure others do not suffer this kind of treatment. Garcide is either a dead man or he is gone from Western Sydney. It really is that simple. But the point here is simple. How badly do you think you have to offend someone before they start to contemplate the logistics of shoving a glass cricket stump into your anus and kicking you in random points of your lower body to try and make it break?
If you guessed the point to which using so-called person-first language offends me, then congratulations, you qualify as being clever enough to be allowed to breathe.
Now, you might have guessed that so-called person-first language upsets me very badly. Well, you would be right. But you would also think people would not have the sense to try and push it at me as being a matter of preference. In that, you would be wrong. There are several problems with the “it’s a matter of preference, so I get to call you a person with autism” position. In no particular order:
- You do not live in a vacuum
I always love to challenge preference-defenders to tell me that we live in a vacuum, and that their so-called preference does not have a real and quantifiable effect upon me, leave alone any at all. But they never step up to the challenge.
So-called person first language does have a very real and easily quantified effect upon people who do not use it. It should be readily obvious from the words I use: separationist language. Imagine if someone started referring to you with words that separated you from the most intrinsic part of your identity. Imagine you were called “…with blackness”, “…with femaleness”, “…with redhairedness” or so forth. As an adult or adolescent, you would be pretty angry. As an older child, you might start to wonder long and hard about why people do this. If they started from the day you were born, however, it would have a very noticeable and documented effect.
You would begin to think of the defining characteristic as something separate to you, and depending on how the words are spoken, perhaps even something that is desired to be removed.
If you think that teaching a child to think this way about being autistic is any less despicable than teaching a child to think this way about being black, about being Asian, or having a chroma key in their eyes or hair that is not to your liking, you are wrong. Dead wrong.
There is also a reason why I draw such parallels as black, female, or born with follicles that sprout hair in an unusual colour. You see, in spite of how certain kinds of parental unit seem to want to live with their noses up their children’s arses, children who are having difficulties adjusting to the situations that form the basis of their lives spend a lot of time self-reflecting. Why am I being treated this way? (In some cases:) Why are my parents treating me in this manner? (In many cases:) Why are my siblings treating me in this manner?
Many answers can come to mind. But I am going to stick with two possibilities in order to illustrate what I am getting at in this document.
When a child thinks “I have autism”, their self-reflections will turn on a certain framing. They will believe “I am bad because I have autism, and thus deserve to be treated this way”.
I do not believe it to be coincidence at all that Autism Speaks For Normie Assholes and all other curebie cults or other organisations hostile to the civil rights of the autistic refer to autism as if it is a separate entity to the person.
When any person, child, adult, or adolescent says to themselves, “I am autistic, and these people are treating me badly because they are too ignorant, stupid, or both, to know better”, it changes everything about how they deal with the problem.
I know this because I have experienced it for myself, albeit in a different form. The parameters are slightly different when you think everyone is mistreating you because you have what I like to call credibility deficit disorder or whatever the go-to label is this week, but the result is the same.
Let me reiterate. I only have to read the words “person with autism”, and my whole body shudders violently. I feel surges in my skin of an electrical nature. My limbs tremble in a manner that will have the diabetes brigade jumping all over me. Which, of course, in turn prompts more shaking, more rage, more surging. Did I just describe being threatened with rape? Or being called “person with autism”? Well, normie, I am glad you asked, because to me, there is no difference whatsoever.
People threaten each other with violence every day. Sadly, some classes of people live with being threatened every day.
What makes all the difference is the credibility of the threat. Autism Speaks For Normie Assholes cons people who should, and could, know better out of so much money every year that they literally can have laws written for them to segregate the autistic. To forbid the autistic from congregating with anyone who is not autistic, and so on. When Suzanne Wright writes to the public that she would like to see a day when autism is only a word in history books, it is a criminal act because autistic individuals everywhere know that she has access to the money necessary to enact an autistic holocaust.
(This, by the way, Housing NSW, is what I am talking about when I say that your Parramatta branch threatened me first. They say a “doctor” can basically verbally rape me with impunity. This is why I would gladly break into that “doctor”‘s house, shove croquet balls up his arse, get out the mallet, and use him for a game.)
When you either call me a “…with autism” or tell me that you call me that because you prefer to be called it and I just have to suck it up, what you are doing to me is threatening me with something like rape. It makes me regret not having slit Garcide’s throat for asking me what makes me think I “have autism”.
Again, I hate language-policing to a degree you cannot imagine. But until we really do live in vacuums where your choice to call me something that separates me from what I have been since I was born does not affect me, I am going to have to tell you that it is not okay to use separationist language to refer to me. It really is that simple. Your choice has consequences for me that cannot be borne.
- Your language is inaccurate
I am going to make a few statements here that I make out loud in front of people.
I am not a hamburger. I am not a plate of fries. I am not ice-cream. I am not a donut.
Autism is not a seasoning, a topping, or a condiment. It is a term used to describe a number of variances in the structure and mapping of the Human brain that can have a lot of varied and interesting results. (This, by the way, Housing NSW in Parramatta, is another reason why Garcide’s behaviour is not acceptable. Autism is not a competition. Just because I am not shitting on the floor and hitting myself when I see steaming water does not mean I necessarily need any more or less help.)
I expect that if one were to conduct an MRI upon my headspace, they would discover a number of interesting things. For one, I am damned certain that my olfactory receptors are so close to non-existent as makes no odds. For another, my amygdalae are probably at least fifty percent smaller than the expected norm. I am also pretty certain that the part of my brain that deals with optical information is considerably larger than people believe it should be, and that it is fused with parts of my brain that deal in other information.
This is not something that any person in their right mind can ever expect me to think of as being a separate entity to me.
Let me contrast that with a few things that I would gladly be rid of. Around this time last year, I underwent an operation under local anaesthesia to remove a skin cancer from the back of my left shoulder. The sensations of pressure as cells were dug out of my body and an opening was cut deep enough to require two layers of stitching was bad enough.
The pain after the anaesthesia wore off, well, it is like a burn. One’s skin literally feels as if it is on fire. And the hassle involved in keeping a wound that is on the back of one’s shoulder clean when one has no help to turn to, I will not even try to ramble about.
This is a picture taken of the site of my facial skin cancer after the skin graft had formed a solid patch.
The reason there is so much hair around it (which also later got very infected and caused further discomfort) is because I was afraid of lacerating the graft and destroying it.
I will be brief about my diabetes. I want to kill people who talk about it to me after I have told them specifically that I do not want to hear about it because I have bigger and more immediate problems you asshats.
When you call me “…with autism”, you are stating to me that you think of the configuration of my brain in the same terms as my history of skin cancer and my diabetes. I could call you all sorts of pejoratives, with words like “filthy” and “disgusting” thrown in for emphasis. I will never be physically able to offend you over the course of a thousand years this way to anywhere near the degree that you offend me by telling me that you think of my neurology in the same way you think of my cancers or my diabetes.
Which is what you do every time you say “…with autism”. My autism is not a separate thing to me, and I will not suffer to have you thinking of it as such.
- One size does not fit all
Even more galling is when people tell me that other “disabled” people prefer “person-first” (or person last, rather) language, thus I should, too. Sorry, no.
First of all, autism is not a disability, but rather a reversion disability. Try this exercise on for size. Imagine that everyone in the world is blind except maybe one in a thousand or less. What would the result be? Would the blind be given the keys to the kingdom because they are the numerical majority? Or would the social majority exploit and enslave them?
Now imagine that only one in a hundred and fifty were normies. Imagine a world where music stores like JB Hi-Fi are no longer allowed to blare music at irritating volumes with the intent of battering them into buying submission. Imagine a world where advertisements based on fear were illegal. Imagine a world where things were built to last, and computers were designed to work reliably instead of ask the user to chuck money into them to keep working. (These are just the few examples I could think up whilst I was typing.) I could go on all day, but the world where the autistic are the numerical and social majority is one that even most autistic people cannot conceive of.
You may have gotten the impression by now that I consider autism to be very different from paraplegia, quadraplegia, blindness, deafness, or pretty much anything else that so-called person-first language lumps it in with. You are correct.
Moreover, as I have stated in other words, normies want all disabled folks to think of disability as being the worst thing on Earth. “Oh noes, I has a disability! Whatever will be my life be?”. Well, before I was removed from the (sub)urban environment I find my place in and certain people tried to make me see their hick bumfukk shithole as the be-all and end-all of my world (sound familiar, pissface-firsters?), I did not think my life was really all that bad. It was not great, but the idea of being able to go in a positive direction was still there.
Then several things happened. First, I became aware that I am autistic. Second, I became aware of what a curebie was. Boy, that was a fun time. I would tell you I am exaggerating when I say that my feelings at the sight of curebies and their hideous lies were not similar to those that Adolf Hitler wrote of regarding his early experiences with Jews, but it would be a lie.
The funny thing is, I never saw anyone write “…have autism” or “…with autism” until I saw curebies do it.
I really wish I could make you understand just how upsetting it is to be separated in verbiage from what makes me me. But unfortunately I do not have my favourite character’s powers, and words are insufficient to the task.
Your homework assignment for this essay is to watch some footage of children dying of starvation or disease. Maybe that will feel horrible enough to approximate the sensations I get when one calls me “…with autism”.