With his comments last week, Michael Savage has started a fire. “I’ll tell you what autism is. In 99 percent of the cases, it’s a brat who hasn’t been told to cut the act out,” said Savage. “They don’t have a father around to tell them, ‘Don’t act like a moron. You’ll get nowhere in life. Stop acting like a putz. Straighten up. Act like a man. Don’t sit there crying and screaming, idiot.’” Savage, a national shock jock radio host, made these very disturbing comments on his show, and the firestorm has raged ever since on TV news reports, newspapers, including the New York Times and blogs like Age of Autism and AutismVox. Although Savage is second in listener draw behind Rush Limbaugh, it is speculated that the insensitive comments from Savage have drawn so much ire because the world is becoming much savvier about autism and its effects on our world. With many demanding that Savage be dismissed from his job and sponsors dropping his show, Savage issued this follow-up statement:
“My comments about autism were meant to boldly awaken parents and children to the medical community’s attempt to label too many children or adults as ‘autistic’.”
Parents of children with autism don’t need waking up. (They often times don’t get much sleep as it is because they are caring for their children.) Instead, his comments have solidified a passion at the heart of many of us - autism deserves more dollars towards research, ongoing therapy and care. It has also solidified another passion in many of us - outrage and a call to action against those like Savage. In addition, kids with autism don’t deserve to be called morons. They don’t deserve to be kicked off planes, out of restaurants and from supermarkets. But they will if people like Savage continue to promote a message they don’t truly understand. As we have done in the past, we must continue to do - fight for our children and for their future.
Children’s Care is a proud provider of services to children with autism as well as other special needs. Through our evidence based approach, we are committed to helping children reach their full potential.