environmentally correct

anonymous asked:

is autism a genetic thing? like, my mom is autistic, and i'm autistic as well. does it pass down through genes? if i have a kid some day, is there a high chance of the kid being autistic? ((i have nothing wrong with the idea of my kid being autistic btw, i know it kinda comes off like that the way i asked this im sorry,, im just genuinely curious about if this is a genetic thing??))

We’re fairly certain there is a genetic component to it although we’re not sure how much. But, generally, if you’re autistic there’s a greater chance for anyone you’re related to being autistic as well, that includes children. The chances go up the more people in your family who are autistic as that is a pretty good indicator it’s floating around in your genes.

- Os

Autism is a very complicated thing in that it is an epigenetic disability. Unlike many disabilities, autism cannot be tracked to a single, identifiable mutation in a specific gene. Rather, autism is made up of a wide variety of genetic mutations, and combinations of mutations. What makes it epigenetic is that environmental triggers are still required at specific developmental stages to activate the genetic traits in such a way that they present as autism.

To be clear, when we’re talking about environmental triggers in autism, we’re not talking about things out and about in the world we live in. We are talking about the in utero environment, and the hormonal, genetic, and physiological triggers that happen in utero during the developmental process.

For example, when Simon Baron-Cohen talks about the “extreme male brain theory” (gross name, if you ask me), what he is talking about is a genetically programmed response to in utero exposure to testosterone - specifically, to much testosterone at a specific point in brain development can trigger the faulty genes that leads to autism. It would not, however, happen without the complex, multi-gene mutations, nor would it happen without the correct environmental (in utero) trigger (overexposure to testosterone during brain development).

So yes, autism is very much a genetic thing, it very much can be passed along family lines, but is also much more complicated than that. And, as Os said, we’re not sure just how much is strictly genetic - It’s there for sure, but how much is still under heavy research.

For a basic scientific / academic primer on what epigenetics is, check out this link.

- Sam


Donald Trump plans to cut NASA’s “politicized” climate research division 

  • President-elect Donald Trump reportedly plans to yank funding from climate change research conducted by NASA.
  • Senior adviser Bob Walker described it as an attempt to cut down on “politicized science.”
  • Walker said the president-elect favors exploration of deep space, and has vowed to explore the entire solar system by the end of the century.
  • “Politically correct environmental monitoring,” Walker said, has no place at NASA.
  • Meanwhile, Trump said this on the Paris Climate Agreement: “I’m looking at it very closely. … I have an open mind to it.” Read more

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Donald Trump is poised to eliminate all climate change research conducted by Nasa as part of a crackdown on “politicized science”, his senior adviser on issues relating to the space agency has said.
Nasa’s Earth science division is set to be stripped of funding in favor of exploration of deep space, with the president-elect having set a goal during the campaign to explore the entire solar system by the end of the century. This would mean the elimination of Nasa’s world-renowned research into temperature, ice, clouds and other climate phenomena. Nasa’s network of satellites provide a wealth of information on climate change, with the Earth science division’s budget set to grow to $2bn next year.
Bob Walker, a senior Trump campaign adviser, said there was no need for Nasa to do what he has previously described as “politically correct environmental monitoring”.


  1. “Politically correct environmental monitoring” is a sentence that doesn’t even mean anything. “Politically correct” has become a term used to discredit an idea, action or request that can’t be dismantled by other means, due to lack of any logical reasoning that could seriously challenge or question its legitimacy. To undermine it, it’s then implied that the idea has no practical, positive value other than that of being politically correct (and what does that mean, “polite”? To whom? Who are we unknowingly trying to please? And why would someone care?) “Politically correct” now simply means inconvenient to someone. So environmental monitoring is now “politically correct” because fighting climate change is inconvenient to the men in this new American government. How is environmental monitoring even a question of political correctness in the first place?
  2. For someone working in science, this new climate of validation of “the illogical” is heartbreaking . It’s against not just the most basic common sense, but the intellectual evolution we’ve been building for centuries. These people don’t give a fuck that what they’re saying makes no sense. It’s not that they don’t understand climate change, really; it’s that they don’t give a fuck. And this is true not only in this particular case regarding NASA. All over the world, it’s like a modern day Middle Age. Religion - from christianity to islam - over civilization and culture; personal belief and prejudice over facts; old ill-suited traditions over society’s evolution. I don’t know if we’ve all collectively and silently decided that we want to end it now and die, but if we did, we sure as hell want to take as many people as we can with us and let no one escape this apocalypse we’re craving.
  3. We’re not moving to another planet anytime soon, no matter how much money NASA has for deep space exploration. Maybe a couple of people will go to Mars in a few years, but the rest of us are staying here. We have all the time to die on this Earth.

That moment when you realize car-centric sprawl was planned intentionally and was mandated by zoning laws — a social/economic experiment that allowed for a segregation of classes and a quick return on the development of cheap land.

And that future generations are now left with the task of correcting the environmental and social damage of that sprawl.

So funny!! :) have a great day!