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“We need a cure for autism!”

Well you will never get it, no matter your stance on the subject. Autism is likely genetic and studies show that by six months of age there are already detectable changes in the brain that predict an autism diagnosis later in life. So even though we don’t know what autism is, it’s definitely something you’re born with and it is impossible to change that after the baby is born. Nothing will ever turn an autistic person who is alive into an allistic person. You can’t rewrite their entire brain anatomy.

So why do Autism Speaks talk of “the cure”? What they mean by cure is prenatal screening that will allow parents to abort fetuses with certain traits or genes. It means stopping autistic people from being born. It means getting rid of us even before a fetus develops a brain. It means that from their point of view not ever being alive (so essentially death) is better than existence as an autistic person.

That’s what you are saying when you’re advocating for a cure. “I wish you were never born”. “I wish your parents would have aborted you before you developed into a person”. “I think your existence is worse than death”. “I think you would be better off dead”. That is your message. That is your opinion.

Think about that next time you talk about a cure for autism.