Autism Speaks | Presidential Candidates Discuss Autism in Debate | October 16, 2008 #AutisticHistory #BanABA

Ban ABA

[Note: Shared for #AutisticHistory archive purposes. This is NOT An Autistic Ally.]


Presidential Candidates Discuss Autism in Debate

(New York – October 16, 2008) During the 3rd Presidential Debate, held on October 15 at Hofstra University, both candidates spoke about autism. In response to a question from CBS News’ Bob Schieffer, “why would the country be better off if your running mate became president” the senators made the following remarks:

Sen. McCain: …She (Sarah Palin) also understands special needs families. She understands that autism is on the rise. We’ve got to find out what’s causing it and we’ve got to reach out to these families and help them and give them the help they need as they raise these very special needs children. She understands that better than almost any American that I know. I’m proud of her. 

Sen. Obama: …I think it’s very commendable the work she (Sarah Palin) has done on behalf of special needs. I agree with that John. I do just want to point out that autism for example or other special needs will require some additional funding if we’re going to get serious in terms of research. That is something that every family that advocates on behalf of disabled children talks about. And if we have an across the board spending freeze we’re not going to be able to do it. 

In response to the Bob Schieffer’s question “Do you think the federal government should play a larger role in the schools and I mean federal money?” the senators made the following remarks:

Sen. Obama: I do think it is important for the federal government to step up and help local school districts do the things they need to do….We did the right thing by saying every school should provide education for children with special needs but we never followed through on the promise of funding, and that left local school districts very cash strapped. 

Sen. McCain: In town hall meeting after town hall meeting, parents come with kids, children, precious children who have autism. Sarah Palin knows about that better than most. And we’ll find, and we’ll spend the money on research to find the cause of autism, and we’ll care for these young children and all Americans will open their wallets and their hearts to do so.


More With Autism Votes



Note/Warning:

Autistic people have fought the inclusion of ABA in therapy for us since before Autism Speaks, and other non-Autistic-led autism organizations, started lobbying legislation to get it covered by insurances and Medicaid. 

ABA is a myth originally sold to parents that it would keep their Autistic child out of an institution. Today, parents are told that with early intervention therapy their child will either be less Autistic or no longer Autistic by elementary school, and can be mainstreamed in typical education classes. ABA is very expensive to pay out of pocket. Essentially, Autism Speaks has justified the big price tag up front will offset the overall burden on resources for an Autistic’s lifetime. The recommendation for this therapy is 40 hours a week for children and toddlers.

The original study that showed the success rate of ABA to be at 50% has never been replicated. In fact, the study of ABA by United States Department of Defense was denounced as a failure. Not just once, but multiple times. Simply stated: ABA doesn’t workIn study after repeated study: ABA (conversion therapy) doesn’t work. 

What more recent studies do show: Autistics who experienced ABA therapy are at high risk to develop PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions. Historically, the autism organizations promoting ABA as a cure or solution have silenced Autistic advocates’ opposition. ABA is also known as gay conversion therapy.


The ‘cure’ for Autistics not born yet is the prevention of birth. 

The ‘cure’ is a choice to terminate a pregnancy based on ‘autism risk.’ The cure is abortion. This is the same ‘cure’ society has for Down Syndrome. 

This is eugenics 2021. Instead of killing Autistics and disabled children in gas chambers or ‘mercy killings’ like in Aktion T4, it’ll happen at the doctor’s office, quietly, one Autistic baby at a time. Different approaches yes, but still eugenics and the extinction of an entire minority group of people.


Fact: You can’t cure Autistics from being Autistic.

Fact: You can’t recover an Autistic from being Autistic.

Fact: You can groom an Autistic to mask and hide their traits. Somewhat. … however, this comes at the expense of the Autistic child, promotes Autistic Burnout (this should not be confused with typical burnout, Autistic Burnout can kill Autistics), and places the Autistic child at high risk for PTSD and other lifelong trauma-related conditions.


[Note: Autism is NOT a disease, but a neurodevelopmental difference and disability.]


Fact: Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.


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