Importance of not doing “Autistic Pride Day”: still harmfully sourced

The demise of the arrogant tyranny cult that had hurt many spectrumites, “Aspies For Freedom” in its original membership movement form, in 2013, was for celebration as a victory for fair feeling against evil. It was not cause for complacent forgetting about them, but for eternal vigilance. For they continued to have fingers in other projects, they continued to want to have an influence on autistic life, and at present they again have a site, but not a forum.

They invented Autistic Pride Day + their new site still seeks influence from boasting of that. THIS MAKES IT ETHICALLY WRONG TOWARDS EMOTIONAL SAFETY, ANYWHERE IN THE ENTIRE AUTISTIC COMMUNITY, FOR ANYONE TO CHOOSE TO HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH AUTISTIC PRIDE DAY knowing its origins.

Those who don’t know its origins or the story of AFF, + in all innocence have organised events attached to the name of Autistic Pride Day, must not be blamed: but when they find out, they have a duty to feel conned + let down, to pass on the bad news so that all the innocent folks who their activity reached become forewarned about AFF, + move away from using the name again in future.

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The following attitude, posted in a forum –

I am not at all concerned with the 2 alluded-to individuals and their emotional responses and leadership style that you describe. I don’t know who they are. As this is the first time anyone has drawn my attention to these individuals I don’t think they have any meaningful significance in how these events are now organised; what they mean for those who take part; nor how these present-day events would be perceived by the vast majority of people who learn of them but do not take part in them. These people may well have been the originators of the idea but are otherwise entirely irrelevant. That’s my take on it, but each to their own

– is wrong + breaches emotional safety. Its error is to imagine AFF is safely in the past to be forgotten about. There is a duty against contributing to suicide risks not to follow the reasoning quoted: instead to take from the renewed online presence of AFF’s leaders the importance of not attaching to or crediting something that came from them. Though it is nice that the poster dismisses the AFF leaders as irrelevant, it is inaccurate to think that because he personally has not heard of them they no longer have significance. That is indeed an autistic failure of empathy + of perspective to realise that significances can vary from place to place.

So, the action of Autism Rights Group Highland, a society in north Scotland, in  persuading Scottish government to fly the Autistic Pride Day flag this year, of course telling them nothing about AFF, is as immorally cynical a stunt of self-promotion as the pigs in the ending to George Orwell’s Animal Farm, who become indistinguishable from the farmers. ARGH did this aggressively unilaterally, without a word at least 2 other grassroots groups who might have responded with disagreement.

Here is a tweet that a campaigningly active autistic wrote, fairly recently, against some other items used by businesses to make a show of concern for autism, because they were linked to Autism Speaks, the notorious cure-and-drug organisation that all self-advocating spectrumites hate: “Why are you supporting autism speaks?? #ActuallyAustistic people across the world have rejected the LIUB campaign as highly offensive. National autism charities and landmarks have dissociated themselves from this campaign, yet you promote it? What the heck?

– Consider that, why it mattered to the sender to send that message: how it’s about others carelessly overriding our own experience and slickly promoting a harmful enemy in our name, the kicking aside of real needs that is felt from that. So that it matters to ordinary autistics’ needs to stand up against it. That describes exactly why it matters to ordinary autistics’ needs to stand up against Autistic Pride Day too, and to care about its monstrous origins.

15 Jun 2018

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