Sunday, June 03, 2007

I resign from the Autism Hub

I no longer wish to be associated with a forum that cannot take criticism from within.

I no longer wish to associate with any cosy self congratulating world that does not accept the outsider.

I wish to be free to say what I will without any thought of that being associated with a particular "party line"

There are many more autistic blogs out there, than are represented by the hub, and for sure a lot of them I don't agree with either but what is wrong with that, let a hundred flowers blossom!

I will let my blog free float with the rest of the autistic blogosphere.

And my final word - Neurodiversity as a concept arose within a wider disability movement, it does not belong to Autism alone.

Two sides of a very particular argument are distorting the image of what disability means in a wider societal context where autism is just one construction or label pertaining to the way in which people are discriminated against, devalued, disenfranchised because of bodily and neural differences.

16 comments:

Beth said...

I wish you'd reconsider, Larry.

mike stanton said...

I think you misunderstand the Hub. It is not a forum or a group or a party with a particular line to promote. It is a loose collection of voices from within the autism community. All we have in common is that we reject the idea that autism is a pathological condition that can or should be cured.

We are all dissenters. We do not always agree with each other. For example, you and Michelle Dawson are at odds over the role and nature of scientific resarch into autism. Both your blogs co-exist on the hub with no need for either to accede to the other's view.

I think that one of the problems is that the Hub has been so successful in bringing us together and spreading our diverse views to a wider audience [at least in my case] that people expect us to act like a movement or a focus.

I do not think the Hub can do that. Groupings and organizations may emerge from the Hub rather like life energing from the primordial slime - so long as all the essential nutrients are there. I see you as one of those nutrients.

Fore Sam said...

Larry, I think you should ask the rabble rousers to resign instead and rename it the Asperger's Hub. Let Kev, Kathleen, Estee and a few others start the Anti Sanity Hub where they can bash parents who try to help kids who can't talk, read, write or toilet themselves.
You've made a good decision to disassociate yourself from these creeps.

Estee Klar-Wolfond said...

I will agree with Mike here. The HUB is not an organization. It has brought a grouping of individuals together who seem to share one goal which is to understand autism better and to work and share our ideas with both autistic and non autistic individuals. We must all remember the reason and the goal of the HUB.

Not everyone should agree as the best of communities (so eloquently expressed by Amanda) do disagree but continue the dialogue.

As a scholar, you are aware that many "dissenters" have had ferocious disagreements. But the dialogue is important and must continue.

David N. Andrews MEd (Distinction) said...

ForeSkin: "You've made a good decision to disassociate yourself from these creeps."

You probably gave him his best reason to stay. Now do us all a favour, John, and fall off the edge of your flat little earth.

BTW... JBJr for president? Thanks for the laugh!

Fore Sam said...

David, Someday you'll realize that you have hurt yourself by associating with people who make those with autism look like jackasses. It must be killing you to know that you can't vote against me, huh?

Anonymous said...

Larry, I'm sorry you're in this position, but I think you've made the right decision in resigning from the Autism Hub.
Anyone with any self respect would do the same thing.

This is very simple and very nasty.
Instead of keeping this debate/argument on a level of comments on your sites, Kevin Leitch decided to write a very personal post on the subject of you, with the aim of attacking, critisizing, and putting you down, while inviting a wider audience to read this post in the hope that he could elicit moral support for himself.

"However, I’d reached a pretty firm conclusion by this time on what Larry’s motivations were based on his words and deeds. He is an attention seeker who is annoyed that he isn’t the story. Throughout this entire episode he has made accusations that he is unable to backup, he has switched positions when exposed in his illogic and has demonstrated a nasty tendency to turn neurodiversity into The Larry Arnold Show.

The final straw for me was when he told me that the work that some of us had done with mercury/vaccines was actually misrepresenting autistic people and/or neurodiversity.

Since than I have been inundated with email, primarily from autistic people, telling me that my suspicions are correct. Larry like to ensure that Larry is the show. These are people who have known Larry online I’ve also heard from one person that Larry comes from a philosophical perspective that likes to blow things up and then see whats still standing to work with. That isn’t a philosophical perspective, thats just stupid."

Kevin Leitch, I hope you are totally ashamed of yourself for doing this.
No matter what your problem is with Larry. No matter how strongly you feel about him, how annoying you may find him, frustrating or even angering, you did not need to write a post devoted to critisizing him and publicly humiliating him.
Why did you do that?
If you find larry to be, as you say: "a pseudo intellectual poseur", or "duplicitous – dishonest and narcissistic" then that is your problem, and Larry has a right to voice his opinion, whether you agree with it or not.

I was particularly disturbed by this:

"Since than I have been inundated with email, primarily from autistic people, telling me that my suspicions are correct. Larry like to ensure that Larry is the show."

You are like the school bully intimidating a more vulnerable kid, saying "I don't like you and I know lots of other people who don't like you either"

Do you have any idea of how hurtful you are being?

I think you have made a big mistake with this post and people will see you in a different light from now on.
I think your post says much more about your narcissism, intollerance to criticism, argument, and to the personality of an autistic man, than it could ever say about Larry.

Larry, you have not got "doormat" tattooed across your forhead, and anyone who thinks they have the right to treat you as such, by trampling over your feelings, need to think seriously about what sort of person they are.
YOU DID NOT DESERVE THIS.

Alyric said...

Gee wow! Would you look at the troll? How sweet:) There there, nice trolly wolly :) What a clever little beastie.

and enough of that.

Come on Larry - rise up and be an autistic and do not resign from the Hub! I'm with Mike on this one. The Hub is a facilitated being not a leadership entity - that's what makes it so good. And you can learn a lot from some of the parent blogs. Mainly what a social conversation looks like and how it works, which is not to be sneezed at. This is what diversity looks like and that includes you.

Of course I will argue with you more than agree with you, naturally.

Anonymous said...

"You are like the school bully..." I have to agree. I was shocked to see an educated adult launch such a cruel, over-the-top, ad hominem attack on someone in a public place. I don't think Larry said anything particularly offensive, but even if he did, it could only be taken as offensive on an intellectual level. He didn't insult any individual. The massive firebombing on Larry personally was entirely uncalled for.

Jannalou said...

Larry, when the e-zine's web site goes up, I hope you'll let us link to your blog, maybe kind of the way the hub does.

Yes, that autism magazine looks to be on the horizon. I need to purchase the domain etc. but we have someone who's willing to administer the site (design etc.) and Sammi is going to do some art stuff. I hope you'll submit an article and some photos.

The first issue will come out this fall, and its focus will be connection.

ballastexistenz said...

Jannalou, anyone on the net can link to anything on the net. Permission isn't necessary. It's only if you copy things you have to ask.

Anonymous said...

Larry, I think you have answered Kev's persistent questioning very well.
You did back up what you were trying to say, which was that the term neurodiversity covers more than just autism.

Kevin asked for examples of these ND conditions and you provided him with an adequate answers.
Kevin then played stupid and repeatedly asked for "examples" which you had already given.

Kev's real beef with you is that you have suggested that devoting too much time and effort into disproving the autism=mercury theory is a huge distraction from what you see as 'autism advocacy' and the services and resources you are advocating for.

Please tell me if I am wrong about this Larry.

You said:

"The anti mercury argument on the hub has actually done us a disservice, because as most of us know, the pro mercury argument is arrant nonsence, but what has happened is that neurodiversity has been misrepresented to the opposition as a result of this unbalanced represenation of what neurodiversity is about and we have been falsely characterised and further vilified as a result by another group of cybercitizens, who then go on to further misrepresent neurodiversity to the casual reader who stumbles on there world knowing nothing of neurodiversity.

It is possible to be within the neurodiversity movement and believe that mercury causes autism as it is possible to hold different political opinions within the neurodiversity movement. That is not what defines it."

You couldn't possibly have put anymore "meat on the bones of your accusations" than you have.
Kev, what do you want, blood?

While your message was already crystal clear, you were pressed to comment further:

"Yes this section of the internet, hub call it what you will is misrepresenting neurodiversity to the opposition because "we" are not representing a wide enough spectrum of neurodiversity and have allowed the impression to proceed that neurodiversity is about autism only and that the creed of neurodiversity is only to prove that mercury has nothing to do with our being here."

I think Kev has spat his dummy out because you has disagreed with what happens to be precisely his agenda. And he wants to push this adgenda not as an autistic adult, but as a parent. (another bone of contention).

Arguing and focusing on disproving mercury poisoning as the cause autism is not doing any of us any good or getting us anywhere. We have wasted far too much time and energy on this tail chasing exercise, and I think every member of Autism Hub who do not agree with or adhere to this adgenda have been used by Kevin Leitch.

Kev, your views have been challenged by a genuine autism advocate who has stood up to you fair and square, and you have stormed off in a huff.
It's about time you stopped pretending to be something you're not.

"OK, thats it. I’m out of here. Please count me out of neurodiversity."

Coward.

Anonymous said...

Larry,
I hope that some people see that they were a bit mean and apologize in due time.

I also hope that after your caught up on your work that you decide to keep writing, even if not as part of the hub.

All,
I have to agree with Amanda at least asking why people get so vicious, though it was stated in different terms.

I beleive that we all think we are right, and until we learn a bit more acceptance, and that we aren't right all the time, others are going to have adverse reactions that make us angry.

While I am not perfect, and realize others might not like what context I draw this from, I like to recall the words of Yoda, though I may not be recalling them verbatim.

Fear leads to Anger,
Anger leads to Hate,
Hate leads to suffering,
This is the path to the Darkside.

Patrick

Jannalou said...

I know you don't have to ask permission to link to places, but I do consider it to be one of those things I do as a courtesy. I like people to know they're being linked to, because sometimes a link would be misrepresented.

Anonymous said...

ballastexistenz said...

"Jannalou, anyone on the net can link to anything on the net. Permission isn't necessary. It's only if you copy things you have to ask."

Funny you should be the one to know that. However its not only things, if you copy people you also have to ask.

Also, please learn the meaning of the following and the differences between them:

advocacy, activism, and dirty politicking

For a change instead of your usual opportunistic use of another's situation, you really should show Larry here what a good friend you are to him with some true solidarity and leave the Autism Hub too.

laurentius rex said...

It has been pointed out to me that the above post pertains to something of an on line vendetta that is going on in another part of the blogoshpere I would prefer not to draw attention too.

I don't really like private wars being brought into my blog, however and I have no intention of taking sides on any of them, suffice it to say one does not need permission to copy a person, if they did there would be a fashion police that arrested everybody for going out an d buying the same clothes that some celebrity wore on TV the night before, and I have no intention of pursuing Wendy Lawson to the ends of the earth because she has the same colour lenses as me and writes poetry, this whole thing is a non issue and I have already drawn more attention to the subject than it deserves.

For what it is worth I would like to see a little more imitation going on. If people stopped being a*holes and started imitating civilised human beings instead.