Monday, March 19, 2012

The words said for George.

My angry post was for me. Not for anyone else.

But this was what I wrote for George. It is, after all, about him. Kathryn Hedges graciously read it for me at the vigil in California:

I hate writing for murdered people. It does no good. They're still dead, and people always try to make what I say all about themselves & then they get all mad and hateful at me. But it isn't about them. And it isn't about me, either. It's about the person who is dead but shouldn't be.

This time, it's about George, a pleasant 22 year old man who will never see 23. Before George, it was Katie. It was Christopher. It was Ulysses. It was 100s of autistics before them, know and unknown to me.

These murders are not mercy killings. They are murders, and I am 100% confident in saying that no parent who truly loves their child can kill them. Love does not work that way.

Those of you who are not autistic may be inclined to sympathize with George's murderer. Maybe what you know about autism is tragedy-and-terror style awareness, all about devastation and loss. Maybe you know her, maybe you liked her. Maybe she was your neighbour. Maybe you can't wrap your head around the reality that you had coffee with a murderer. Maybe trying to find mitigating factors makes it easier to integrate that you know someone who killed her son.

Those of you who are autistic are probably feeling more like what I feel-saddened that yet another of our number was killed. Maybe, like me, you are disgusted at the race to exonerate the murderer in the media. And, if you are like me, you are terrified that everyone is blaming lack of services, stress, everything but “HIS MOTHER SHOT HIM” for George's death.

I hate writing for murdered people. Again and again and again I have to defend the very right of the victim to be treated as a human being in all reports, for his very personhood and the personhood of myself and those I hold dear. This stuff shouldn't need saying. My outrage should be the norm, not the exception.

The tragedy here is not autism. The tragedy here is that George, like countless autistics before him, was murdered. The tragedy is that people feel more for his killer than they do for him.

5 comments:

Dixie Redmond said...

Well written.

BiolArtist said...

Thank you for allowing me to have the honor of reading for you at the vigil.

Phil said...

The tragedy here is that for some strange reason, Americans are beginning to pity and glorify murderers these days, in the last month, everybody from thugs to mass murdering soldiers are being thrown pity-parties across the web, on television and on the radio.

I think I know why. America has become transformed into a brand new kind of fascist state. One that has nothing to do with swastikas or master race theories. Nothing to do with Germany or Hitler.

It's "seig heil" can be seen across the web written as "Epic Fail." It's swastika is "the red white and blue." It's 'racial theory' is nothing so complicated, it is simply:survival of the fittest, every man for himself, snooze you lose.

Americans do not want to believe that their soldiers can commit rape and murder, and if they do "they're just blowing off steam, they were stressed."

If they feel sorry for the mothers who kill off their children, well, these sick 'co-dependants' were nothing but little parasites they will tell you, and every person has a right to the life that they want.

Ayn Rand's moral objectivism and "Atlas Shrugged" is the new Mein Kampf, and I will add that I believe at this point in our history is when the collective has decided that murder has no value in morality, it is neither good nor evil, it is simply an action of the strong asserting itself upon the weak. They no longer view 'murder' as a crime, other than that if you "get caught" there will certainly be some 'stressful' consequences to the murderer himself, but that is about all. We don't hate murderers anymore, it is simply a kind of nuisance, where we decide politically what to do with a 'murderer' after the crime. If we see it as being part of the American Moral Objectivism, in other words, Sgt. Slaughter killed those "ay-rabs" because, well, he had him some darn good reasons, well, we should feel sorry for the poor man who now has to face a trial. Just like Zimmerman. After all, he "offed" a "social parasite."

Autistics are next. They don't serve the state.

abailin said...

This. Thank you.

I disagree with Phil about the causes.

And, as a woman with disabilities who counts myself staunchly in the camp of the autism allies, I do have one thought in defense, if you will, of the "we need better services" discussion.

I study psychology. I don't entirely believe in free will. More importantly, I feel that blame is not a helpful response to crime, no matter how accurate it may be. My reasons can be found here: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/07/the-brain-on-trial/8520/

As far as I'm concerned, there are 2 important questions to be asked any time someone does something horrific, like rape or killing someone in a drunk driving accident or murdering their child.

1) Can anything be done to correct the situation? Sadly, the answer is often NO.

2) What can be done to keep this from happening again? And here's where I think the "we need more services" argument has a place. Not as an excuse or an amelioration, but as a call to action. Along with a shit-ton more of "for fuck's sake, please accept people with disabilities for who we are."

I hope this isn't too out of place. I do not, in any way, want to take away from your main point. I agree wholeheartedly that KILLING PEOPLE LIKE US IS NOT OK.

Neurodivergent K said...

@abailin
In the wake of a murder, as a response to the murder, "we need more services" is not ok.
"we need more services", in that context, is a "give me what I want or I can kill my child".
That's not an acceptable mindset.