Friday, September 11, 2015

Don't Blame Us for the Bigotry We Receive

Many people try to convince others that the hatred we neurodivergent people are on the receiving end of is our fault. We are taught social skills curricula such as Social Thinking teaching us that our behaviors are a direct cause of people having "weird thoughts" about us, and organizations like Autism Speaks and NAMI convince neurotypicals that neurodivergent people are burdens. But bigotry is the fault of the perpetrator, not the victim.

There are more factors that affect people's reactions than another person's behavior. People's reactions to people's behavior has a lot to do with cultural attitudes, telling them what is socially appropriate behavior and what is socially inappropriate behavior, and what kinds of behavior are signs that someone may be dangerous. In a culture where we are taught that behavior of people of certain neurotypes are socially inappropriate or are a sign that someone is dangerous, those people are going to get a lot of hate. To solve that problem, we have to change society, not ourselves.

Also, if someone knows that someone is disabled, and they act ableist towards them because of that, this is definitely not the disabled person's fault. The only thing the disabled person is doing is existing as a disabled person.

The belief that neurodivergent people are to blame for being discriminated against is wrong in both ways. Not only is it incorrect, but it also harms people. It can lead to ND people to feel guilt when they are discriminated against, or even become depressed. ND people should know that no matter what other people say, they are not to blame.