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Re: re. RMS

On 05/04/2021 16:29, Miles Fidelman wrote:
Given that Friday was Autism Awareness Day, it might be worth noting that RMS is clearly "on the spectrum" - and well known since the days he slept in his office at MIT (my student days).

I am a father to a child diagnosed with ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder). During diagnosis, as we went over the (surprisingly objective) criteria for ASD, I realized it is more likely than not that I am a case of undiagnosed ASD (though probably more minor case than my daughter). It is from that position that I have this to say:
Why is it that nobody ever gives him any leeway for that?

I absolutely positively reject the notion expressed here. The way we interact with others is 100% our responsibility. While I completely reject the blanket statement made by Thomas, if you want a leadership position, particularly one where you manage other people, be ready to forego any alleviating circumstances you might otherwise be able to claim.

We should show compassion to others' struggles. We should do so whether those struggles have a DSM definition or not. We should also expect our leaders to show humanity towards people they have power over. Again, we should do so whether or not DSM is involved in the process.

There are some norma-deviations in the DSM manual that hinder ability to tell right from wrong. However:

1. Autism isn't one of them.

2. If you want to apply to _that_ exception, then you absolutely shouldn't be in a position of power.

I am raising my child to know that asking for special consideration in that regard means paying the price of not achieving what others can. I am instructing anyone interacting with my child to show understanding to my child's blunders, but not to accept them. An Autistic person making an insensitive or hurtful comment toward others still leaves someone hurt. We can understand why the comment was made, but we shouldn't accept that it's okay to hurt others.


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