|Sesame Street’s Abby Cadabby.|
Photo by Gil Vaknin for Sesame Workshop.
Talk about an embarrassing mismatch.
In an email message, I asked Sesame Workshop project representative Pam Hacker to reconsider any sort of partnership with Autism Speaks. Sesame Workshop needs to be aware that adults with autism do not accept it as the “leading autism science and advocacy organization.”
Instead, in the words of John Elder Robison, Autism Speaks is “the only major medical or mental health nonprofit whose legitimacy is constantly challenged by a large percentage of the people affected by the condition they target.”
I am among those adults on the spectrum who find Autism Speaks’ messages deeply offensive: specifically its constant emphasis that autistic people are burdens on the community and a source of despair to their families.
If Sesame Workshop is serious about eliminating stigma against autism, then Autism Speaks is the last organization it should have anything to do with.