Note For Anyone Writing About Me

Guide to Writing About Me

I am an Autistic person,not a person with autism. I am also not Aspergers. The diagnosis isn't even in the DSM anymore, and yes, I agree with the consolidation of all autistic spectrum stuff under one umbrella. I have other issues with the DSM.

I don't like Autism Speaks. I'm Disabled, not differently abled, and I am an Autistic activist. Self-advocate is true, but incomplete.

Citing My Posts

MLA: Zisk, Alyssa Hillary. "Post Title." Yes, That Too. Day Month Year of post. Web. Day Month Year of retrieval.

APA: Zisk, A. H. (Year Month Day of post.) Post Title. [Web log post]. Retrieved from

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Tomorrow, and I'm nervous.

Tomorrow there is a speech contest in Chinese, and I am nervous. The public speaking aspect isn't wonderful- I tend to dislike public speaking in front of groups where I know most of the people. The fewer people I know from the group, the better.
Add in the fact that I told them I was going to talk about neurodiverity (神经多样性, in case anyone cares,) and I am even a bit more nervous. Yes, in the whole speech I referred to autistic people and otherwise neurodiverse people as "they" and "them." I never said "I" or "we."
And my topic choice still makes me nervous. I suppose I could back out, but I don't really want to. I want to live in a world where I don't feel the need to write my speech in they's and them's, but right now? Well, I'm applying for a program in China for next year, and I've seen what China is like with autism, often. I've seen the articles where a kid gets removed from a school after parent protests. That's not a place where I want to be out until it is much too late to do anything about it. Before my application is even started doesn't fit that.
I mostly like what I wrote. It's not a moral argument for the neurodiversity movement in any sense- it's simply a practical one. I point out that treating people like tragedies doesn't help anyone, that letting people do what they can, or at least letting people try, leads to a happier and more productive group. I point out that whatever you might think about there being a cure later (which, under the right circumstances, I'd actually be OK with people finding a way to rewire brains like that, but we're nowhere near those circumstances today,) there is none today. Since there is no way now to make neurodivergent people into neurotypical people, the smartest thing to do is to work with neurodivergent people as an important part of society, even from a purely pragmatic view.
Pointing out that pragmatism also has space for neurodiversity might not be the argument I usually see or the one I usually write, but I think it's one that we have space for, and that's actually what's coming up tomorrow. Tomorrow, you see, I'm putting up the actual text of my speech and a translation into English.

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