I'm so outraged right now, I could possibly be described as apoplectic.

I am the father of a 2 year old son recently diagnosed with autism.
Our family has become very active in online communities related to autism
as we try to learn as much as possible, and to network with fellow parents
facing some of the same issues that we do.

We got a message this morning from one of those groups that was on the
one hand utterly unsurprising, but at the same time deeply revolting.

Our outgoing e-mail read in part:


In October of 2003, Unlocking Autism began a dialogue with both the
Republican National Committee and the Democratic National Committee
to bring the issues of autism to the forefront of the 2004 Presidential Election.

At the UA Power of 1.5 conference in April 2004, the Disability Grass Roots
Outreach Coordinators from both the RNC and DNC were invited to explain
to conference attendees where autism fit into each of the party platforms.
During the conference, we told both parties that we would shortly be issuing
a questionnaire to both Presidential Candidates with questions on how they
would handle the issues of the autism community if elected.

In May 2004, Unlocking Autism sent a copy of the questionnaire to the
Chairman of each party, the Disability Grassroots Outreach Coordinator of
each party, the Chairman of each campaign and the Disability Policy Advisor
for each campaign.  A final deadline of 90 days post administration of the
questionnaire was established giving each party and campaign a full
opportunity to respond.

One candidate met the deadline and one did not.

Unlocking Autism communicated with both parties on a completely equitable
basis.  When we spoke with the RNC or Bush-Cheney campaign about an issue,
we called and followed up on it with the DNC or Kerry-Edwards campaign,
and vice versa.  All communications were controlled through one contact so
that there was no opportunity for any political misappropriation.

Our goal is not to influence political action or endorse either candidate
but to provide the autism community with responses from the candidates
on seven consistent concerns that we talk to parents about on a daily
basis through the Unlocking Autism Call Center.

With a potential of 10,000,000 people of voting age in this country that
have someone they love in their life with autism, our community has more
influence than we might think possible if we would just put it to use.
This is the time that the candidates should really be paying attention to
issues that are near and dear to the heart of all Americans.

Our Community cannot remain silent and let our issues pass on by for
another four years.

Choose your candidate.  Volunteer on a campaign.  Get involved.

Make a Difference.

To find out more about the questions Unlocking Autism asked and the  answers
we received, visit our website at     http://www.unlockingautism.org/main.asp.


If you go to that page, you can click the links and find the 7-page,
thorough and thoughtful response from the Kerry campaign, and learn
that the  Bush campaign did not even bother to submit a response.

That speaks volumes, in my opinion.  These disgusting ideologues would
whip the (voting) public into a frenzy over a stem cell, but when it comes
to helping real human beings of the American persuasion who face
significant real-life challenges, they can't even be bothered to respond?!?

I'm not surprised--I'm just more convinced than ever of the utter moral
bankruptcy of this illegitimate, tragically incompetent junta, and of the

Issues like this bring into sharp contrast the reality that each vote has
tremendous, reaching significance.  In November, your vote can not only
help or harm yourself, but it also affects millions of your fellow citizens,
some of whom can be significantly disadvantaged by the results.

It is my opinion that the manner in which we treat the least fortunate
among us is the touchstone of our societal achievement.  Let's elect an
administration that will help turn our national priorities back towards
constructive rather than destructive values.

Thanks for all you're doing in support of that goal, and thanks to all the
readers of Bartcop.com that strive to be living examples of the sort of
change we want to see happen in our world.

Tarheel Dan

  return to  bartcop.com

Privacy Policy
. .