RationalWiki:Articles for deletion/Autism Uncensored

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Autism Uncensored | Result: Deleted[edit]

Autism Uncensored (edit|talk|history|protect|delete|links|watch|logs) – (View log)


  1. Reason Hastur! (talk) 06:42, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  2. A batshit hatchet job, which:
    Flat out accuses someone of viciously abusing her autistic child;
    Includes a final section "Zack", written directly to the child himself (!!);
    Is approx. 50% sourced to the Twitter / blog posts of a "Sci-Fantasy" author, with autistic children of their own, and strong opinions on the correct way of raising them;
    Completely ignores other coverage which indicates the "abuser" is sane & well-adjusted, and that the "abused" child made excellent progress and is functioning quite happily.
    For clarity's sake, and because people are fucking lazy at following links, I've appended the most relevant evidence in a new subsection below "Goat". Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 12:43, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  3. Kevs Ping! 13:27, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  4. Article subject doesn’t seem like that big of a deal really. Seems like the book’s primary fault is just bad writing. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 14:40, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  5. @QuietLuna should be free to ressurrect the article and move it to essayspace if they ever come back, but I don’t see why our default shouldn’t still be to delete. Christopher (talk) 16:29, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  6. Poorly sourced and written, even if it has a bit of missionality deep down. It's probably best to delete it. Gangster Computer God (talk) 16:57, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  7. Sourcing issues aside, the article is more focused on moralizing than debunking. ☭Comrade GC☭Ministry of Praise 17:04, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  8. The page is lacking in quality. If it were almost all QuietLuna's work, it could just be moved to Essayspace or Draftspace. Since others have edited it away from QuietLuna's original, QuietLuna has the option of putting a version in Essayspace or improving it in Draftspace. I suspect that QuietLuna is the only editor of the page with much actual familiarity with the book. Bongolian (talk) 17:27, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  9. 𝒮𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓃𝑒 talk 21:57, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  10. No, I don't think there should be moralizing here on an issue that we have and always will have limited information on. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 22:03, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  11. LeucippusTalk 23:04, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  12. Kauri0.o (talk) 02:12, 5 May 2021 (UTC)
  13. At first, confused. Then I read it, referenced the sources and came to the conclusion that the article is mostly based around the opinions of a single person on this book on how to raise autistic people and it reeks of "look at this awful thing, you should understand immediately why it's awful". Yes ABA is bad (it's Pavlov training an autistic kid, which with positive rewards isn't bad, but some of the negative stuff is actual abuse), but nothing in this page tells me that. Instead its mostly moralizing about how awful an abusive mother is, which yeah I feel for the kid, but we're not Child Abuse Wiki. We have a mission and moralizing about abuse is kinda not the mission, unless we're discussing it in a manner related to the mission. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 09:43, 5 May 2021 (UTC)
    That said, this may freely be put into essayspace if people would rather want that, I'd say it's a perfect fit for it, I just don't think it belongs near mainspace. Techpriest (I am Alpharius! / Pencil.png / Tux icon.png / Shield.png) 09:44, 5 May 2021 (UTC)


  1. This AfD is a dumb attempt at whitewashing.𝔖𝔲𝔪𝔪𝔞 𝔄𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔬𝔩𝔬𝔤𝔦𝔠𝔞 (𝔮𝔲𝔢𝔯𝔢𝔩𝔦𝔰) (𝔰𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔭𝔱𝔲𝔯𝔞) 12:40, 4 May 2021 (UTC)


  1. Move to essay space. —cosmikdebris talk stalk 14:24, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  2. What cosmik said.-Flandres (talk) 14:58, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  3. I'll formally throw in a "move to essayspace" vote, it's not a main space article (too non-notable), but no need to completely delete. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 15:17, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  4. Agree. It looks good until you notice that the 'references' are mostly tweets. Essay space is for axegrinding. Smerdis of Tlön, wekʷōm teḱsos. 16:12, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  5. Ditto PoorlyDrawnRockford.jpeg Rockford the Roe boop my snootpraise Oscar Wilde 17:37, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  6. Move to draft space. Flawed, in its current state, but could be refined to focus on the main issues at stake. Fundamentally, this controversy is over unproven and sometimes abusive "treatments" parents resort to to try to "fix" their child's autism. This is relevant to RW's mission of combatting pseudoscientific practices and crank ideas like eugenics. Those dismissing this seem to lack familiarity with the topic. Splainer (talk) 22:19, 4 May 2021 (UTC)


To Siri With Love and In a Different Key are two similar articles created by the same person. If this one ends up getting deleted, they should also be nominated. Self-diagnosis was created by someone else, but contains a segment that addresses the reader directly in a way similar to this article added by QuietLuna which imo definitely shouldn’t be there (I think I’ve seen a few others as well). Christopher (talk) 10:44, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
I’m kinda fine with the second-person pov segment there since it’s in general and not towards a specific person. Pizza SLICE.gifChef Moosolini’s Ristorante ItalianoMake a Reservation 14:43, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Definitely not as bad as a whole section addressed to one specific teenager, but it still feels a bit out of place. This isn’t that relevant to the AfD, might mention it on the talk page. Christopher (talk) 14:47, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
  • @Hastur, you really should give a proper explanation for why this page should be deleted. You can't expect everyone to have seen the ATM discussion and it's not right to have an AfD discussion spread across two pages.. Spud (talk) 12:14, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

Behold! The "abused" and the "abuser"![edit]

TODAY, AT 13, ZACK Is tall and broad-shouldered with his mother’s dark hair. His dad says he seems genuinely happy most of the time. A seventh-grader at Tilden Middle School, he’s an old hand at the community outings that are new to some of his peers. He loves to swim, especially in the new pool in his backyard.

“In a lot of ways, he’s really an easy child,” Reuben says. “He’s not perfect, but he certainly has developed better than if we had left him in a 40-hour-a-week rote situation.”

There are no more full-blown tantrums, although he sometimes bites his arm when he’s anxious, and punches the wall when he’s frustrated.

“The biggest change is that Zack doesn’t stand around and wait for me to tell him what to do,” Ellenby says as her son tosses his arms over her shoulders and leans his head on her back. “Getting him out into the world and confronting what he was afraid of changed him as a person. Now Zack is Zack. We’re not fighting autism anymore, we’re working with it.”

On a Saturday morning in August, Zack bounds up the stairs to a small dance studio in Olde Towne Gaithersburg. The room is dark, lit only by a flashing disco ball. This is a place he wouldn’t have walked into several years ago, not without kicking and screaming. Instructor Jackie Zamora cranks up the salsa and begins the ZamDance class—think high-intensity Zumba with simpler steps for children with disabilities. Zack begins to jump and sway and move to the beat. The children form a circle, and even Zack takes his turn dancing in the middle.

When the class ends, Zack turns to his mother and chants, “Elevation Burger, Elevation Burger.” That’s the second stop in their Saturday routine. He knows exactly what he wants: two double-patty burgers with ketchup, pickles and onions, as usual. At the restaurant, Zack orders lunch, with some prompting from his mother, and devours it in four minutes flat. “Pool please,” he says. Ellenby smiles as her son breaks into a happy gallop and heads back to the car. [1]

Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 12:43, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

Meh. The key here seems to be is, if one is part of the autism rights movement, whether or not one thinks applied behavior analysis is completely a bad thing or not, along with the "forceful deviations" apparently applied later to the kid. A couple magazine articles saying that a minor is happy now and all is fun and games counts as little to me, to be honest, as those overconcerned parents screaming abuse in online forums. There's several articles critical of this book, but nothing remotely scientific, as at present ABA is "the best there is" for now. It's honestly impossible to comment further, no one knows how the fuck the brain really works at the moment, so probably in the future, current autism therapies will seem as primitive and quaint as Sigmund Freud's penis obsessions. Since this is advocacy, I'd almost rather move this into Essay space than delete entirely. PanGalacticGargleBlaster (talk) 13:35, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Ya, you raise very good points. I would support moving this to the essay space instead fo deleting completely. —cosmikdebris talk stalk 14:24, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Yeah. It all seems a bit "He said. She said" at the moment. Spud (talk) 14:27, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Except, of course, the key "she said" here is in the form of detailed reporting from a journalist who clearly had direct, extended access to mother and child, and everything else is a handful of people having strong opinions on the internet. I really shouldn't need to tell any of you that the latter is an eye-poppingly shite evidence base for lurid accusations of child abuse, whether they're framed in an article or an essay. Helena Bonham Carter (talk) 17:02, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I encourage people to read this article. The mother describes how, against the advice of medical professionals, she decided to subject a five-year-old autistic child to guerilla exposure therapy because he was extremely averse to indoor spaces and was throwing "tantrums." (Meltdowns are not tantrums. Talk to any adult autistic and they will tell you this. Meltdowns are when sensory overload totally overwhelms one's ability to function.) On its own this approach is bad news because it's just another example of a parent resorting to untested methods to try to "fix" their child's autism. But the incident itself was awful on a whole other level. It made me sick to read. The mother physically dragged and restrained her child, to the point she was fighting him and both were injured ("His skull smashes into my chin, and I taste the metallic taint of my own blood.") Bystanders could see the extreme distress her actions were causing her son, but her thoughts were centered solely on "not giving up." Keep in mind that the event this mother believed she was justified in using physical force to drag her son to was a Sesame Street concert. Not a doctor's appointment or something similarly vital and necessary.

The update doesn't really prove anything except that the mother is more satisfied with her son's developmental progress now. It doesn't give us any insight into the child's own thoughts or feelings. (He's still self-harming, though. That's right there in the snippet). There's a long history of non-autistic people talking over autistics as if they are a greater authority on our minds, our feelings, and our experiences than us. The same thing happens to trans kids whose parents insist they know their child's gender identity better than they do. This wiki seemed like it was finally taking a step toward trusting marginalized voices as authorities on their own lives and experiences, as most progressive spaces have started doing in recent years, but I guess not. Splainer (talk) 21:58, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

When you use phrases like “trusting marginalized voices”, people who otherwise might’ve listened to you immediately dismiss everything you have to say. I’m not saying they’re right to, but they do. Christopher (talk) 22:06, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Should I have said "trusting disabled voices?" The other example of being talked over that I gave related to trans people. I didn't want to conflate transness with disability and thus potentially imply it's a mental disorder. Contrary to what others might think, I do actually think about what I write. Splainer (talk) 22:26, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
I don't want to sound like a stick in the mud, but methinks AfD isn't the right space for this discussion. Though IDK if defending the article's existence is your objective. Gangster Computer God (talk) 22:39, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
[EC]“___ voices” in this context is social justice talk, it’s inherently off-putting. I’m sure just you spend a lot of time interacting with other people who use that sort of language and don’t think anything of it, but it immediately others you and makes you seem preachy and condescending to a lot of people. I’d have just dropped that last sentence, pick your battles. Christopher (talk) 22:42, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
You’re probably right there. Christopher (talk) 22:42, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
Just realised I did the exact same thing by sort of calling you an SJW, I should pretend that was an intentional analogy. Christopher (talk) 22:50, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── (edit conflict) This isn't Wikipedia, or so I've been told. It's okay to have an opinion here. I don't see why I should refrain from "social justice talk" because it might make the channers in the room twitchy. Those discomfited by "social justice talk" certainly haven't refrained from sharing their thoughts on progressive ideas and minority groups. Free speech for me and not for thee, I guess. I suppose it's now crystal clear what audience RW is playing to. Splainer (talk) 23:01, 4 May 2021 (UTC)

You can express social justice viewpoints without social justice talk, and lose nothing by doing so. No one is taking away your freedom of speech, I was just offering some advice on messaging; you’re free to ignore me. Christopher (talk) 23:05, 4 May 2021 (UTC)
"Social justice talk" isn't how I'd categorize Splainer's approach, as the term is too vague to be helpful. Splainer just seems to be the type that overreacts and seeing meaning in words that aren't there, comes to a conclusion about bad intent, and then sticks a buzzword label on an opponent (recently implied editors here are "channers"). It sounds an awful lot like the stereotype of "tumblrina" and such that make social justice advocates overall look bad. I believe in social justice and I can back this up; it's why I wrote at length defending ace inclusion in the LGBT+ community, I tell others to stop using the r-word, I wrote a lot about prison mistreatment during COVID, I wrote about felony disenfranchisement, and I've had a history of lengthy debates arguing in Talk:Cognitive differences between sexes and interpreting James Damore's shoddy Google memo thing, and I spent a lot of time asking trans people about their experiences and wishing I can understand black people more. I still find Splainer, as put, preachy and condescending, and HBC had a point warning me that they'll spend time arguing to the ground and not budging. I gave Splainer a chance, I don't have as much patience as I used to. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 02:49, 5 May 2021 (UTC)
I would say that Splainer's approach is also aggressive. Look back at the beginning of the ATIM thread. The second post is a sarcastic reply from Hastur: " 'Perhaps its hypoxia that makes QuietLuna so quite' Lol yeah very offensive", but Splainer follows that, in his second paragraph, with "fuck off, Hastur. You're contributing nothing of value to this discussion with your 4chan edgelord act. Users with your mentality are the rot that's eating this wiki from the inside". Frankly, I feel that that reply is very escalatory, and much worse than the sarcasm it's replying to; it's a bit more than just condescending. Omicron (talk) 03:27, 5 May 2021 (UTC)
Yeah, it's not endearing. When you also point this out, Splainer will just accuse you of "both sidering" or something similar. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 04:11, 5 May 2021 (UTC)
I can easily understand their thought process though.
  1. I am moral and righteous.
  2. Because I am moral and righteous, those that oppose me are evil.
  3. Evil people have X, Y and Z isms and do actions W and X.
  4. Person A opposes me.
  5. Person A is therefore evil.
  6. Because person A is evil, they have X, Y and Z isms and does actions W and X.
It's a common thought process in self-righteous people. You see it all the time with assfly and his ilk. Gangster Computer God (talk) 11:55, 5 May 2021 (UTC)