Autism Back in Major Spotlight After Sandy Hook Tragedy

While most of the country is still trying to come to terms with the horrific tragedy that unfolded at the Sandy Hook Elementary School recently, others are trying to make sense of the decisions that Adam Lanza made that fateful morning. Trying to piece the puzzle together, many media outlets have pointed out Adam Lanza’s history with Asperger’s or better known as Autism. According to “Autism Speaks”, Asperger Syndrome is “an autism spectrum disorder (ASD) considered to be on the “high functioning” end of the spectrum. Affected children and adults have difficulty with social interactions and exhibit a restricted range of interests and/or repetitive behaviors.”

Autism Spectrum is a label that has been given to Adam Lanza but no one has been able to link his Autism to the senseless acts of violence he committed. Yet that hasn’t stopped many from profiling those with Autism and Aspergers when things like this happen. Although it is true that many with Autism seem to lack personal empathy, empathy is also something that can certainly be taught and learned through years of good parenting and positive activities aimed to reinforce it.

In a time like this, its understandable how many people are trying to find answers but to put a spotlight on Autism and try to use that as an excuse for that kind of violence can be borderline ridiculous. To many in the Autism community, this can be quite insulting because this can easily lead to unnecessary profiling. Now is a good opportunity for society to look even closer at Autism and learn even more about it and how certain behaviors are linked to it. Those trying to make a case out of Adam’s Autism are either looking to make a name for themselves or just don’t know any better.

At the end of the day, parents take on the biggest responsibility when it comes to children, teens, and even grown adults with Autism. Therefore, if there is ANY blame for what happened, it should be shifted to everything happening in and around Adam’s life instead of his Aspergers.

All of us Awareness Depot and would like to express our deepest condolences to the families affected by this tragedy. If there is a time where change is needed in this country, it is definitely now. Autism doesn’t kill, guns were made to and that’s where society needs to focus their efforts in making a positive change.