“I think brain scans are cool and sexy!”
This comment from a female responding to a post on an Asperger website, worries me. Would an Asperger female talk this way? As I skimmed through posts and comments, I noticed something: it was like reading one of those women’s magazines – Glamor, or Teen-Style composed of clips lifted from media sources; health and beauty product sources, giving girls advice on “being a popular girl”. Ostensibly “feminist” in an acceptable form; be strong, be fierce, be zany and cute, be “smart” in some female way, like devoting your life to charitable causes – but above all, wear the “right” clothing, make-up and perfect smile: click here to purchase instantly.
Targeting 8-year olds with “makeover” parties and mixed messages for preteen girls.
Am I being harsh? Could be, but with a new “awareness” of female Asperger’s, and the wide-spread notion that it’s “different” in girls, a fad-type phenomenon is probably inevitable in our attention-seeking, obsessed-with-novelty social media culture. The “wide open” new and expanding criteria for diagnosis of Asperger’s in females has become a torrent of “me-too” self-diagnosis, and diagnosis-for-status in a new “community” of self-help gurus; women who either believe they “have” Asperger’s or have been diagnosed (upgraded) from being plain-old Autistic – somewhere in the mix is the politics of which diagnosis garners the most “accommodations” in treatment, special education, and book sales.
A puke-pink ghetto for females…is this really “normal”?
Of course, there is the ever-present push to round up all these new “renegade” females and turn them into “normal” girls before they escape into self-determination. Co-opting and redefining the rebellious impulses of adolescents, minorities, and especially females of all ages, is something that society does all the time. One of the most obvious examples is the “re-packaging” of black music into pop-forms that feed a voracious industry entertainment and fashion industry. When “gangster” knock-off clothing surfaces at K-mart (and on grandma), it’s a sign that what was once “authentic” is now ” made in China”.
Miss Montana is first autistic contestant for Miss America: “I’ve learned to love dressing up if I like what I’m wearing,” Wineman said. “I only learned how to use a curling iron a few months ago – I only know how to do one hairstyle. It’s been really fun to dress up and look nice.” (in a bikini and high heels in front of millions of viewers) (See article in a later post)
We already confront the media mainstreaming of Autism, in token characters inserted into children’s programming; as lovable weirdos in family films, who only need a hug and an invitation to a birthday party in order to become “normal” and in make-over segments on daytime talk shows. “Look – we turned this totally dorky teenager into a real fake girl”. It’s insidious. Step by step, exotic alien cultures become fast-food franchises and fashion trends. The great American culture machine devours any original craft, art, literature, tradition, religion or “disease” and returns it as hollow novelty to the checkout shelves at Walmart.
Watch out Islam: The Great American media machine will devour you.
The neurotypical impulse to reduce all humanity to a collection of Barbie dolls, and male sociopaths and psychopaths, now includes co-opting the “definition” of female Asperger’s. We have become celebrities of a sort; imaginary beings that can be dressed up in sham fantasies. A collection of bad qualities can be given a marketable spin. Being “male-brained freaks” actually boosts our social status. And, we can be a “positive pathology” compared to other dreadful and patronizing “female disorders”.