…why should we hide our abilities and intellect?
A Question we all need to reflect & ponder
The idea for a book and this title came after pondering many years of discrimination as a ‘half-cast’ as I was known in my early childhood formative years, then as name calling such as ‘chink’, progressed to aloof and snob and in the later years most recent, to subtle discriminatory tactics by people in positions of power.
As a child I carried a mantra with me, ‘sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me‘ – I used my intellect to overcome these very harsh experiences, I used my autistic abilities and heightened senses to observe deeply those around me, I watched and came to the rescue of many peers who were not autistic, (but who were minorities in many various ways, shapes and forms) and who could not stand up for themselves.
Life experience teaches you much, when you are willing and able to assess the fate of those who continue to live on survival modes which basically means they live in a state of fear – you know, the animalistic kind (fear: loss of control, loss of food source, loss of anything and everything related to surviving as a human being – even if it means stealing from others, killing to keep your own territory/land in your hands and yes, bullying to permeate fear among surrounding human others to which the bullying exemplifies your own state of fear based in the survival modality falsely providing one with a sense of control, authority and power over others).
When I was DX or rather, identified as autistic, the psychiatrist asked me whether I would want the actual official paperwork (now, this was approx. 22 + years ago, before our community of global autistic people had a chance to ‘come out’ and form our own emerging society). I was rather surprised at this statement. My response was, why would I not want it? I was thrilled to finally find out what human genetic group I belonged to and was excited to begin to meet many others like me locally, nationally and internationally! Upon recent reflection i understand the question. It was not whether I wanted the Official DX, it was rather, if people like me, fortunate to have parents and a family who could support my ‘unsual (by the then human standards) complexities and eccentricities’ – perhaps if such people like Leonora start to stand up for this emerging population, then – where are the controls?
As we watch daily, the refugee status from Syria to Europe and everything in between, what is it that we are truly witnessing on social media with the photos and video and television news? We are witnessing governments in a ‘state of fear’, borders being closed, treatment of humans not unlike we have seen in past history; unworthy of respect and dignity rather of human damnation and calamity, as many promote, finger pointing select groups at convenience and allowing atrocities to occur, diminishing that portion of the human race.
If we are not careful, history too may repeat itself, with regard to the special needs population and in particular that of the Autistic population. So, I ask you, you who have taken the time to read this, whilst recognizing that our abilities and intellect transfer into physical and verbal manifestations often – Black people cannot hide their color, why should we hide our abilities and intellect?
Leonora Gregory-Collura – September 19, 2015 – Copyright June 2015. All rights reserved.