Stunning book - must read for all parents of children with autism,
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This review is from: Autism's False Prophets: Bad Science, Risky Medicine, and the Search for a Cure (Paperback)
As the parent of a child with Asperger's syndrome - and a working scientist of 35 years experience in biomedicine - I salute Paul Offit for this masterly book. Here (for anyone willing to open their minds) is the truth about how so many parents, doctors, lawyers, opportunists and media people conspired not to advance the prospects of autistic children, but to label them damaged, worthless, victims and to "search for the guilty".
There is so much genuine understanding of human motivation here - good and bad. The parents desperate for any explanation why their child appears different from most others; the self-delusional medical fraudsters; the money-making lawyers who always come out smiling; the scientists baffled and threatened when all they are trying to do is find out the truth; the media managers desperate for a "controversy" to drive up audience figures and keep their advertisers happy. It is an intensely human story, because if all the characters behaved logically, the absurd and catastrophic loss of faith in vaccines would never have taken place.
Calmly and carefully, Paul strips away the various layers of misunderstanding, poor communication, political opportunism and deliberate lies to reveal: first - that there is not a shred of evidence that any child has ever developed autism as a result of thimerosal in vaccines or the MMR triple vaccine; second, that wherever parents are desperate enough to seek a "cure" for autism, there will be no shortage of hucksters ready to sell hope for a thick wad of cash (oh and by the way parents, if you don't get the result you hoped for - it's your fault); third, just because something is demonstrably false, some people will still choose to believe it.
Ultimately any child with autism is still a child with a future and with potential. All children develop in unexpected ways and this is true of autistic children as well. All chidren benefit from love and support, not from being labelled "hopeless" "soulless" "empty" or "damaged beyond repair". The world is full of autistic people and always will be.
As others have said, if you are the parent of an autistic child, read this book.