Is it right for people to assume that attempted murder is alright just because the victim has Autism? Of course not! Read more HERE
Luis Suarez, an accomplished footballer who plays for Liverpool in the UK’s Premier League and for Uruguay’s National team is in the middle of yet another media storm because of his actions yesterday. In Uruguay’s World Cup match against Italy yesterday, Suarez bit Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini in the shoulder. Suarez has a terrible history of biting players during a football match. Today, the Mail Online reported that Suarez has been charged by FIFA for biting an opponent and could potentially be slapped with a two-year ban.
As if this story isn’t disturbing enough, I have found that my blog has been viewed hundreds of times yesterday when people entered the search terms, ‘Luis Suarez Autistic’. I find it offensive that some people would quickly assume that someone who displays inappropriate behaviours that Suarez did, is autistic.
Why would they? Is it because they have encountered someone with Autism who has the tendency to bite when they are angry? Yes, some people with Autism may have that tendency, but not everyone with Autism does so.
Is it because Suarez has been doing this exact same thing and he seems not to have learned? That’s not a sign of Autism.
Is it because he is unable to control his emotions whilst also not understanding social norms? Those may be signs of Autism but one needs to look at the whole picture and observe individuals in different contexts to see whether the behaviour and understanding are constant.
Even though I am extremely offended, I understand that I may be over-reacting. I am here to educate and not moan. A diagnosis of Autism requires a lot of tests, conversations and observations. Observing someone on a football field is not enough to warrant a diagnosis. Also, inappropriate behaviours are caused by a lot of factors, which makes it impossible to pin it down to a specific condition.
I hope this clears things up somehow.
One can never get enough of X-Men and Game of Thrones:
Those of you who have been following my blog for quite some time will know that I spend most of my time in schools with children and young people with Autsim Spectrum Conditions (ASC). This week is no exception. I have spent most of this week with a child who is obsessed with Peppa Pig. I figured that I have to utilise this obsession and use Peppa Pig games and videos as rewards for good work and good behaviour.
My plan worked fantastically! My new little friend has developed a liking for his one-to-one time with me because I was strict but fair. My expectations and rules did not change for the whole week, but my rewards were also consistent- one ‘decent’ piece of work equals 10 minutes of ‘choice time’. I gave my student a choice between playing an iPad game or watching any Peppa Pig Youtube clip. For the whole week, he always opted for the second option. In addition, he always chose the same video- Peppa Pig’s The Bing Bong Song. As a result, this song has been stuck in my head and I have been singing it on repeat since Wednesday afternoon.
Here it is:
Isn’t it catchy?
This is why I love my job. It keeps me young!
KEVIN DURANT– NBA scoring leader and Most Valuable Player. Greatest basketball player in the NBA this season.
Jeff Caplan wrote that Durant is the first player since Michael Jordan to:
1. Score at least 25pts in at least 40 games (MJ in 1987-1987)
2. Average 32.0 ppg, 7 rpg and 5 apg (MJ in 1988-89)
And he’s the first to have at least 35pts, 10 rebounds and 5 assists in 3 consecutive games since Larry Bird.
Most of us see the highlights, the exceptional shots, dunks, assists and game-winners. We see the wins and the losses, the rise of a leader. The rise of KD.
In his acceptance speech, KD emphasized that he did not do it alone. He had help and inapiration. He singled out his mom and each teammate. He thanked everyone who helped him reach his dream.
Winning an MVP trophy is seen as a celebration of an individual’s brilliance. An individual’s amazing effort and success. But Kevin Durant set the record straight. He became an MVP because of the people around him. He is still standing despite all the adversities that have happened to him as an individual, to his family and to Oklahoma- the city which his team is based.
He thanked the veteran players in his team who inspires and sets an example for him. He thanked the young players for looking up to him and thus made him consciously elevate his game. He thanked OKC Thunder’s management for believing in the team.
Kevin Durant is a supremely talented basketball player and a great leader. But what sets him apart from everyone else is his appreciation of the people around him. His speech showed that he does not take anything for granted.
We could all take a page from Kevin’s book. Let’s start (or continue) to appreciate what people do for us. As Kevin implied, we cannot succeed on our own.
Last week, I joined Autism Campaigner Kevin Healey and a few others to discuss Autism and Bullying.