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Those whose Children lie upon the Stones

 
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marianneh



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PostPosted: Sun Oct 19, 2014 1:16 am    Post subject: Those whose Children lie upon the Stones Reply with quote

Joshua Davies, a 14 year old boy in Pontypridd, was warm hearted and trusting. He saw the good in people whether it was there or not. But perhaps his kindness was not evident to his peers.

They might have mistaken his idiosyncratic demeanour for cold aloofness. In fact, he found it a bit difficult to communicate or to perceive other people's malice. He had been diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome.

He had been persecuted by terrifying bullies for much of his school career.He had repeatedly sought help from the police, but they did nothing. In flight from a rabble of pursuing young yobs, he jumped in blind panic from a great height. He is still alive, but doctors say he will be paralyzed for life.

The reason this press release is so belated is that I didn't have the courage to read the details or concentrate on them when the story came out. It's so upsetting.I wish there was something I could do, but there is not.

We know that life is unfair, but the unfairness in life should be more fairly distributed. Because he was not a typical boy, Joshua was persecuted. But at least he had his mobility. Now he has been deprived of that too.

Apart from the physical inconvenience, he may be shunned for that too. I don't suppose he will be deemed worthy of the minimum wage.

The words put into Jesus' mouth are tragically true. To those who have, more will be given. But from those who have not, even that which they have will be taken away. It's not just, but that's how it is.

Somebody said to me that she hoped the bullies would now be prosecuted. Perhaps the police should review their own former lack of response too.

I've had both positive and negative experiences with the police. I found them very helpful when I discussed with them a racist hate incident at Cilmeri. But one newspaper thinks they do not yet take disablst hate crime with the same seriousness.

An example of this is Fiona Pilkington and her teenage daughter Francesca Hardwick. Because Francesca had learning difficulties, they were both targeted by yobs for many years. The youths would bombard their house with missiles, shouting,''Disabled bitch''. Even the word 'disabled' was an insult in their vocabulary.

Fiona made over 300 complaints to the police. But they didn't take her seriously. Finally, she was driven to incinerating herself and her daughter alive in a car. It was the only way she could express the pain.

An uncomprehending person on the internet said ''She murdered her disabled daughter, the evil bitch!'' But she was not evil. She had been driven to extremities. I can well understand how she felt.

Hope was expressed at the time that the police would learn lessons from this. But the Joshua Davies story suggests that they have not.

I remember trying to persuade a GP in the 80s that I really needed his help to make my comely but slightly atypical body look more acceptable. I said, quite truthfully, that some people at school bullied me. ''No, they don't, bach'', he said.In those days, it was ignored entirely.

He was making a rod for his own back. A few years later, he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease. He probably found that he wasn't taken seriously after that.

I have a friend who is almost saintly. He has no malice or pettiness. In a sense, he is extremely wise. But in a world of fools, he sometimes has misunderstandings or gets ripped off because he judges people by himself. His high IQ which is Mensa level only makes things worse. It isolates him from typical people all the more. Also, for such a kind and wise person, he can sometimes be surprisingly tactless.

He has wondered if he had Asperger traits. He thought it might be a good idea to get a diagnosis. He expected that people would make allowances for him if they appreciated he was on the spectrum, as opposed to trying to annoy them on purpose.

I hated to break it to him but he was giving people too much credit for rationality.Labels can be used to dehumanise people. Asperger's Syndrome has only recently been recognised, but there is already a hate site on the internet, dedicated to mocking 'Aspies.' Like a chorus, each paragraph ends with 'Flap flap' in allusion to their perceived tendency to flap their hands.

It's not always the kids who bully 'Aspies' at school, but the teachers. Asperger's Syndrome is the term for able people with some autistic traits.We've heard of a school for autistic kids between Llanelli and Burry Port where the teachers enjoyed a reign of terror.

In the southern USA, teachers are still allowed to assault pupils with a horrible instrument called a 'paddle' which was formerly used to subdue slaves. A six year old boy with Asperger's Syndrome was left severely traumatised after experiencing this.He had no idea what he had done to offend the teacher in the first place.

The most flagrant example of abuse by people in authority was seen in the case of Gary Mackinnon. He was an exceptionally intelligent but unexpectedly naïve young man who hacked into American government computers because he believed they were covering up information about UFOs.

It was only when he was subsequently interviewed by media outlets, that anyone noticed that he had Aspergers' Syndrome. At first, it did not look as if this would prevent his being extradited from Britain to the US, where some bigshot said that he wanted to 'see him fry.'

As usually happens, a plague of sadists infested message boards to say what should happen to him. Some of them thought that Aspergers Syndrome aggravated the offence rather than mitigating it. Some despairing citizen commented, 'And they say it's Aspies who lack empathy!'

The Labour Home Secretary, Alan Johnson, came across as very human. He wrote some engaging books about his poor boyhood.He enjoyed a laugh at his own expense on 'Have I Got News For You'. His Conservative successor, Theresa May imperiously sneered at human rights.

So which of the two conceded that Gary Mackinnon should not be extradited? It was Theresa May! It shows you should never jump to conclusions about anyone.

Gary Mackinnon's mother Janis Sharp expressed the hope in her book on the case that the Paralympic Games of 2012 were evidence that society was finally becoming more accepting of disabled people. The hope was partly justified.

A young man wrote to the Metro that he had previously looked down on people with disabilities, but he had changed his mind after watching the Paralympics. We know that Jac o 'the North was freaked out by the whole concept that a disabled athlete could exist, and thought it shouldn't be allowed. To him it was an oxymoron. He was like the little boy who saw a giraffe and said, ''There ain't no such animal!''

Well, there's always one. At least the Metro correspondent accepted that if experience showed him that the world was not as he had previously thought, it was his ideas that had to change, not the world.

Incidentally, I agree very much with those who have challenged Simon Baron Cohen on his view that people with Asperger's Syndrome have zero empathy. Far from it, they have so much empathy that they are hamstrung by it. They feel other people's suffering so much that it paralyzes them. This doesn't make them much practical use, but it's not that they don't care.

Baron Cohen can only be right if he is using the word empathy in a very restricted sense. If he means that people with Asperger's have difficulty reading others' body language or understanding what they are thinking, he is correct about that. But it's not that they don't want to understand. And they have no lack of compassion. They also tend to act in an extremely principled and above board way. They are genuinely surprised when others don't.
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marianneh



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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 12:17 am    Post subject: How can this bullying be combated? Reply with quote

Given that a great deal of this bullying is done by schoolchildren and youths, how should it be tackled? It may be that we have evolved to judge people on appearance, although we're less likely to do this as we get older, as experience shows that it's not very useful.

It must, though, be partly cultural. A few years ago, parents wrote to complain about a young woman with an incomplete arm appearing on a TV children's show. They said that they were unable to answer their children's questions on the subject. This sounds like an unwitting admission of a severe lack of parenting skills.

Personally, I find it impossible to understand why people have this sort of problem with other people's bodies. I had a next door neighbour whose mother had taken the thalidomide drug. I was used to this boy from earliest infancy. I was amazed later when adults rather tactlessly referred to thalidomide as causing 'horrific' deformities. They were serious all right but not horrific in the sense of being difficult to look at.

But when we went to school, the kids were inclined to bully him, suggesting that it was already a bit late for them to develop a sensible attitude. From the 90s, I noticed library books for children with titles like 'I have Muscular Dystrophy' or whatever. The text made plain that people with disabilities were like everyone else. Sadly, the writers felt a need to explain that 'although they are disabled, people still want to be liked.'

This does need to be specified. A journalist who had a crippling accident noted that some cretin came up to imitate his impaired movements, and was genuinely offended that he didn't appreciate it. 'Haven't you got a sense of humour?' he demanded indignantly.

It may be that some schoolkids are really frightened about disability. They may seriously think that conditions like cancer and epilepsy are catching. It should be explained clearly that they are not.

But as children and teenagers are often narcissistic, don't make the mistake I did, and try to bring it home to them how unpleasant it is to be on the receiving end with autobiographical and historical examples. If they're deficient in sympathy, can't put themselves in someone else's shoes and are not mature enough to take responsibility, it's not going to work. A good telling off, however justified, will just make them feel it's they who are being victimised. Or they might take a sadistic pleasure in hearing how upset someone is, and become worse than ever.

The next best thing is to say that they may -say-have a leg amputated or develop Parkinson's Disease at some point, and if it ever happens, they will want to be treated with respect. You could say,''If you woke up tomorrow and found that you'd had a stroke, would that make you any less human?''

I don't think punishment ever works in the sense of making people better. It's much more likely to aggravate their objectionable qualities. It's like Jeremy Bentham said, all punishment contains something of evil.

But when it's got to the stage that someone has been driven to the extremities that Joshua Davies was, prosecution ought to be inevitable. It's not that it will do the culprit any good but it's necessary as a deterrent to others and to protect society.

Although overweening narcissism is usually a passing phase of adolescence, there is a view that there is now an epidemic of malignant narcissism among adults. Ironically, narcissism can mimic the symptoms of Asperger's Syndrome or autism. In each case the person will be self absorbed. But while there is little or no malice in Aspergers people, narcissists really do lack empathy and they will be big trouble for people who get involved with them.

My cousin who worked with autistic adults, said that the person who trained her mentioned Margaret Thatcher as a good example of someone with Asperger's Syndrome. I think this is quite unlikely as Thatcher remarked that she was gloating over the defeat of the miners for instance. It sounds much more like narcissism to me.

Sam Vaknin thinks it is positively useful if you hear adults disparaging groups like the disabled, the accident prone, the unlucky or the soft hearted. If they do any or all of these things you can be sure that they are malignant narcissists, and if they allow them into your life, they will just exploit you and abuse your good nature. He says, 'Save yourself a world of trouble and pain.' Stay away from them.

I agree this is necessary as a self defence measure, but it's a bit unfortunate. If it's extreme enough to qualify as a personality disorder which is supposed to be true in one per cent of cases, couldn't it also be classed as a disability?

Sam Vaknin himself says that those with Narcissistic Personality Disorder are insane. Perhaps it's a case where they need the support of their friends but their friends don't need them.

My son Andantom blames the parents. He says if you bring up your children with constant praise and 'unconditional love' in the mistaken notion that you are fostering high self esteem, they're just going to become narcissists.

I felt stricken.Until a few decades ago, parents and teachers often told kids they were rubbish. I don't think they were being consciously cruel. It's how they had been brought up themselves, and it never occurred to them to do otherwise.

Some of us remembered how unpleasant that was and went to the opposite extreme. We thought we were doing something good. It looks like you can't do right for doing wrong.
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marianneh



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 12:15 am    Post subject: In-What-Furnace-was-thy-Brain? Reply with quote

I met a woman at the bus stop yesterday who told me she had recently managed to get a diagnosis for Asperger's Syndrome. She found this genuinely helpful. People at work did now make allowances for her.

On the other hand, she knew a young man with Asperger's Syndrome who was constantly subjected to cyber-bullying. I suggested he show the electronic hate mail to the police. The evidence would be unassailable. What better time could there be? The penalty will soon be two years in prison.

Why do we hear so much about Asperger's and autism today? They used to be almost unknown. Now everyone knows a child who has a statement of needs asserting that they are autistic or have Asperger's Syndrome. And what is it really?

I first heard of autism as a child when I picked up a copy of 'Reader's Digest' in the 70s. It had the condensed version of 'For the Love of Ann', a book about a girl born in the 50s with severe autism.

Doctors weren't aware of autism in those days. They wrote her off as a psychopath or severely subnormal with an IQ of zero. They weren't at all sympathetic to the parents' feelings, advising them gruffly to put her in a home, and forget about her.

The parents refused to give up. Nothing shows how much times have changed since the 50s and even the 70s than their strategy for bringing Ann out of herself. Her father noticed that her ability to learn, leapt forward after each time she received an accidental injury.

From this, he deduced that she could be slapped into feeding herself and should be beaten into submission if she behaved inappropriately. The writer recorded this uncritically.

You would be locked up if you treated your children like this now. Yet it would be churlish to be over critical of the parents. In their time they were heroic.

The writer believed that autism was a mental illness, and Ann had made a full recovery. This would now be considered impossible. It's more likely that a combination of threats and cajolery had enabled her to behave conventionally.

Another article claimed that autistic people were like 'ancient philosophers'. It recorded the thoughts of Neil, a young autistic man of 19.

He made whimsical remarks like 'If there was a darker colour than black, I'd paint the bathroom in it. Then, I'd paint the bath black to brighten it up.''

Bruno Bettelheim, who had survived a concentration camp, thought that autism was a reactive psychosis caused by severe trauma. He thought autistic children were in the same emotional state as adults who had just been liberated from Belsen. He put it down to crap parents.

As late as 1983, Robin Skynner in 'Families and How to Survive Them' was expounding the 'Refrigerator Mother' theory of autism to John Cleese as fact, although he did not use that phrase. This was not a very helpful explanation as it made parents feel guilty on top of their other stresses.

Skynner reassured Cleese that only one child in 2,000 was autistic. No one would say that now.

A piece of whimsy sometimes heard is that autism or Aperger's is the next stage of evolution. This doesn't seem very likely as, although there are adaptive features, the maladaptive ones are often extremely marked.

The idea that it is the extreme end of the typical male personality is intriguing. But it does sound quite sexist and stereotypical to me.

It sounds as if it comes out of the 'Men are from Mars;women are from Venus' stable. My response is 'Men are from Earth; women are from Earth. Get over it.'

The maverick doctor, Vernon Coleman, is very naughty to continue to peddle the anti-vaccine line, by saying autism is caused by brain damage, and this can be attributed to vaccines. The brains of autistic people may or may not be wired differently from those of other people. But this is not brain damage in the sense that most of us would understand.

It is not caused by an internal catastrophe like a stroke or an external one like being hit by a brick. We now think that children are born with it.

Robin Skynner unwittingly gave a clue when he said that parents of autistic children tended to be detached, abstract thinkers. He deduced that they were no good at responding to their children emotionally, which was why the children became autistic.

Another and probably more helpful scenario is that there is a degree of genetic heritability. The parents are detached, abstract thinkers. It sounds quite a bit like Asperger's.

It is hard to know what to think of Simon Baron-Cohen's rather depressing little book. He says that the exceptional 'savant' skills attributed to autistic people are very rare, and most of them are severely subnormal with no hope of significant progress. Is this telling it like it is, or uncalled for doom mongering?

Those who blame vaccines will say you never heard of autism or Asperger's in the past. No, you didn't. This was probably because if children were severely affected in the past they would be classed as imbeciles, consigned to asylums and forgotten. And if they were mildly affected, they were called 'loners' or 'eccentric', and nobody thought anything of it.

One thing's for sure. It can't be true that autism didn't exist at all in the past.

The diaries of H H Asquith's daughter-in-law, Cynthia have been published. She wrote them during the First World War. She was puzzled and anguished about her son. She had no idea what his problem was, but it looks like a textbook case of autism now.

It would probably be impossible to say for sure if the perceived run away escalation of kids with autism or Asperger's is real or imagined. One quirky theory could account for a genuine hike.

In the past, geeks and anoraks had about as much chance of mating and passing on their genes as they had of going on holiday to Mars. Now, they can sit in front of a computer all day and commune with like minded people. They can even get together with them and have children who will have a double dose of abstractedness.
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marianneh



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PostPosted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 4:08 pm    Post subject: Conpspiracy Theories Kill Reply with quote

A Mail journalist who was predisposed to support Gary Mckinnon - I've been spelling it wrong up to now - was nevertheless a bit irritated by his harping on his belief that 9/11 was an inside job, but then remembered that Asperger's sufferers must be expected to have narrow and obsessive interests.

It behoves us to be tolerant. According to his mother, he no longer believes that the American government caused 9/11.

Perhaps the journalist was barking up the wrong tree here. Conspiracy theories have always existed, but they have really taken off in the internet age. Hordes of people spend all day ruminating on their pet conspiracy theories, and the majority of the brooders do not have Asperger's

What they will usually have is a feeling of alienation, a low level of trust and - strangely enough- open minds. You can see all these in Russell Brand. I'm ashamed to admit than I too briefly accepted the 9/11 conspiracy myth while staying with people who subscribed to it. It was a case of intellectual contagion.

One thing that made it seem quite plausible was when a radio host said,''But if George Dubya Bush knew about it, he's not just a stupid and unlikeable man. He's a monster!''

He said this as if that was impossible. But to those of us who had seen Bush's cruel impressions of Texas prisoners on Death Row, the possibility that he was a monster sounded quite compelling. After all, monsters do exist.

Since I've taken my friends' advice to do my own research, I've changed my mind. I pointed out to a friend that I'd seen the second plane go in. He said, ''What you saw was an illusion.'' So I looked at it again from different angles, and it definitely happened.

The 9/11 conspiracy theory is not internally consistent or logically based. And as Aspies are supposed to be logical to a fault, I do not see conspiracy theories as a defining trait.

If conspiracy rumination was a besetting Asperger's trait, it would be ironic that one of the most lethal of all conspiracy theories is about autism. I can remember having an open mind on the theory that the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine could cause autism when my children were having their jabs. I think even the Guardian was asking if Leo Blair had had his jab.

Andrew Wakefield's paper had been published in 'The Lancet' after all. At that time, I had respect for Dr Vernon Coleman who also thought vaccines in general were the work of the Devil.

As I took my son Andantom out to have his MMR jab, my husband looked at him lugubriously, and said, ''This may be your last day of happiness. From now on, you could be a zombie'', revealing a macabre and negative attitude to autism.

By the time Taliesin was old enough for the MMR jab, my husband's negativity was less passive. He threw a hissy fit in the surgery, threatening to sue everything that moved.

A young doctor tried to convince me of the safety of the procedure. She said that people said that they saw a difference in their children within 24 hours of having the vaccine.But if that was true, the autism couldn't be caused by the jab, as it would take longer than that to take effect.

I professed to agree with her as I didn't want her to think we were both mad, but I really didn't know what to believe. I did volunteer the thought that people still had a stigmatising attitude to mental problems. So, it was easier for parents to blame an external event than accept that they had a perceived taint in the family.

It's definitely better that they should blame the jab, rather than be ashamed of and scapegoat the affected child. Autism is not obvious from birth. Autistic children are seen as 'good' babies. They are undemanding, no trouble at all. By impish timing, they don't show signs of autism until they are old enough for the MMR jab.

The Lancet has now disowned Dr Wakefield's paper. His senior colleagues have concluded that he was not just sloppy and unprofessional but deliberately deceitful. He has been struck off. But he has as much support as ever in the lay community. A film 'Hear the Silence' presented quite a slick defence.

Some journalists such as Jo Bailey of Swansea's 'Evening Post', continued to find the case compelling. The 'Evening Post' ran a campaign imploring parents not to subject their children to the MMR jab.

It wouldn't matter if just a few kids didn't have it. According to the geneticist, Steve Jones, infectious childhood diseases didn't take off until we abandoned living in small bands of hunter gatherers, for farming and settled life. A human community has to reach a certain size before an epidemic can take hold.

Someone had even said that measles did not exist until we became pastoralists. Rinderpest jumped the species barrier and became measles. I really can't say if this in accurate. According to Steve Jones, Iceland was so under populated before the Second World War, that it only had a measles outbreak about once every seven years.

It just shows how successful the 'Evening Post''s campaign against MMR was, that vaccination levels fell below the danger threshold, and Swansea suffered a measles epidemic in the spring of 2013.

People were worried about the several children who were off school with measles but it was a young adult, 25 year old Gareth Colfer Williams who lost his life.

To their credit, the staff at 'The Evening Post' have been big enough to admit they were wrong, and now urge parents to give their children the MMR jab without fail. It shows that careless talk costs lives.

At least, the good folk at the 'Evening Post' were able to admit their error when they were presented with new information. But a committed vaccine denier will not listen to any evidence.

They can only get away with their dangerous bamboozlement because vaccines have so successfully rid us of polio, diphtheria and the like that we can't remember what it was like before.

In Somalia, there's a conspiracy theory that the polio vaccine is a plot to make Muslims sterile. I've even heard an extremely humane and usually sensible British person stand up for Somalis who kill aid workers who have given the polio jab to their children. The same person won't have the flu jab because you feel ill afterwards.

''Do you think it's a plot, and if so, who's behind it?'' I asked, and finally elicited the response, Ex-Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands. There's no point in arguing with people who want to believe these things. It just makes them more stubborn.

I spoke to my friend Jean about this. She said that on the one occasion she failed to have the flu jab, her lung collapsed. She had once been offered a jab herself when she took her baby to be vaccinated. Her arm ached all the way home, and she blamed the jab. But then, she remembered that she had been carrying a heavy baby.

Her daughter Sarah had been so premature that it was amazing she survived. She had remained weak throughout her childhood, getting every infection that was going. Jean discussed with the GP whether it was advisable to give Sarah a certain routine vaccine.

After giving a long spiel on the importance of vaccines, the doctor surprisingly said that he would not recommend it in Sarah's case. He was quite flexible, not just dishing them out regardless of individual circumstances.

The anti-vaxxers are wrong and they are a menace. But, after all, doctors shouldn't be trusted automatically. Traditionally, they have closed ranks and covered up for incompetent colleagues, at the expense of integrity and patient welfare. Harold Shipman was probably only the tip of the iceberg.

Sadistic and narcissistic types are often attracted to the medical profession because of the power it confers. It's quite true that the Tuskegee experiment deliberately infected unsuspecting African Americans with syphilis.

Children in the Australian care system really were used as guinea pigs in medical experiments. Geriatric patients really are left to starve to death in hospitals. Our next door neighbour really was prescribed the thalidomide drug in 1961, although doctors knew that it caused deformities in 1958.

It's great that doctors are no longer given automatic deference - or indeed any deference at all. They are not worthy of it. But we must be rational. Criticism has to be evidence based. Doctors must do the right thing sometimes. They are nothing special as people, but they have access to expertise that most people don't. And sometimes we need to make use of their expertise.
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marianneh



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PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2016 1:54 am    Post subject: The Hate Crime We Ignore Reply with quote

Ian Birrell has told us of a shocking crime. Two soldiers were out drinking near their camp in Wales. They came across two inoffensive teenagers walking home.

They lured them into a dark alley. They first subjected them to horrible verbal abuse.

They then beat the younger one who was aged 16 unconscious. The older one managed to flee after being punched, hit and battered with a terracotta pot.

The soldiers filmed the fun on their mobile phones as a form of entertainment which they could share with their friends later. Why did they do it?

From the insults such as 'spastic', it is obvious that the squaddies intuited that the youths were disabled in some way, although they got the details wrong. They were in fact autistic. The younger one was also deaf.

The younger boy was left in a coma for three days. Even before this, the 18 year old struggled with socialising. He will find it much harder now.

To me, it is all the more tragic that it is part of their condition that they are naïve and trusting. Ian Birrell comments that the assailants were 'inadequate', but confesses himself baffled as to why anyone would want to behave like this.

The only good thing is that the police did get their act together in this case. The culprits have been given appropriately severe sentences. Nevertheless, Lord MacDonald calls disability hate crime a 'scar on the conscience' of the criminal justice system.

I know a gifted musician in Abergavenny. He is rather quiet. People tell me he gets deluged in verbal abuse as he walks down the street because of 'the condition he has.'

''What condition is that?'' I asked. 'Autism' or 'Aspergers' came the answer. I was surprised that strangers would notice it. He doesn't differ from the 'norm' physically.

But I am not very observant. Perhaps they up on something that I can't see.

It sounds harsh but some have designated the anti-MMR vaccine conspiracy hate speech. If you'd rather take the risk of your child dying of an infectious illness than live on the autism spectrum, what does that say about you?
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marianneh



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PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 9:56 pm    Post subject: vaxxers Reply with quote

The former doctor, Andrew Wakefield, has arrived in the UK to watch the film 'Vaxxers' which promotes the fairy tale about MMR causing autism. A garbled understanding is abroad in our streets.

An elderly woman appeared at a GP's surgery accompanied by her daughter. She was asked if she had had her flu jab for that winter. The daughter said quickly, ''She can't have the flu jab. It causes autism!''

The medic looked at her in disbelief. Did she really think the flu jab could give her 90 year old mother autism?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 19, 2017 10:08 pm    Post subject: o Reply with quote

Emily O' Reilly was an exceptionally attractive teenager. But her life was not easy. She had Asperger's Syndrome.

She was walking down the street near Walsall when she was attacked by another girl of her own age which was 16. The girl stole her jewellery and ipod, and not satisfied with that, punched and kicked her and stamped on her face as she lay on the ground.

The assailant only desisted when she heard the words, ''I think she's dead.'' Emily is still alive but she will be disfigured for life.

When her mother came to see her in hospital, she didn't recognise her. We will probably find out in the course of the trial if this was just street robbery or a definite hate crime.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 22, 2017 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MMM ... Something that I have begun to fret about now that I am old, thin and ill and walking with a pronounced limp is what I witnessed years ago in this street in Butetown when I was in my twenties ... in the first instance there was my elderly neighbour who was living in horribly reduced circumstances because as an office secretary she had never been paid much and thus had a very small pension and her house was in a very dilapidated state. I never got further socially with her than being provided with a chair in the hall where we sat and talked : after she finally left I carefully went trespassing to find out what state the house was in when it was put into an auction ... derelict : she lived in one room with one gas ring for both cooking and heating. The paper was peeling off the walls and the remaining curtains were rotting cobwebbed rags. She must have been about eighty and trudged off to the shops in her old coat held closed with a safety pin dragging one of those wheeled trolleys and as far as I can tell she was friendless before I arrived next door to replace Ephraim who had died two years previously.

Sue and Jackie used to share the house with me back then and I am ashamed to think that they were not as interested in her as in their hoped for boyfriends from the motorbike crew whom they brought back say 02.00 am and played loud music for hours - really pissing me off because I was often struggling to meet work deadlines - and perhaps scaring her. But what shocked me were the number of people who displayed open contempt and hostility towards her as she slowly trudged along pulling her trolley - and even more so was the number of people who deliberately kicked her door to scare her ... and this has happened to me recently ... One night when Jackie came in and before she and her boyfriend bedded down and put their records on they came to me and led me into the middle room - which was physically as close as we could come to where she lived in that room next door - and we stood there at gone 02.00 in the morning listening to her crying, bawling ... soon afterwards she gave up and left ... you know the people who sent these anti-social people into my street Marianne : The Labour & Cooperative Party - and other Democrats.

But you also know Marianne that The Labour & Cooperative Party have done the same in other places i.e. claimed a Demockeratic mandate to dump the problems from their own neighbourhoods into other people's thus winning themselves the approval and votes which keep them elected in their own wards. Besides my own experiences here ( not the one mentioned above but multiple other examples of disorder on our streets ) you are well aware of what Dafydd found dumped upon him and how very deeply it harmed him - but are you aware that it was not merely Dafydd's personal capacity to attract trouble ? I am thinking of that elderly man who lived around the corner from Dafydd in Splott who had some kind of glandular disorder or perhaps it was the drugs they gave him which gave him that odd balding appearance and swollen body and strange gait. Bad enough to be ill and have difficulty walking but with the general sanction for immoral behaviour being broadcast by The Labour & Cooperative Party the local children - even quite small ones - decided that this man was their legitimate prey to call names after, scream into the face of, kick at his legs and run away and of course throw stones at.

As you know better than I what the Labour & Cooperative Party's war against The People in Splott was like - I will leave you to tell the story.
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wojattaca



Joined: 04 Apr 2017
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 04, 2017 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like it
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marianneh



Joined: 30 May 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2017 12:38 pm    Post subject: ed Reply with quote

An old lady who lived in Splott had old fashioned and rather intolerant attitudes which I disagreed with. For most of her life until the 60s, sucide was a crime for which you could be imprisoned - attempted suicde I should say! There's not a lot of point in sending your corpse to prison.

The old woman was deeply religious in a legalsitic way. I would have expected her to think suicide was a sin as well as a former crime.

But she told me that she was so beaten down by the attacks on her by a notorious family with nine delinquent kids that she had been on the way to the chemists to get the pills to end it all with, when somebody talked her out of it.

It was the same family who persecuted Dafydd and his neighbours. I sent her a copy of the letter I wrote to the headmaster. She wrote back, ''I know just what that young man [Dafydd] has been through. I have been through the same myself. My sympathy is with him.''

She later told me that she had tried to get the police involved, but they admitted they were scared of the family themselves. A young policeman told me that the kids' grandfather had killed a man in a pub brawl in the 40s, and some of his sons had killed people by reckless driving.

He predicted that the most notorious boy in the family would undoubtedly kill someone one day.I was in the public gallery when one of the boy's cases came up. His counsel said that when he was called to advise the kid in a police cell, a policewoman gave him a computer print out detailing his client's former offences.

He said he felt the need to make inquiries as to whether she really was an experienced officer or if she was an ingenue who would believe anything. To his suprirse, it turned out that the boy really had committed at least one serious offence per day for the last - hwho knows how long? - and those were just the ones they knew about.

In telling how he had ridden the wrong way down a street on a stolen motorbike just when the infants school in the road was breaking up at 4 pm, the lawyer said he'd endangered the lives of the little children coming out of school and the female passenger on the plllion. He added, ''I think I am correct in saying that the danger he posed to his own life is not an aggravating factor.''
I thought, ''You can say that again!''

The solicitor added that there wasn't much point in sending him letters, telling him when to appear in court. He couldn't read and other key people in his famiiy couldn't read either.

He surprised me by saying this reflected his general level of intelligence.

The boy was involved in two rape cases but he never killed anyone except himself. Were you aware that he died of a heroin overdose in his early 20s?

He had a gang he could manipulate, but not all the local kids liked him. One of them sprayed graffiti around his parents' front door, calling him by a nickname which contained the word 'robot.' Maybe he was a bit mechanical, and not spontaneous.

The gang may have picked on Dafydd more after he started going out with a woman who appeared vulnerable, the one from Ayrshire.

You are much more likely to be picked on in the street if you have an unsteady gait or a definite limp or indeed any outer sign that can be seen as a weakness.

I know this from expereince. For the Son of Atos is hallucinating rather conveniently, in saying that Karin Not Goode saw me striding down the landing with an Amazonian gait like Xena Warrior Princess. If only it was true!

I've suffered bullying at school over my less than Amazonian physique, and intermittent harassment as an adult- oh and other variations on the theme - but this persecution by a government agency is making me think I never knew what real persecution over disability was, until the other day. It makes the hell I suffered seem a heaven.

Yes, the police and other agents of the state were at fault in not protecting the good folk of Splott in the 90s. But that the government is now doing the bullying itself - I can't get over that as it is not possible to evade it.

I don't see that it would be less likely to happen if we had a government chosen by some mandate other than democratic elections. But democracy hasn't prevented it happening either. I just want this reign of terror to stop.
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