Comrade Saint, Black Hammer Times Staff,
Currently in amerikkka, African people have to deal with systematic oppression on every level. For Colonized African people it means dealing with systematic and social oppression on the basis of neurodivergency.
African autistic people pose a threat to white supremacy because they cannot be exploited easily.
African people in the imperial core exist to make profit under this system and when they cannot provide that they become waste. This is evident in the way that the collective Black autistic experience includes social isolation and suppression.
During slavery, euthanasia was a rampant way to keep property as efficient as possible. It was common practice to murder enslaved Black people for being “too simple.”
It was also common practice to punish those who interacted with the autistic person in question. This is why we must pay attention to the way the white nationalist state uses nuerodivergency as another way to separate us from each other; hindering us from uniting to the goal of self-determination.
In this case, it means moving away from the unconscious social shame around autism diagnoses and acknowledging how the system prevents unity amongst us.
The CDC acknowledges that about 1 in 54 children are diagnosed with autism. Even though autism diagnoses have more than doubled in amerikkka, white children are 19% more likely to be diagnosed with autism than African children.
This proves that early intervention and accommodations once again set Black children as young as 8 at a disadvantage. This is not a coincidence.
In 2016, researchers found that only 17.9% of studies acknowledged race and 63.5% of the participants in the studies were white. Researchers state that there is a push to acknowledge race in research. There is no mention of how this is a direct result of the state’s goal to continue oppression.
African children are 5.1 times more likely to be misdiagnosed, and this lack of care leads to cases like Osaze Osagie and Charles Kinsey going uncontested. The lack of attention to these police killings sends a message to the public: “there is no place for you here”.
As Colonized people we understand that exploitation only occurs because we are valuable. The state clearly cannot provide for neurodivergent people, so it’s up to us to build a world where we provide for each other, where all Colonized people are equal.
Very important article thank you for sharing this. I am autistic and have been in the movement for a little while now. I am being intentionally vauge because I do not believe that my exact identity is safe to share because of the general stigma around autism. I am able to pass (sometimes) and have been forced to learn masking. I have recently read how masking can lead to autistic burnout and what appears to be “regression” which an increase in sterotypically autistic behaviour. I can attest that this is 100% accurate from my experience and from my observations of other autistics. The culture of the African/Black revolutionary has been historically very abelist despite Africans with disabilities being some of the most dedicated and most impactful revolutionaries (Harriet Tubman for a very famous example). Nonetheless the non-autistic and mores specifically nuerotypical super culture which permiates this society has made it difficult for autistic people to fit in with Black revolutionary culture. Organizational structuers are often entirely antagonistic with autistic people. Expectations about levels of committment and types of performance and what those two ideas mean and what flexibility there is around them are very anti-autistic. Presumptions around communication are just as anti-autistic and bad for autistic people. Assuming people will need to create a certain type of deep interpersonal relationship is also not good as autistic people will often be more compelled by the sheer rational/logic reasoning behind a solid moral stance when deciding when to take this or that action. I notice that nuerotypical people are usually compelled by relationships and the legacy of past peer pressure in training their responses to situations. That is fine for nuerotypical people. That is also a way of learning that autistic people are sometimes capable of. However, making that way of learning and prioritizing things the expected default is anti-autistic. Even deciding which way of coming to the same actions is the best way is usually anti-autistic. This article is good, I have not seen an article like it which speaks about autistic people in relation to the Black revolutionary and liberation movements. I will continue to try and find more. Thank you for writing this