Whole Sort Of Genl Mish Mash
From “THE CULTURE OF AUTISM: FROM THEORETICAL UNDERSTANDING TO EDUCATIONAL PRACTICE” by Dr. Gary B. Mesibov http://www.teacch.com/teacch_i.htm
Culture refers to shared patterns of human behaviour. Cultural norms affect the ways people think, eat, dress, work, understand natural phenomena such as weather of the passage from day to night, spend leisure time, communicate, and other fundamental aspects of human interactions. Cultures vary widely in these respects, so that people in one group might at times find those from another culture to be incomprehensible or very unusual. Culture in the strict anthropological sense is passed on from one generation to the next; people think, feel, and behave in certain ways because of what others in their culture have taught them.
Autism is of course not truly a culture; it is a developmental disability caused by neurological dysfunction. Autism too, however, affects the ways that individuals eat, dress, work spend leisure time, understand their world, communicate, etc. Thus, in a sense, autism functions as a culture, in that it yields characteristic and predictable patterns of behaviour in individuals with this condition. The role of the teacher of a student with autism is like that of a cross-cultural interpreter: someone who understands both cultures and is able to translate the expectations and procedures of the non-autistic environment to the student with autism. So to teach students with autism, we must understand their culture, and the strengths and deficits that are associated with it.
… Because the organically-based problems that define autism are not reversible, we do not take "being normal" as the goal of our educational and therapeutic efforts. Rather, the long-term goal of the TEACCH programme is for the student with autism to fit as well as possible into our society as an adult. We achieve this goal by respecting the differences that the autism creates within each student, and working within his or her culture to teach the skills needed to function within our society. We work to expand the skills and understanding of the students, while we also adapt environments to their special needs and limitations.
While Mesibov’s article is about autism and not homosexuality, I think Mesibov illustrates well enough the modern tendency to lay aside attempts at remediation in deference to the more politically correct practice of changing cultural norms. I happen to disagree strongly with his approach because of the low expectations it engenders, but I disagree just as strongly with the notion that the focus ought to be myopically on remediation.
So what do I think? I think we ought to consider developing therapeutic technologies aimed at remediating homosexual behavior when it begins to develop as an alternative to PC "acceptance" WHILE encouraging cultural compassion for the struggles homosexuals face.
Interestingly, behaviorally-based therapeutic alternatives to Mesibov’s approach that have a high rate of success in removing the future need to adapt environments to accommodate the debilitating effects of the neurological dysfunction. Incidentally, because Mesibov’s approach is roughly 1/3rd the cost of behavioral therapy, it is the most commonly used. While on its face, Mesibov’s approach in touting “acceptance” may appear compassionate, I believe it is unnecessarily forcing people to live with the dysfunction’s debilitating effects.
In the same way, your apology, while seemingly compassionate, actually contributes toward a culture that would force people to live with the debilitating social and sexual effects of homosexuality without any other alternatives.
You can say all you want that I'm clinging to outdated morals as the result of fear, but that doesn't make it true. Why can’t a discussion regarding remediation of homosexuality as a sexual dysfunction be driven by compassion just as much so as your position? Don't you think such an option to homosexuals would be conducive to choice?