The Asperger’s Defense

September 18, 2011

While I was busy flitting around the Toronto International Film Festival, being a real, grown-up entertainment journalist, this story broke.

For those who don’t want to bother with the whole sordid tale, let me summarize for you. Some sociopathic douchenozzle who developed a fondness for trolling the bereaved family and friends of dead teenagers has been banned from social media for five years as part of his sentence for sending malicious communications.

As part of the trial, “The court heard that Duffy, who is unemployed, suffered from Asperger’s syndrome and lived a “miserable existence” drinking alcohol alone at home.”

Now, while I am somewhat employed, lead only a semi-miserable existence and tend to drink alcohol at home in the company of my husband (or at least my cat) I still think that our situations are close enough that I can safely say none of these things can explain – let alone excuse – his behaviour.

The cruelty and general fuckery of this man’s online crusade are in a completely different universe from the emotional cluelessness or lack of empathy that tend to be associated with Asperger’s. And most people with AS that I know or have associated with online aren’t even that empathetically-challenged. In fact, many of them suffer from an overwhelming sense of empathy that they can’t understand or regulate which, in my experience, leads to a type of callousness akin to the one that EMTs develop; if we didn’t steel ourselves against the constant exposure to pain and suffering in some way, we wouldn’t be able to function.

So, for anyone – be it the offender, his lawyer, or the media – to try to attempt to associate this guy’s repulsive behaviour with a condition that he may or may not have (let’s face it: cocks often co-opt my syndrome to explain their utter cockitude) is both erroneous and insulting.

As I’ve said before: Some people are just assholes. Some people have Asperger’s Syndrome. And some people who have Asperger’s Syndrome also happen to be assholes. But they’re not necessarily related.

And to anyone on the spectrum who might be tempted to use their autism as an excuse for something genuinely heinous and premeditated: don’t. Don’t drag the rest of us down because you decided to be a fuckface.

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3 Responses to “The Asperger’s Defense”

  1. Laurie Says:

    Testify!

  2. alcyonrambling Says:

    Amen, sister! This blog is helping me to expand my vocabulary too, kinda puts the “awesome” in awesometism! I’m still trying to get a handle on the whole empathy thing though…


  3. […] I just talked about this fucking nonsense! Like this:LikeBe the first to like this post. Posted by Sarah Kurchak Filed in Uncategorized […]


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