“The Autistic Academic” blog has written an excellent response. You can read it here. Please link to other responses in the comments!
A key quote [emphasis author’s]:
Like every other anti-neurodiversity-movement piece I have read to date, this one gets the fundamentals of the neurodiversity movement very, very wrong. So wrong that it doesn’t even function as a rebuttal of the neurodiversity movement – it functions as a rebuttal of a straw movement inside the author’s head. This article is Gwendolyn Kansen talking to Gwendolyn Kansen.
Here’s what I mean.
“First off,” Kansen writes, “many of us aren’t high-functioning enough to benefit from depathologizing autism. The neurodiversity movement doesn’t have much to say about lower-functioning autistics, who are decidedly less inspirational.”
I’m not going to ask what Kansen intends to mean by “high-functioning.” The neurodiversity movement has exactly the same thing to say about “less inspirational” autistics that it has to say about “more inspirational” ones: Autistic people are human beings who deserve to have their full set of human rights respected.
The piece effectively moves through Kansen’s claims and keeps just repeating the refrain – human beings, human rights.
Anti-neurodiversity rhetoric tends to say that it only serves a small segment of people with intellectual or developmental disabilities. This is entirely wrong. The fundamentals of the neurodiversity movement focuses on universalities and breaking the high/low functioning discourse.
As always, please click over and read the whole thing.