Posted by: Ticktock | October 16, 2008

Denis Leary is an Asshole on Autism

Denis Leary, the self-proclaimed asshole, trained his laser guided snark at autistic children in his latest book “Why We Suck: A Feel-Good Guide to Staying Fat, Loud, Lazy and Stupid.”

Leary was raised in Boston where you have to be a bully to survive, but attacking children with autism is a new low in the sad sad world of New England alpha dog machismo.  He not only attacks autistic children for being “lazy and stupid”, but he also blames the moms for being “inattentive” and the dads for being “competitive”.

“There is a huge boom in autism right now because inattentive mothers and competitive dads want an explanation for why their dumb-ass kids can’t compete academically, so they throw money into the happy laps of shrinks . . . to get back diagnoses that help explain away the deficiencies of their junior morons. I don’t give a [bleep] what these crackerjack whack jobs tell you — yer kid is NOT autistic. He’s just stupid. Or lazy. Or both.”

We’ve heard this nonsense before by Michael Savage, but that was actual hateful diatribe from a sincerely ignorant mass media tool.  Denis Leary doesn’t really believe this dreck; he just thinks it’s funny to say unthinkable mind-manure out loud so that he can get a giggle out of juveniles in middle school.  But, these jokes aren’t funny to parents who have to manage a child with autism, nor are they cute to the doctors and scientists who dedicate their lives to treating the hopeless condition.

Parents, especially, deal with the guilt and frustration of raising their autistic children without knowing how or what caused the symptoms, as evident in their convictions that it’s caused by vaccines.  I would almost rather have them accuse vaccines than blame themselves.

There is nothing funny about autism.

I’ll tell you what is funny, though.  McCain gaffed in tonight’s debate, saying that Sarah Palin has an autistic child.

“And I just said to you earlier, town hall meeting after town hall meeting, parents come with kids, children — precious children who have autism. Sarah Palin knows about that better than most.”

Oops.  He meant that she knows about Down’s Syndrome.  She knows nothing about autism.  That’s the type of thing you joke about… innocent mistakes.  Not about life long debilitating conditions.

So, yes, Denis Leary is an irrelevant asshole.  We get it.  Now he can go back to making sub par firefighter dramas on third rate cable channels.  We can all move on with our lives now.  The end.

*Update*:  Denis Leary backs off from attacking children of autism and their parents:

Leary now claims that the quotes were “taken out of context” and in a statement issued to E! said  “I not only support the current rational approaches to the diagnoses and treatment of real autism but have witnessed it firsthand while watching very dear old friends raise a functioning autistic child. The point of the chapter is not that autism doesn’t exist – it obviously does – and I have nothing but admiration and respect for parents dealing with the issue, including the ones I know. The bulk of the chapter deals with grown men who are either self-diagnosing themselves with low-level offshoots of the disease or wishing they could as a way to explain their failed careers and troublesome progeny.”

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Responses

  1. I normally love Leary’s approach (The “Asshole” music video is one of my favorites. I’m also a big fan of the crass Hunter S. Thompson.) But preying on the weak and then re-enforcing stereotypes and falsehoods that already put people affected by the problem at a further disadvantage, well, that’s just inexcusable.

    This reminds me of when I saw George Carlin (another comedian I normally enjoy) do a bit on “Fat People.” He basically used fat people as a symbol of excessive consumerism, though it was clear that Carlin had a personal problem with real overweight people. As if overweight people don’t have enough problems with discrimination and stereotyping.

    Thanks for writing this.


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