I have been in a reading rut lately. I just haven’t wanted to read. It’s too tedious, too tiring, too much work. For the first time in a really, really long time I have been able to read and enjoy it. I’ve been fully immersed in the book to the point where I can see the beauty of the words, visualize the characters, feel their pain with them. Feel my heart skip a beat in my chest when I get to intense parts. And I’ve missed it. God, how I’ve missed it.
The book is Divergent by Victoria Roth. I won’t go into too many details, because you really need to read the book. But I came across this quote and it struck a chord with me.
“Every faction conditions its members to think and act a certain way. And most people do it. For most people, it’s not hard to learn, to find a pattern of thought that works and stay that way.” She touches my uninjured shoulder and smiles. “But our minds move in a dozen different directions. We can’t be confined to one way of thinking, and that terrifies our leaders. It means we can’t be controlled. And it means that no matter what they do, we will always cause trouble for them.””
Is this why you’re scared of autistic adults?
Is this why you try to silence us?
You can’t confine us. We speak out against injustice. We cry over the blood of those who have been murdered in the name of mercy. We don’t let you control us.
We kick ass and take names.
We let the bridges we burn light the way.
We do no harm and take no shit.
Does this scare you?
You cannot control us and we will cause trouble for you.
We’ll tell you that we don’t want a cure.
We’ll tell you that you are gas lighting and abusing us.
We’ll tell you that you’re being an ableist dungmuffin.
Are you scared?
In some ways, the “factions” that some autistics grew up in took place in the form of ABA, or autistic compliance training. They tried to make them compliment. They tried to make them fit the mold their parents wanted. Instead, they escaped with PTSD and wanting to raise hell. But because of their noncompliance, they are now speaking out.
Our minds are like having dozens upon dozens of Chrome tabs open. We think in different ways. We don’t always think the way we were brought up and the way we were trained to.
We are Divergent. We are social justice warriors (or clerics, or mages, or rangers, or bards, take your pick).
And we will not be silent.