Children euthanized by Nazi's for being autistic: let's rename Asperger's Syndrome
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I am a year 11 student with ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder) who wants to make a moral correction. In light of the new information that has been released about Hans Asperger (of whom Asperger's Syndrome is named after) I want the NAS (National Autistic Society) to rename Asperger's Syndrome to ASD (Autistic Spectrum Disorder).
Hans Asperger was an Austrian Pediatrician who actively worked with the Nazi Eugenics Programme and studied autistic psychopathy. He then later diagnosed high-functioning autistic children with Asperger's Syndrome and sent them off to Am Spiegelgrund Clinic to be euthanized.
The Nazi ideology was to have a genetically 'pure' society and children who were in any means considered disabled were a burden to their family. Hence these children were deemed unworthy of life. Almost 800 children were sent to Am Spiegelgrund and were killed via the lethal injection, or were so malnourished that they died of starvation.
Autism in the present is presented in such a positive light. Some of us know someone on the autistic spectrum and consider them a joy to know. There's a few that could tell us a million things about their favourite subject off the back of their hand, while others need help constantly to perform basic tasks. Then there's characters representing us in the film industry like Drax out of Guardians of the Galaxy, who doesn't understand metaphors. We believe that we are worthy of life.
We don't want the name "Asperger" to be associated with us. Hans Asperger abused his power as a pediatrician to send children not so different to us off to die. All that name does is carry a death sentence that is over 70 years old. ASD I believe is a better term and is already used across Europe, Australia and Canada to diagnose autism. If we can get this moral correction done, it will be justice for those hundreds of children who were treated inhumanely. It will show the world that we are proud to be who we are and that we are worthy of life.
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