Sunday, September 19, 2010

Imagine My Surprise

As you might expect, the restaurant in Carolina Beach, NC, that received national and even worldwide media attention for putting up a sign prohibiting screaming children is being sued by the parents of an "autistic" child.

The confrontation between the traditional US culture of courtesy and respect for good manners and the modern culture of permissiveness and rudeness exemptions for damned near everyone can't be clearer than in this case, folks. The people bringing the complaint in this case aren't so much concerned about "autistic" children as they are about forcing their will on a business owner that they don't agree with, and are using the US government to do it.


wally said...

I have a beef about this post, but it's not about the restaurant owner. It's about your enclosing the term autistic in quotes, implying that it's a bogus diagnosis, like ADD or gambling addiction. There are people quite close to me who suffer from autism, and I can assure you that it's a very real and tragic condition. I have never run into a medical professional who questioned the legitimacy of the diagnosis. You should at least read the Wikipedia entry about it, Robert. It might change your mind about adding those quotes.

Bob said...

@wally: I used quotes for the word autistic not because I doubt the existence of the condition, but because in the current case I believe that unscrupulous individuals will use the condition as a means of excusing the misbehaviour of their brat children. If the restaurant owner makes an exception for autistic children, how on earth is she to verify it? It can't be done, which is why the current complaint is being brought.

Similarly, in recent times when a murderer was caught red-handed and beyond all doubt, the defense lawyer would invariably offer the insanity plea, until the Supreme Court closed off that defense; now the same defense lawyers routinely plead the murderer not guilty by reason of being retarded, since the Supreme Court hasn't yet closed off abuse of that defense.

wally said...

Robert, forgive me for being sensitive to this subject and misinterpreting your intention in using the quotes. But your first use of them is in reference to a specific individual, who is identified in the article as the parent of an autistic child, and is therefore needlessly misleading.

wally said...

Also, you must know that "retarded" is a status that is measured by a numerical IQ. There are long-standing legal precedents that a defendant be able to understand the charges against them, and mental retardation is one of the measurements used to determine that. You can argue that standard if you like, but a defense attorney would be open to charges of malpractice if he didn't apply it. By the way, our governor has just approved the execution of a woman whose IQ is a few points above the legal definition of retardation, for that very reason. The system works both ways.