So, not only did Autism Speaks quote Kassiane Sibley without her permission, portraying a well-known and vehemently anti-Autism Speaks autistic advocate as if she was a supporter of theirs.
They then claimed to have permission on her blog.
They then claimed they would take it down.
They instead white-texted it.
They finally took it down after being called on it…
… then they changed the URL and quietly put the white-texted version back up sometime last year.
Alyssa of Yes, That Too has a much better run-down of the whole thing here.
Their white texting makes their toolkit – in which they’re still using her words without her permission – come up on the first page of Google when you search her name. For some permutations, it comes up even before Kassiane’s own sites.
I won’t say this is a new low, because that would minimize all of the other vile shit they’ve done in the past few years (like partnering with an organization denounced at the UN for its torture of disabled people, driving their autistic members to resign in protest of their demonization of autism, and using racist dogwhistles to dismiss their critics, among many many many many others). It is, unfortunately, par for the course.
And, believe me, the irony of an organization that paints people like me and Alyssa and Kassiane as “not living” and possessed by demons finding it necessary to steal an autistic person’s work and go to such lengths to keep stealing it is not lost on me.
But this standard-operating-low hurts a friend of mine, and so it makes me angry. Tell Autism Speaks that they need to stop being disingenuous assholes and take that shit down.