Thank you Hilary. :-) Yes, we are also "using the power of social media to fight back against this isolation" and Facebook is still the chosen main platform for autistics+allies using their initiative to do so.
Aspergers Syndrome NZ is at https://www.facebook.com/groups/ASNZGROUP/ and welcomes folk both on the spectrum and related to them by way of care and special interest. From there one can progressively move out to 180 autistic-led groups covering a variety of support, information, discussion, and specialised matters, both local and global in nature.
As just one example, I have very much appreciated the tens of thousands who have taken time to share so much in the journey of my wider family's and my own need for information, and I consequently make quite an effort to hand what I learn on and encourage still more to chip in.
Autism pretty much still remains a 'greenfields' topic - wide open to development through Facebook and the spread of information from all other sources. I only hope Facebook can continue to develop to accommodate a greater variety of needs well into the future.
Thank you Russell, Fiona, Leo, Jimmy for the hard yards that publically helped make a new direction for autism and autistics the unstoppable phenomenon it is New Zealand. <3
ENGLAND RIOTS. NEW ZEALAND WATCHES SNOW FALL.
Arie Smith’s partner, Michael Davis, was incarcerated for 6 weeks for trying to get Arie to leave a collapsed building. But there is more to it than that. Much more.
Partly because of the utterly self-effacing manner of Michael, a man who clearly cares deeply for Arie, we have not before considered these cruelties inflicted on him:
1. Michael was subjected to a 3 month non-association order as a bail condition to stop him seeing his partner of 5 years – in the face of the obvious additional and special support they are to one another and the vastly greater need at this time for precisely those sort of supports. There have been a few valiant gay bloggers who have made worthy mention of this to date – but nothing like the national outrage I believe it demands and would receive if more widely known. It is a cruel, unusual and arbitrary punishment that not even mass murderers are ever likely to have imposed on them.
2. Michael was “punched in the back of his head by a female officer”, “dragged from the building like an animal”, and “spat upon like trash”.
3. Arie was held for 11 days, Michael for 6 weeks. Yet, let’s not forget it was Arie who was after the light bulbs, and Michael who was trying to stop him at the time of his arrest.
4. Arie and Michael lost their house, they lost their cats, and they lost their dignity when they were thrown into jail. (Not finding anyone able to store or care for their possessions meant choosing to donate a house-lot of furniture and other things to their neighbours).
5. Michael – very depressed - is now seeking couselling for what he has been put through, not that there is any on offer for ‘looters’ of course. He hardly sees Arie because they are on separate sides of the city until the whole court nightmare ends. Their wish is to move on, on to Invercargill and an attempt to restart their life.
[I personally think such evil deserves a good riot or two in response, but today I went outside to watch the snow falling instead. If there is anything anyone who reads this can do to raise awareness of the very cruel results of punitive police actions to-date, please do.]
Reminder: Next court appearance for Arie and Michael is on 22 August at 10am.
Dear John Key,
It's high time a good old-fashioned light bulb or two went ON down at Police National HQ. I know of a guy, Arie Smith, who would have kindly given them a couple for nix. Nice bloke.
But Police bashed him and took the bulbs off of him. Theft of his treasure - the previous owners were happy for him to have them! Still if you could get them back, I am sure Arie, being the type of guy he is, would gracefully share them with the charlies in Group Legal Services up the road in Molesworth Street.
All of us Aspies.
P.S. Thanks for the nifty hand with the Emma Swenson Case.
Screw 'em, Bayonet 'em, either way the light bulb gets the juice... and we get to empathise with your equal frustration at Police sinisterisms
Arie’s original lawyer, Simon Buckingham, intimated that Arie supported Police in general and was not looking to gain further attention for himself.
Arie, in the Sunday report, stated that… “coz of the punishment what I got I’m even too scared to go out” and “I don’t ever want to go to jail. It was terrifying” (Arie – suggesting why he was not up to making a complaint against Police.
Last night Arie referred to being punched in the back of the head. Michael, his partner, referred to Arie being elbowed in the eye.
[Enough for any citizen or resident to lay complaints with the IPCA, Human Rights, Police, and the appropriate Minister’s?]
A set of notes on the programme is here on Facebook.
Janet McIntyre's report compelling report rose to the occasion and hopefully will attract as many media awards as it has, or might, attract in the way of sinister Police threats.
Aspies quirky behaviour has been well defended before in Kiwi media - but not with the full inclusion of the voice of these people themselves - knowing they have the attentive backing of their own discrete Aspie community in this case. To see Arie and Michael plainly declaim the truth in all its startling simplicity was to see a 'first' occur on TV, with courage and honesty writ large, not the over-wrought claims of looting and feralness those with a political axe to grind shouted out.
Arie's "Look, a train, I love trains", when set against the phrase "The Evil Face of Looting" will, for my generation, neatly sum up the task before us: to ourselves lead the way to lifting this nation out of a general ignorance unworthy of the numbers 2, 0, 1, 1.
And, yes, Michael Laws, having shot his mouth off, needs to be questioing himself under his desk right now.