Denialists & Gatekeepers: While CDC Ignores Autism Crisis, Experts Busy ‘Debunking’ Alternative Therapies

By Jefferey Jaxen

If the corporate media did its job, America’s skyrocketing autism rates would be one of the most important ongoing stories in the nation. 

Since roughly the 1990s, something new and terrible began happening to a generation of Americans: Autism. 

Beginning around that time, the number of children with autism has risen to epidemic levels. Has the medical community raced to the rescue? Did the media alert the public? Did the experts at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) scramble to find answers?

No.

CDC Statistics:

  • 2018: One in 59 children (1 in 37 boys) diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). 
  • Over the next decade, an estimated 500,000 autistic teens (50,000 each year) will enter adulthood
  • Risperidone and Aripiprazole are the only FDA-approved medications for autism-associated agitation and irritability.

These statistics beg many questions. The biggest: Why hasn’t the CDC labelled autism an epidemic or national crisis? 

The consistent rise in the number of those with autism suggests there is an epidemic or crisis, and it’s the CDC’s job to tell us why it is happening. Why are our politicians not asking where this huge spike is coming from? Why will the CDC roll out the red carpet after a relatively small handful of vaping injuries and deaths but stay silent on autism? 

And why hasn’t the CDC activated around autism as they did for measles? Which is worse?

Instead, we hear endless attempts to explain away and ignore the rising numbers of autistic Americans. Talking point attempts to explain away the alarming epidemic because of “better diagnosis” falls apart when examined. 

Were all these kids were around, and we failed to notice them before? And, if that’s the case, where are all the adults with autism? 

Note this “better diagnosis” appeal to authority is perfectly self-aggrandizing for a medical profession that missed the starting gun when addressing the root cause of autism. 

Cracks in the official stories have revealed the ‘better diagnosis’ narrative to be false. For example, law enforcement has had a new challenge to contend within communities across the U.S. – autistic children and adults. Many police departments are racing to understand and teach their officers how to properly handle situations that are very foreign to American police forces. 

Schools are begging for funds to meet the exploding populations of special needs students entering classrooms. A new report by California’s Legislative Analyst Office has revealed disturbing trends. Spending on special education students in California has increased by just over 20 percent over the past decade — from $10.8 billion to $13 billion in inflation-adjusted figures. The report goes on to say California’s special education system now serves some 800,000 students with physical, cognitive, and learning disabilities. Those students make up about 1 in 8 of California’s public school students. The biggest increase has been in the proportion of children diagnosed with autism, which has risen from 1 in 600 students in 1997-98 to 1 in 50 students in 2017-18 — a 12-fold increase.

Corporate media has tried to balance reporting of exploding incidences of police and individuals on the spectrum, special needs financial strains on schools and teacher shortages while at the same time trying to maintain the narrative that autism rates are not increasing. Corporate news outlets serve only one role in the autism epidemic: To shut down any discussion of a vaccine-autism link. 

These same outlets also work to eliminate reporting and news about alternative therapies and nutritional/dietary solutions that can help. The latest propaganda touts a study claiming gluten-free diets don’t help autistic children. Forbes contributor Steven Salzberg wrote an unscientific and disempowering conclusion in his article stating, 

This study should put to rest all of the claims that a gluten-free diet can somehow improve the symptoms of autism. It doesn’t provide an easy answer for parents…But let’s hope that parents get the message: don’t feed your autistic child a restricted diet.

Salzberg, who claims to be a professor, essentially hangs his hat on the settled science narrative by saying one study should put to rest all claims. 

The study Salzberg was reporting on found that none of the core symptoms of ASD were different between children in two groups, fed normal and gluten-free diets—two groups totaling only sixty-six children! Hardly an exhaustive scientific venture to end all debate about the positive effect of dietary changes in ASD children. 

Since there are only two FDA-approved antipsychotic drugs to help with autism-associated agitation and irritability—both with dangerous side effects—why are the media and the medical community casting simple nutritional changes in a poor light? Why does the news media work so hard to vilify a parent who wants to eliminate certain foods from their child’s diet that are known to create inflammation in the body?     

Amazon too, announced that it was digitally deleting books that contain alternative methods to help ASD children, despite positive reviews from parents of children affected by autism. 

Another false narrative: “Blame the victim,” using language from the late 19th-century eugenics movement. “Bad genes” has gained traction lately through industry propagandists. Appearing on Joe Rogan’s show, vaccine developer Peter Hotez had this interaction among others: 

Joe Rogan: Now, if we don’t know what causes autism…
Peter Hotez: We Do.
Joe Rogan: We Do? 
Peter Hotez: Well, we’re getting there very closely. 

Hotez went on to cite research claiming ‘bad genes’ can predict which kids will develop autism.  

Unlike the gluten-free autism study, which saw none of the core ASD symptoms improve, the results of a 2017 study by scientists at Duke University showed promising results.

Published in Stem Cells Translational Medicine, the study found “significant improvements in behavior observed in the first 6 months post-infusion and sustained at 12 months” after ASD children were injected with their own umbilical cord blood. 

If autism were purely genetic, the cord blood stem cells would have carried those same genetic anomalies, thus producing no change in the children. Since there was dramatic improvement observed in the study, the more significant, inadvertent conclusion points to autism not being a congenital issue, or the result of bad genes.  

The conversation goes beyond autism. 54% of kids today have a chronic disease condition. What happened? 

Genes don’t cause epidemics, especially at the rates America children have experienced autism and other chronic diseases. 

Genes supply a vulnerability an environmental toxin(s) can act upon and activate. If the CDC did acknowledge that autism was an epidemic, they would have to immediately hunt down the source of the environmental trigger(s).     

On the topic of vaccines, questions remain. A notice served to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), who is responsible for vaccine safety oversight, stated HHS’s claim that “Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism” improperly relies almost exclusively upon studies examining only one vaccine, MMR, or only one vaccine ingredient, thimerosal. 

HHS’s response does not explain why studies that exclusively evaluated one vaccine or only one vaccine ingredient, while ignoring the balance of HHS’s childhood vaccine schedule, support their sweeping declaration that “Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism.” 

HHS’s 2014 “comprehensive review” of vaccine safety even expressly stated it could not identify a single study to support that DTaP or Hepatitis B vaccines do not cause autism.

There are also no published studies showing that autism is not caused by vaccines for Hepatitis B, Rotavirus, Hib, Pneumococcal, Polio, Influenza, Varicella, or Hepatitis A. 

Ask your doctor about all this and see what he or she knows because journalists are not.

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