Tuesday, October 21, 2008

To The Mars, Alice!

What is Autism? Autism is a one-million seat rocket carrying American infants and toddlers on a government-funded Every Child By Two field-trip to Mars.

At stardate -331782.21835362754, the launch directors know something is terribly wrong with their rocket. They discover they screwed up and the rocket in flight is going to miss the intended planet so badly that there isn't enough money in the budget to pay for a recovery mission.

They also momentarily consider the cost in human resources. They learn that a single lost of life is a tragedy, but a million losses of life is just statistics. They hold bullet meetings all over the place and quickly detach themselves as a means of self-preservation.

As snowballs are known to grow, rather than inform the parents of this tragedy, essentially the entire launch operation has bolted the doors and not allowed anyone in or out. They reassure themselves that they are the experts and vaunt in front of each other approvingly at their secret public meetings held behind closed doors.
To spare themselves of an emotional bad day they are told to cut off all communications with their rocket. The unsuspecting children are left entirely abandoned hurtling through space.

Most of the mothers and fathers have that internal instinct that tells them the silence means something is wrong.

At first, the parents gathering at the launch site by the seashore are united, courteously waiting for some word. Only problem is the launch directors have avowed to never disclose, not a thing. They convince the media to embargo the entire story, and hire PR specialists to do the rest.
Many parents can't deal with reality. They convince themselves that "no word" from ground control means nothing is wrong. They can't see the rocket and accept their star-voyagers are all well.
Others hear talk, but decide to accept the loss of their children trusting that at least future space field trip rules will be written in the blood of their children.

Some parents look around and discover they are well-equipped and well-connected enough to handle things. They slip away from the crowd and start packing for just another road trip.

Then there are those parents who refuse to accept this failure. These Parents of La Mancha can not accept life as it is. They burn in their hearts to make things as it should be. They have all the heart to do battle with all the dragons, but their hearts are really broken. Their faith among faithlessness forces them to rip their broken hearts out for all the world to see too often and they burn out a lot.
They want people to see their love and devotion. They hope that putting a face on the tragedy will change things for others.

Another group of parents sell the house and try to swim to Mars. They've seen other parents have rescued their kids, but they don't have much to say and certainly just want to put it all behind them. Those willing to swim to Mars learn you gotta have a rocket. It takes money to make it to Mars and back. Their recovery plan requires ground control to admit their mistake and pay them compensation.

Ground control smiles because they know the point of no return. The statute miles of limitations are logging away. The bottom-feeders are brought in to clean them up.

After a while, the launch directors assess their risk management works A-OK, they've got paying sponsors and lots of rockets to fire, so they announce that more field-trips will be launched.

That's Autism.

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