That is the question a Swedish evening newspaper has taken up in an editorial. Instead of looking at why Swedish classrooms are rowdy nowadays and Swedish schools now rate poorly, in the world statistics, the newspapers focused on the poor teachers. Teachers who go on sick leave because they can’t handle their job situation. Teachers who get burned out and psychologically broken. The newspaper more or less blames it all on a few rowdy pupils, whom the teachers are not allowed to touch. And when they have touched them, the parents have had them reported. The newspaper’s very subjective biased view is that it is not right, that the parents have this right and that officals stand on the parents’ side. The example of a rowdy child, which was reported having disturbed the class by filing on his desk with a ruler, was given. And the newspaper was outraged that the teacher, who brutally removed the child from the classroom and did win in court, has been unofficially told via officials that what was done, was wrong.
What the story did not tell, was that the boy has Asperger’s and ADHD. And he can not cope, so he moves his ruler over his hair and desk, in frustration, which is something his mother described on Facebook. Most people admire her for answering the newspapers accusations. But one man in particular, decided to tell her, one thing or two. He decided to point out that he has nothing against children with autism at all. They have all the right in the world to get an education and be taught by teachers and assistants who have the education for it. Notice something here? That sort of school doesn’t exist in Sweden! Except in a few cases where parents have started them up. Independent schools who only take in about 6-8 pupils. Not good enough when one in every 48 child in Sweden has the diagnosis of autism! Let alone all the ones with ADHD.
The man went on to say, that the only thing which matters to him is that his seven year-old son gets the education he is entitled to and gets all the attention from his teacher, that she is currently giving a special needs child. He also pointed out, that his child should not have to get physically hurt in school by these rowdy children. That school can not cater to a minority, that the majority are the ones who rule and must rule.
I felt so insulted that I had to answer the man, but also the mother who explained what had happened to her son in school. The politically correct thing in today’s Sweden is to say that of course these children deserve education but what the majority does not understand, is the fact that there is no money to do so in the way these children can thrive and cope. They are thrown in to the fish pond and only the strongest and fittest will survive. And it for sure is not the neurologically handicapped children. Today’s Swedish school with 30 pupils in each class, is definitely not set up for these children to melt in to, to learn a single thing and to be able to cope. The pupils who create havoc in the classrooms are usually children with ADHD or autism who are having meltdowns. They are not having meltdowns because it is fun to ruin the lesson, which is what this man’s impression seems to be. In my answer to him, I quoted Ellen Notbohm’s book “10 things every child with autism wishes you knew” and Naoki Higashida’s book “The Reason Why I Jump” (him being the expert since he is autistic himself), in that these children can not be blamed for their behaviour, because that assumes that they have planned their actions. Which is not something they even can do.
I also pointed out that the way that he spoke, of THEM as being in minority and that they have to bend and fit in to the scheme of the majority, smacked of 1930s Nazism. What are we parents supposed to do when school does not work? When our children have meltdowns and it affects THEIR precious little normal children? Have them put to sleep or what? Maybe I am too assertive, but that is what it all boils down to in the end, isn’t it. They want our children to go away. My son’s classmate tells him “I wish you would die!” What are we going to do with this minority which will not comply to society’s look on things, a society which only has one view of how things ought to be done. Who can’t accept that some people do not fit in to the mold because of the lack of dopamine (Autism) or over-production of it (ADHD).
There was a time, when it was not alright to say that the Jews deserved to be exterminated in Auschwitz. Today, all of Europe screams for the extermination of Israel and of course that means the extermination of the Jews in it. Imre Kertész wisely said that what did not used to be politically correct to say outright in Europe, is now alright to both think and say. And when the Jews are gone from Israel, then the extermination will move on to the rest of the world’s Jewry. Why do I bring it up here? Because it is not that many decades since Sweden sterilized un-desirables and lobotomized them. Sweden basically had its own T4 program. No, we did not herd all our handicapped people in to a lorry and had them gassed, like the Germans did in the 1930s, till they got busy with the war instead. But it doesn’t seem like people learn from history at all. And what the man told me rudely on Facebook, was sheer and utterly nazi-thoughts. Cleverly disguised as a concern for “autists”, as he called them. What a word! He said he had tender feelings for them but has nothing left over for people with ADHD. And he accused me of being un-modern or old-fashioned, when I claimed that neuro-psychologically handicapped children can’t help their meltdowns. He brought up an old law of 1900, where a drunk was excused for having caused a traffic accident, because of intoxication. His argument being that my ideas equal that law. Well, a drunk knows what he is doing when he puts that bottle to his mouth doesn’t he? That it will lead to intoxication and that under no circumstances should he really, sit down behind a wheel after consuming the bottle. What on earth does that have to do with autism and meltdowns?
Seriously, I have not bothered answering this man again. He has proven to the world what an idiot he is. His motives are selfish. His child is normal and should be shielded from handicapped people. And that is a parent’s prerogative. To decide how to protect his own child. BUT there is no excuse for the sort of ignorance people in this country have. They see the lack of funds in the schools. Teachers crawling on their knees with too much work. What on earth make them think that there is money for special needs children, when there is no money for anything else? It means that someone will suffer and it is not the normal children who suffer the most. It is the children with ADHD and autism. They KNOW that they are hated and still they can not control their behaviour. They react to everything that goes on around them. They are the sign of the time, they show how sick this society is. Indeed, they are the normal ones! The rest of us are like the frogs who are put in to a pot of water and who stay in that water till it boils and they die, never understanding what just happened. Our children refuse to stay in the pot! They fight their way out of the pot, they protest loudly, while we stay, accept the increasing heat, and die.
To evening newspaper Expressen I would only say this. Get your facts straight. Look at how the schools’ resource centers turn down most applications for extra funds, for children with autism. There is not even any use anymore, to try to apply for children with ADHD. Too many children have it. It would bring us to the level of Greece’s finances, if help was given to those children! Look at how many of these children are bullied by normal children, with fathers like the one on Facebook! Look at how these children get blamed for everything from morning to evening, every day of the year, get bawled out and screamed at by grown ups, and then write an article about self-esteem being totally absent in all these children! Look at how schools will not do the most fundamental thing like paying for someone coming in to teach personnel, from the resource centers, about the handicaps present at their schools. Look at all the free lectures and free help that can be brought in, providing someone like the headmaster sits down and surf on the internet, to find these things. The worse thing in Sweden today is the ignorance. That no matter what all psychologists say, habilitation, BUP, you name it, all the experts, deep down, the population with normal children are of the opinion that the only problem with these children, is really bad upbringing and that the parents want an excuse for their failure as parents. THAT is the root of all evil. If you can not get rid of that opinion, nothing will get better, but our children will eventually end up in institutions or a new T4 program.