Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Dare to Dream: An Autistic Advocate’s Visit to the Kennedy Space Center, by Alec Frazier and Autistic Reality

I was in Florida for the 2017 meetup of fans of James Cameron’s Avatar. On one day during our meetup, we went to the John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC), our nation’s port in our adventure towards the stars.
Photo of Alec Frazier with Astronaut Mike Foreman
I started the day by hearing a briefing about our nation’s state of affairs in space. We have several programs taking place at the current moment, as well as partnership with several other nations. One of these greatest programs is the International Space Station (ISS), arguably the grandest symbol of international peace and cooperation ever produced by humanity, in which individuals from several nations and materials from several regions of the globe are used to work in unison for the betterment of mankind. We also learned that within a year and a half, Americans will continue launching into space from the Kennedy Space Center. After this briefing, we in the audience got to hear from Mike Foreman, an actual astronaut who had been on two missions. His first mission was as a general-purpose specialist on the Space Shuttle. On his second mission, he helped several others restock and resupply the ISS, and he even did two spacewalks. Resupply missions are vitally important, and maintain our continued presence in space. After giving his talk, people were given the opportunity to meet and have photos taken with Foreman. I met him, and he saw my Ithaca Is Gorges T-shirt, and asked if I had gone to Cornell. I told him I had gone to the State University of New York at Buffalo, but that Ithaca is my hometown. I told him that I do disability rights advocacy, and we each told the other how proud we are of each other’s work.
The Rocket Garden
After this, I had lunch with people from the fan meetup, followed by a tour of the Rocket Garden. The Rocket Garden chronicles our mission to perfect the ideal space going vehicle. In the beginning, we were literally using missiles intended for weapons to shoot people into space. These missiles were relatively small, and also gave a really rough ride, not at all intended for human beings. Our tour guide talked about the first few satellites, and the first manned space programs, Mercury and Gemini. We saw the rockets use to launch each satellite and program. Mercury was meant to see ourselves into space. There were no scientific goals, and no way to actually live in space. There were intended to be seven astronauts, but we wound up with six. The first two were sub-orbital flights launched by the Redstone missile. Unfortunately, the Redstone lacked the thrust to get us into orbit, but thanks to computers like Katherine Johnson, we learned that the Atlas rocket could. The Gemini program was meant to actually test how we could live in space. In Gemini, we ate, slept, spacewalked, did detailed tasks, and even celebrated Christmas. We also learned how to dock with other vehicles, how to manipulate the course and direction of our spacecraft, how to rendezvous with other spacecraft, and achieved other significant goals. The Gemini spacecraft were launched aboard the Titan II missile, which gave an incredibly rough ride. Finally, it was time to launch the Apollo program, and get ourselves to the moon. The first few Apollo launchers took place on the Saturn IB rocket, which launched us to Earth orbit in the Apollo capsules. The Saturn IB was also launched to get us to the Skylab space station. We saw all of these rockets, and more, and also tried out basic versions of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo space capsules.
The New Kennedy Space Center Headquarters Building
After this, I went to the gift shop, of course, and then waited for my friends. You see, we had booked the opportunity of a lifetime. We were going to be shown the headquarters facilities and launch facilities for the American space program. We started out being shown the Industrial Area Facilities of the Kennedy Space Center. It is here where the American space program and its missions are administered. A lot of activity is currently taking place! They are currently demolishing the old computer building, after building a new one. We saw both. Computers have gotten smaller and smaller, and so the space needed to contain them has as well. In addition, it is not a bad idea to have an updated building for such sensitive materials. There are also two headquarters buildings: the old one, which is being phased out, and the new one, which is just being finished. There is another building dedicated specifically to operations on the ISS. There are other buildings dedicated towards the development of outer space missions, as well as a communication center, a gas station, and a fire station.
Vehicle Assembly Building
Next, we got to see the Launch Pad 39 Complex. For the longest time, American rockets and space vehicles have been constructed inside the massive Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB). The VAB is the sixth largest building in the world by volume. The volume of the Empire State Building could fit inside it five times. It is 526 feet in height. The American flag painted on its side is 21 stories tall, and each star is 6 feet across. Rockets and other space vehicles are built inside it on top of mobile launch platforms, and then wheeled out to one of the launch pads in the complex. Because of the massive weight that the mobile launch platforms must transport, they move incredibly slowly. Much more slowly than the walking human being. There is a joke that if someone sees a turtle walking the same direction in front of the mobile launch platform, they should let it be, because it will get to its destination more quickly than the launch platform will! There are also several buildings surrounding the VAB, including buildings formerly used to outfit the Space Shuttle, which are currently used for outfitting other vehicles. The military is also using one of these buildings for a top-secret project. In addition, there is a launch control Center next to the VAB, and the nearby area for the press.
Alec Frazier with the Launch Pad 39A
We next went to see Launch Pad 39A. Over half of the Space Shuttle missions launched from this launch pad. More importantly, every single mission that humanity launched to the moon launched from here as well. The fact that we have gone to the moon is the realization of an incredible dream, the journey of mankind. At the next stop, we got to see that journey up close and personal.
The Firing Room in the Apollo/Saturn V Center
As you enter the Apollo/Saturn V Center, you learn about the absolute failures of the early American space program, and how achieving any real progress in space seemed like a pipe dream at the beginning. You are shown the failure of rocket after rocket, failures so horrible that they look like a bad blooper reel. Then you learn about the launch of the Mercury program, and the challenge a few days later by President John F. Kennedy to land a man on the moon and get him safely home by the end of the decade. That was a truly Herculean task to live up to. They talk about the progress of the early Apollo program, and the tragic loss of the crew of Apollo 1. Then, you are led into the Firing Room. The Firing Room is the exact same launch control room that was used during Apollo 8, the first manned launch of a Saturn V rocket. This is the biggest and most complex machine ever produced by mankind. In the Firing Room, you are on pins and needles as you witness the successful launch of Apollo 8. Then, as if in a dream, you are led to see the stunning achievement of humanity. 
The Engines of the Mighty Saturn V
Here, laid on its side before you, is the massive Saturn V rocket. It is the biggest, most complicated machine ever created by man. There is only one that has been maintained intact into the current day, and it stretches out before you, seemingly endlessly. Alongside it are the mission patches of the various Apollo missions, hanging from the ceiling. There are also various artifacts, including a bona fide Command and Service Module (CSM), as well as a Lunar Module (LM). There is also a mockup of the cockpit of the LM so that you feel like you’re actually there on the moon.
Apollo 14 Command Module Kitty Hawk
There are other artifacts as well. There is the command module of the Apollo 14 mission, which was given the callsign Kitty Hawk, after the location of the first heavier than air flight. There is a moon rock for you to touch, and an equipment wagon and a lunar Rover made for lunar operation.

Statue of Snoopy
There are space suits, various lunar artifacts, and Snoopy… Wait a second… Did I just say Snoopy!? Well, you see, several the Apollo program engineers started informally drawing Snoopy, so they asked peanuts cartoonist Charles Schultz whether they would be allowed to make the famous beagle’s likeness. He said no, absolutely not, but that he would make it for them. As such, Snoopy became sort of the mascot of the Apollo program, and there is a statue of him in a spacesuit. However, try as they might, NASA physicists cannot figure out how his nose would have fit into the helmet. An intractable problem for the ages!
The Doors from the Apollo 1 Capsule
There is also a monument and a gallery dedicated to memorializing the astronauts lost in the Apollo 1 mission. At the time, American spacecraft used a pure oxygen atmosphere. If one remembers the Hindenburg disaster, they will recall that hydrogen is combustible. Oxygen is not combustible, but it is incredibly flammable. Some electric equipment sparked while the Apollo 1 crew was having a test on the launchpad. The triple-layer door was too difficult to open, and they all completely cooked in the capsule. Those doors are on display in the gallery. Because of this terrible accident, over 38,000 changes were made to the engineering of American space technology, many of which still last to this day. These changes have saved many, many lives. The door now takes a fraction of the time to open, and the atmosphere aboard all American spacecraft now has mixed content just like Earth’s atmosphere instead of being pure oxygen. Some people will die in our quest for space, that is a given. The quest for the stars is too great a dream, though, and we should never lose sight of our goal.
Mars, Space, Earth, and the International Space Station behind the Darkened Apollo 11 Landing Site as Neil Armstrong Speaks on the Dream of Mankind
Finally, you head into the Lunar Theater, where the landing of the Apollo 11 Lunar Module, Eagle, is actually reenacted on stage in front of you. You see video of astronauts both playing and studying on the moon. The American flag is planted, and there is more video of those same astronauts talking about the terrific wonders that we have achieved. The ascent module then lifts off to join the command module Columbia and head home. There is then video of the dreams of children, many of whom wish to go into space. Finally, the late Neil Armstrong appears on video. He talks about how, when he was born, we had just managed to cross the Atlantic by airplane. He says that when he was a kid, he thought that landing on the moon would take place centuries into the future, and certainly had no clue that he would be the first person to do so. He states that we came not from one country, but in peace for all mankind. He says that you should never be afraid to dream. The vision of Mars appears on stage. Our guide at the Kennedy Space Center confirmed to us that NASA plans to get us to Mars and back safely by 2035. That is within my lifetime. What once was considered impossible is now attainable
Alec Frazier Speaking at the US Capitol
Now for a personal story. When I was in early elementary school, the authorities behind the school tried to have me locked up for the rest of my life. They said that I would never amount to anything, and that there was no use in trying. My loving family fought tooth and nail, and parents and professionals, as well as friends, raised me into who I am today. I have since made endless friends, graduated from college with a master’s degree, gotten an excellent job, and helped change the lives of millions, especially those of us with disabilities. Never, ever be afraid to dream. Dreams are attainable. The impossible is possible.

The late Carl Sagan was fond of saying that we are all made of star dust. In our journey to the stars, we are simply going home. Thank you, for joining me on this tour.

This blog posting is both the personal opinion of Alec Frazier, and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

SUNY University at Buffalo Alumni Survey, by Alec Frazier and Autistic Reality


  • Person’s name: Alexander Frazier, but you can call me Alec
  • Occupation/Profession: Disability rights advocate, Director of Autistic Reality, DBA, and Editor at BBDO Worldwide
  • Years in Profession: I have been a disability rights advocate doing public speaking and lobbying for the cause since at least 1994, when I was in third grade. I have received payment for disability rights services since a few years later.
  • Description of job: As Director of Autistic Reality, my own disability rights firm, I do public speaking, lobbying, peer advocacy and mentoring, surfing on a number of panels and committees, and many other various and sundry services. As an Editor for BBDO Worldwide, I edit stories written by disabled authors and others, as well as producing my own content. Pay for my position as Director of Autistic Reality takes place whenever funds are available. Pay for my position at BBDO Worldwide is $25 an hour.
  • College: My bachelor’s degree was in the College of Arts and Sciences. My master’s degree was interdisciplinary, but was managed by the College of Arts and Sciences.
  • Major: My major for my bachelor’s degree was in political science. My major for my master’s degree was in disability studies.


Questions:


1. What core skill sets, knowledge, or experiences do you feel will best prepare a current college student interested in pursuing work in your field?

Any college student with disabilities such as myself should be well-versed in how to receive accommodations from the college or university in question. For example, I needed my textbooks in electronic format, and also needed assistance with writing exams and papers, which was provided by voice-activated software both at home and that the school. I provided my own at home, but the school provided the software for exams. More importantly, having an accommodations office that is nice to you and honest with you and recognizes their own shortcomings is crucial. Having professors who meet the accommodations guidelines is also extremely important, not to mention the fact that it is the law. This addresses some concerns that people with disabilities may have whilst obtaining a college degree.

Moving beyond basic concerns, internship experience is extremely important for someone engaging in the disability advocacy fields. The school’s disability studies program requires either a thesis or internship experience. In my opinion, internship experience should be the only option. Nothing prepares the advocate like actual experience in the field. That said, there are limited opportunities in Buffalo, and, more importantly, the disability studies program lacks proper personnel, resources, and funds to explore new internship experiences. As such, the internship options are extremely limited. I only had my internship options available because I had an “in” with the organization I interned with. In my opinion, the school’s disability studies program should also have those connections, which means having the time, resources, and personnel to develop them.

The ultimate internship experience for someone engaging in disability studies who has disabilities themselves, such as myself, is the annual summer internship for the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD). This internship would be extremely difficult to render as a school experience, but the school can foster connections to it. An amazing percentage of current disability leaders are coming from the pools of people who have gone through this internship. It also teaches about the national disability rights movement, its history, its composition, its socioeconomics, and its politics.


2. If you were in a position to design a college program from the ground up specifically to prepare students to enter your field, what would you ensure was included (specific training, course content, experiences, etc.)?

First, one must understand that there is nothing like a disability studies master’s. It is to the disability field as gender studies or women’s studies are to sexuality and gender issues. It is not a medical degree, and takes pride in not being one. Instead, it explores disability from a philosophical point of view, and is extremely heavy on coursework and material. There is a growing opinion of people in the disability rights field and other rights movements that people with my master’s degree should be doing much of the work that social workers are currently doing. I concur. Social workers do not have the in-depth training and sensitivity necessary to the disability rights movement and philosophy. We do.

I have already mentioned working with the AAPD. In addition, the disability studies master’s at UB should work much more extensively with other national disability organizations such as the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL), the US Business Leadership Network (USBLN), and a number of other organizations. To this end, there should also be extensive classes in disability rights organizations and their philosophies, as well as training in various disability rights movements. Training in the independent living movement (IL) is especially crucial to this degree. A great deal of disability rights work uses the IL movement as a guide, and students in any school’s disability studies program should be made aware, and well-versed in their credo and techniques.


3.         Were there specific experiences, courses, or content you received in college that helped you succeed in your career?

A number of my courses were extremely important to my current career. Master’s courses like American social history, disabled veterans, accessible design, a history of madness, and the at least three disability-oriented classes I took for that degree as well. A number of the papers I did for that class have been or are getting published, and not just published online, but as actual printed books. One of the papers in particular has helped me get business with Marvel Entertainment, of all people, and many appearances at comic con throughout the Northeast. Make no mistake, I love doing literature reviews, and my current employer is paying me handsomely to do a number of literature reviews in that vein. That is a huge benefit from my master’s classes.

A number of the bachelor’s classes were also very important. My constitutional law classes taught me a lot about people’s rights, how they developed, and what people are entitled to. I took a disability anthropology classes in undergrad as well. Believe it or not, the Magic, Sorcery, and Witchcraft class taught by Philip Stevens has been cited often in my experience, as it teaches that whatever one believes to be real is real to them. It also teaches a number of cultural nuances that I have not learned anywhere else in my academic training. Other political science classes such as legislative politics, politics abroad, and American presidency have also been very important.

The internships were also incredibly useful in gaining practical experience. My internships were at the local independent living network, as well as another local disability rights center. Nonetheless, I suggest that the school develop disability studies internships with places like the local psychiatric center, local autism services, and other disability agencies in town. Perhaps even working with county and state agencies in the area, as well as other organizations that provide services for the disabled, would be incredibly beneficial. I know, however, that convincing some of these organizations to lead a student in would be difficult, especially because my degree is not a medical one. There is an inherent bias in favor of the medical model of disability over the social model. Please look up these two models. They would broaden your horizons significantly.


3. Are there specific experiences, training, content you wish you received in college that you think could have helped further your career?

In addition, having a disability rights network in school would help a great deal. More specifically, I mean a student organization, not one run by the Wellness Office or Accessibility Resources, or the Intercultural Diversity Center (IDC). During my time at UB, I received patronizing disservice from all three of those offices, under the intent to help. In fact, it is a well-known fact that the only true disability rights organizations are those that are disability-run.

You may not know this, but UB had a disability-run disability student union for over twenty-five years. They were known either as the Disability Student Union at UB, or as The Independents. I have worked with a number of their former members. The reason why they no longer exist is because UB was and in some cases still is inaccessible in many ways, and the members of this student union tend to sue the school for their rights when necessary. UB has since changed its admissions standards to discriminate against certain disabilities that tended to unionize at school.

I have noticed a great deal of discrimination against the disability population by offices such as Wellness, IDC, and even accessibility resources. We need to recognize that this is an issue. We need to stop saying sorry and talking about the problem and instead actually work to fix this. For example, I have noticed IDC talking a very good game about inclusion, but when it comes down to it, they’re not at all inclusive of people with disabilities. In fact, at one point they emailed me asking for a written response. When I politely asked for more time due to my writing disabilities, they accused me of litigation and referred me to their legal team. I understand that in the SUNY system in general, but also at UB, the administration is incredibly wary of such things. However, in this case, that is outright halting your inclusion of the populations you claim to embrace.

There is actually a current disability group at UB called UB Accessible. It is an absolute insult the disability rights movement. It is run by people without disabilities, and has no requirement that people with disabilities have any say in it. It has a lot of funds, and a lot of publicity, and has almost nothing to do with the actual viewpoints of people with disabilities.

I would gladly accept the opportunity to speak at your school, or work with you, to ensure proper inclusion.


5.         What problems, frustrations, or concerns do you see with recent college graduates entering your field these days?

There is one, gigantic frustration for people like me. People with disabilities. The unemployment rate for persons with a disability was 10.5 percent in 2016, about twice that of those with no disability, which was 4.6 percent. In Buffalo and Erie County, the unemployment rate for people with disabilities is much, much worse. Once again, solving this problem is discussed quite frequently, but doing things about it is not. UB talks a good game about employing those with disabilities, but in reality, it does not. UB does not employ very many people with disabilities. In addition, alumni networks should really network with disability organizations. My alumni network in Washington, DC should network with national disability rights organizations, since we are all right here in the national capital region.

Another fact that should be mentioned is that, although my training is in disability rights, the actual job I managed to get his for an advertising firm. I do plenty of work in disability rights, but the actual job is as editing and compiling written records for publication. A great deal of work in the disability studies field is a catch-all. It may not be what you initially looked for, and it may not even be what you are seeking, but it could still be a decent or even amazing job. That is a large benefit to my master’s degree in disability studies: the fact that it was interdisciplinary, and engaged in a great deal of training in social theory, not just in disability.


6.         Are there any other issues or suggestions you would like to provide us as we work to overhaul our curriculum to better serve our students and potential employers like you?

I do believe I have covered most of it. I don’t believe that I can remember everything at this time, but I will leave you with some parting advice.

Life is wonderful. Life is what you make of it. There is limitless potential, and endless opportunity. Having an education only increases that potential, that opportunity. If you are having a tough time finding work, never give up, and be flexible. Everyone has the right to succeed. You will, too.

This blog posting is both the personal opinion of Alec Frazier, and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!

Friday, September 22, 2017

He Belongs to the City: A Film Review of Good Time, by Alec Frazier and Autistic Reality

Connie Nikas Coming Out of A Bottle of Acid in a Poster for Good Time
The film Good Time, directed by the brothers Benny and Josh Safdie, is an absolute thrill ride and it epitomizes how a very good film can be made on a small budget.

Summary:

Connie and Nick Nikas in a Poster for Good Time
Robert Pattinson stars as Connie Nikas, a Resident of Queens of Greek descent. He cares a great deal about his brother, Nick, played by Benny Safdie, and does try very hard to do right by him. Connie shows up at the beginning of the film to take his brother out of a counseling session. You see, Nick has developmental disabilities, and Connie just wants to do right by him. Of course, the counselor also wants to do right by him. The views of family members versus the views of “the system” often conflict. Often there is not a clear answer of who is in the right. On the one hand, the questions during the counseling session are making Nick cry, on the other hand, Connie does not have the best of intentions either.

The main thrust of the film starts when Connie manipulates his brother Nick into attempting a bank robbery with him. A chase ensues, and Nick gets arrested. Connie tries to use the stolen money to get Nick out on bail, but since the money is dirty, he ends up having to go to his girlfriend, the significantly older Corey Ellman, who is played flawlessly by Jennifer Jason Leigh. Ellman has quite a fickle personality, and this obviously means that she has a great deal of trouble making decisions. This is further evidenced by the fact that she lives with her mother, with whom she has a bad relationship; they bicker and argue frequently. Connie lies to Corey about the reason why his brother is in jail, but it is all for naught as when Corey tries to use her bank card to bail Nick out, she finds that her mother has canceled it. The night spirals downward even further from here.

Nick had gotten into a fight with another inmate, and was placed in a hospital under guarded supervision. Connie finds out which hospital, finds the police guarding a room, and breaks out the heavily bandaged man handcuffed in that room. He proceeds to further manipulate his way to a very bad neighborhood in residential Queens, and into an old lady’s house, where he attempts to distract her 16-year-old granddaughter, Crystal, played by newcomer Taliah Lennice Webster, with sex. Keep in mind that Robert Pattison is 31, and we are to assume that Connie is of a similar age. The inmate Connie broke out of the hospital wakes up, and pries off his bandages, only to reveal that he is a stranger, Ray, played by Buddy Duress. Connie manages to calm him down with painkillers, and they trick Crystal into accompanying them on a trip in her grandmother’s car.

References on the television throughout the film infer that law enforcement is getting closer to finding Connie, we also see police talking to people seen previously in the film. We learned that Ray had a wild ride of his own the previous day, and left a bottle full of acid and a bag of cash in an amusement park ride a few streets down from where he, Connie, and Crystal are currently laying low. Ray and Connie break into the amusement park, leaving Crystal in the car. They are cornered by Dash the security guard, played by Barkhad Abdi. Dash calls the police, but Ray and Connie managed to overwhelm him. Connie then impersonates the security guard, and the paramedics and police take away Dash, who has been force-fed some of the acid. At the same time, Crystal is also taken in for questioning. Connie and Ray escape to Dash’s apartment in his security vehicle. Upon arriving at the apartment, it is becomes apparent that Dash engages in illicit activity as he is living well above his means. Connie has Ray call his dealer and demands the cash he needs to bail out his brother Nick. The dealer leaves, ostensibly to get the cash, but in actuality to get a gun with which to kill Connie. It is at this point that the police close in on them. Ray accidentally kills himself when trying to escape the apartment, and Connie is taken away by the police.

In the final scene, the therapist from the first scene in the film takes Nick Nikas to a boring, monotonous group activity for those with developmental disabilities, while remarking that Connie is now in the right place, and that Nick is in the right place, too.

Analysis:


This film is incredibly thought-provoking. It goes beyond questions of right and wrong, and into degrees of personal accountability. One thing that should be noted is that this entire film after the bank robbery and before the final scene takes place over the course of just one night. During that night, we get to delve deep into the psyche of Connie Nikas. It is extremely clear that he loves his brother a great deal. At one point, he tells Nick that it is just the two of them against the world. It is true that they both have a very aged grandmother, but she is incapable of looking after them. Connie obviously believes that the bank robbery will be simple and easy. He lacks foresight, and this makes him a poor planner.

After the robbery, Connie’s dive into further crime is gradual. It all starts with a lie he tells Corey as to why his brother has been incarcerated; he tells her that Nick lashed out against his therapist. Connie clearly does not like the idea of Nick going to therapy, and this is consistent with toxic masculinity as well as some Greek-American cultural norms, which believe that asking for help is a sign of weakness. Throughout the film, Connie consistently believes that things are either out of his control or most definitely not his fault, or both. For example, Crystal mentions that her last boyfriend was her drug dealer, who was significantly older than herself. This makes it a non-issue to Connie when he starts to force himself upon her a while later. Ironically, Connie later attempts dealing drugs himself with the bottle of acid.

It is as if Connie does not notice how deep he is slipping. He quite willingly suggests drugging the security guard and posing in his place. Breaking and entering into the amusement park is nothing to him. Given that Connie’s first significant act in this film is a bank robbery, we can only hazard a guess into his past, although we are made aware at one point during the film that he has a record; we see a past mug shot of Connie on the news.

Connie shows a great deal of willingness to manipulate others. He is aware that Corey has psychological issues that give her weakness and malleability, as well as a willingness to help with finances. It is hinted that before the events of this film, they were planning a trip to the Caribbean, perhaps to be assisted with the money from the bank robbery. Nick is also incredibly malleable, doing whatever others tell him to do. Connie uses this to his advantage in getting Nick to assist him with his various nefarious schemes. The therapist is equally able to convince Nick to do his bidding. It is not in Nick’s best interest to spend his days in monotonous, clinical group activities. However, Nick does not have an in-built group of friends, and the clinical system is still often ill-versed in the social needs of those with disabilities.

The amazing thing about Connie is that he probably believes that everything he has done, including the bank robbery and the actions of this fateful night are without question and in the right. Connie is extremely well-intentioned, but he has shown himself to be addicted to bad behavior, and even deeply sociopathic. The fact that he thinks nothing of kidnapping a 16-year-old girl or having sexual relations with her is proof of this. At one point, Ray asks him about his intentions. Connie makes it clear that he is focused on the here and now, and not the consequences of his actions. There is something deeply flawed about Connie Nikas, but he is portrayed in such a way that we can still have a tremendous amount of empathy for him.

Robert Pattinson on the Cover of Wonderland Magazine
This portrayal, of course, comes courtesy of Robert Pattinson. Pattinson was thrust into the film world by the Harry Potter and Twilight films. He jokes that if he had his way, he would be a nobody in a British dive bar playing guitar and singing for a living. Pattinson is absolutely stunned and surprised by his fame, but not unhappy with it. He has spent his time since the Twilight franchise becoming a fixture in the independent film community. Pattinson is definitely a more artistic type, as is shown in his quite recent photo shoot for Wonderland magazine, in which he pays tribute to Yayoi Kusama, who is arguably the greatest artist alive today. In the photo shoot, Pattinson pays homage to Kusama by wearing gender-ambiguous costumes similar to hers, and posing amongst backgrounds evocative of her art. An artist is truly fearless when they are willing to deny social constructs such as gender, and Pattinson is clearly that brave.

Yayoi Kusama with One of Her Famed Pumpkins
In addition to acting, Good Time is also noteworthy for its locations. The film shies away from the glitzy and famous locations in New York City, instead placing itself amongst bad neighborhoods, mostly in Queens. There have been far too many films exploiting the New York City of tourists, and far too few focusing on the city of everyday people. The Safdie brothers are to be praised for their realism.

Good time defies one specific genre. It is incredibly philosophical, action-packed, and dramatic all at once. It is clear that none of the characters in the film are actually having a Good Time, but this is a very, very good film, and you, the audience, will.


Five out of five stars, or 10 out of 10. Absolutely flawless.

This blog posting is both the personal opinion of Alec Frazier, and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!

Sunday, September 17, 2017

My Mentors, By Alec Frazier and Autistic Reality

This article has been updated as of September 17, 2017.

Hello! Today I would like to talk to you about mentors! Throughout my many business endeavors, I have gained a few mentors. The title of mentor is not something that I give away lightly. Out of my hundreds of professional contacts, I would say that I only have three mentors. They are Mat McCollough, Joyce Bender, Emil Novak, Sr., and Jd Michaels.
Alec Frazier with Mat McCollough at the US ACCESS Board
Mat McCollough was assigned to me as a mentor in 2011 by the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), the nation's largest cross disability rights network. I was serving as an intern through them at the time. Mat was the Executive Director of the Developmental Disabilities Council for the District of Columbia when I met him. He has since become the director of the District of Columbia's Office on Disability Rights. He is also a presidentially appointed member of the US ACCESS Board, the United States government agency which deals with physical access matters mandated by federal legislation. He met with me frequently during my internship, invited me to functions, spent some down time with me, and has met with me since then. When I was in Washington for the 25th anniversary of the ADA, I met with him to discuss an eventual move to the Washington, DC area. He was very forthcoming about tips for gaining employment, for which I am most thankful. Since I have moved to the Washington, DC area, Mat has continued being a professional contact, and also a very dear friend.
Joyce Bender and Alec Frazier at the 25th Anniversary Celebration for the ADA
I met Joyce Bender on the very first day of my internship for the AAPD. She was just about to assume the role of board chair of that organization. I will admit that I did not know much about who she was until part way through the internship. I soon learned that she has done more for disability employment than almost anyone alive today. She runs a temp agency, Bender Consulting, out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has helped develop policies that are now implemented on the federal level, and she frequently meets with delegations from overseas who are hoping to improve their disability employment measures. Joyce has always been willing to provide job recommendations, references, networking, and other opportunities. When I last met Joyce, she gave me a gigantic hug and repeatedly referred to me as "my son". I feel honored to have someone of her stature in my corner, and it is absolutely incredible how close we have become!
Alec Frazier with Emil Novak, Senior at the First Meeting of Visions Comic Art Group
Emil Novak, Sr. is a successful independent businessman in Buffalo, New York. He approaches life with common sense, and always jumps at opportunity. He has been working at the biggest comic book store in town, Queen City Bookstore, since his father founded the business over forty years ago. He is now the owner of the business, which is the oldest bookstore in Erie County, New York. He also runs an independent film studio, two local comic book conventions, and manages Visions Comic Art Group, a local group that makes comic books and coordinates artists and writers. Emil has graciously allowed me to do publicity for him, honing my skills in photography, events management, and social networking. When I came out with a paper that I wanted published, I was told that there was no chance of that happening. Emil came forward and allowed me to get it published. He has also coordinated artwork for this publication, and allowed me to promote it at his conventions. Since moving away from Buffalo, New York, I have remained friends with Emil, while developing a new mentor-mentee relationship in Washington, DC.

Jd Michaels with Alec Frazier
That relationship is with Jd Michaels. In another blog post, I spoke of the benefits of the Lights, Camera, Access 2.0 seminar on disability and media. I have been invited to these seminars, both during the closing days of the Obama administration. At the first one, which actually took place at the White House Complex, I met Jd, who is the Executive Vice President of a large, prominent international advertising firm in New York City called BBDO Worldwide. Although we are not located in the same cities, we frequently meet over Skype. At one point, he proposed some rough deals to me. I later traveled to New York City to meet with him at his offices and discuss details. For one thing, I am being given a job at BBDO Worldwide as an editor. My job is to edit stories from authors in the Deaf and disability community for collection into an anthology. Editing includes work on flow and consistency of content, and monitoring disability-related themes. This job shall last at least one calendar year. In addition, based simply on the fact that Jd believes I am a good person, BBDO will be paying for the production of a book collecting a number of my essays. Amazingly, all profits will be mine. I am stoked! Finally, Jd will be working with me to find conferences and other events where I can be a guest speaker. It is clear to see that Jd Michaels is a terrific friend and mentor!

All of these wonderful people have contributed greatly to my success in my professional life. I thank them tremendously for all of the help and patience they have given me in helping to contribute to my professional growth. I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to Mat McCollough, Joyce Bender, Emil Novak, Sr., and Jd Michaels!

This blog posting is both the personal opinion of Alec Frazier, and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Disability Pride Questions and Answers: An Interview of Alec Frazier and Autistic Reality

The questions were provided by disability rights advocate Kings Floyd. 
With the main character’s wheelchair from the movie Avatar.
  • Name: Alexander Fuld Frazier. Call me Alec.
  • Age: 31
  • Pronouns: He/Him/His
  • Disability (if comfortable sharing): autism, ADD, ADHD, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, sensory processing disorder, digital atonia, dysgraphia, facial atonia, HHT, born without hip joints which were later grown, possibly also PTSD and dyscalcula
  • How did you learn about your disability? At what age?
I have always known that I was different. I never once thought that I was less because of these differences, although I sometimes felt sad about a lack of inclusion as a child. As soon as I became able to understand, which was around later elementary school and middle school, my parents taught me about my diagnoses, while being careful to impart the knowledge that I am different, and definitely not less. As my diagnosis took place in the early 1990s, I was the first person with a higher functioning autism diagnosis and most of the communities I lived in. As such, my self-identity as an autistic individual predates much of the current autism politicking. For example, I fail to see a reason to choose either identity-first or person-first terminology, and I do not see what the fuss is about between the two options. I believe that we have become overly obsessed with language and terminology, and that it hinders our ability to properly represent ourselves. As such, I also believe that usage of slang can be very healthy. We often talk about fitting in with the rest of the world, and we won’t be able to fit in if we use cold, clinical terminology all the time.
  • How much are you involved in the disability community? When and how did you become involved?
Speaking at the US Capitol.
I am extremely involved in the disability community, although not in the ways in which you may think. I first was involved in advocacy in third grade, when I gave a speech to the Lieutenant Governor of Colorado. In eighth grade, I helped get a state constitutional amendment passed in that state raising funds for special education. In high school, I supported my first political candidate. In 2011, I was an intern for the American Association of People with Disabilities. It was there that I learned more about the national disability community. Since then, I have been involved in a great many ways, including but not limited to peer advocacy, public speaking, writing and selling my book, lobbying, attending conferences, and a great deal of other activities. I have spoken to schools and independent living networks, I have worked with parents, educators, politicians, and individuals with disabilities. I believe that every single voice has a right to be heard, although the voice of those with disabilities ourselves is most important. I tend to shy away from both extremes in the disability rights movement. For example, I shy away from Autism Speaks because they tend to believe that those without disabilities should not have self-determination. On the other hand, I tend to shy away from the Autistic Self Advocacy Network because they are disability supremacists who believe in segregating themselves from the rest of society and bullying anyone who does not fit their myopic worldview. I believe in the work of the Autism Society, and of course the work of my own firm, Autistic Reality.
  • Do you have a sense of disability pride? Why or why not?
My hand above the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990,
I definitely have a sense of disability pride. However, I do not believe in disability supremacy. I very involved in advocacy, but not activism. For the definitions of those two words, I use them as defined by the Google dictionary. An advocate is someone who campaigns for various causes. An activist is a protester, a demonstrator, a zealot. These are Google’s words, not mine. I believe strongly in negotiation and peaceful means to end oppression. Although I see a valuable role to staging protests and demonstrations, I prefer not to do it myself. I believe that the best way to manifest my disability pride is to live a productive, happy life whether or not I have a disability. Disability should not get in the way of living such a life. For the past approximately five years, I have been an incredible optimist. As someone with bipolar disorder, I used to get quite unhappy, and often. Then one day, I made a decision not to get depressed or seriously sad or angry anymore. The amazing thing is that it worked! I have not been depressed or seriously sad or angry in five years.
  • What other identities are you proud of? Do they intersect?
Fan Art of the second Daredevil, Tim Urich, who I review in my book.
I am proud to be disabled, and I am also proud to be a homosexual individual. Just as I attend disability pride events, I also sometimes attend gay pride events, although I find that they can be bogged down by showboating, rather than identity pride. For example, the pride celebrations in Buffalo, New York are more oriented towards causing a scene then fighting for equality. The ones in Washington, DC are awesome, though. In addition, I have many less life-altering identities. For example, I am a fan of James Cameron’s Avatar, Twilight, Star Trek, comic books, and an aficionado of architecture, history, governmental theory, and many other disciplines. These have intersected into disability pride in many ways. For example, as a fan of James Cameron’s avatar, I have lobbied the producers in person for disability inclusion in future films, and talked with them about disability and other identities in the arts. As a fan of Twilight, I have served as a consultant on the number of fan works, some of which have become original works and been published as books. I have also written some disability fanfiction myself. As a fan of comic books, I have written and copyrighted a literature review of a Marvel comics character who happens to be the first autistic superhero. The book is called Without Fear: The First Autistic Superhero, and I have sold it and spoken on it at several venues. I have also spoken with a few executives at Marvel comics, and am working on hopefully writing or consulting on a comic for them.
  • What does disability pride mean to you?
With Friends before the Women’s March
Disability pride means living your life to the best of your ability with proper accommodations and services to the point that you can be empowered, content, independent, and happy on a day-to-day basis. To me, any kind of pride involves living life in this way regardless or perhaps because of the identity in question. As far as I’m concerned, one does not need to march, protest, or raise any kind of ruckus to be proud. One must live their life with dignity, satisfaction, and fulfillment. I take this definition of pride very seriously. It comes from my grandfather, Arthur Jacob Fuld, who was a Holocaust survivor and liberator. He believed that the best way to both commemorate fallen populations and be proud of your life was productive acts and a satisfying life.
  • Are there any images/quotes that represent pride or disability pride to you?
There are several images that represent disability pride to me. One of them is some fan art of the autistic comic book character I cover in my literature review. Another one is a photo of me standing with the wheelchair used for the main character in James Cameron’s avatar. Another one is a photo of me speaking in front of the US Capitol building. Another one is me with a group of friends before the Women’s March earlier this year. Another image is my hand with the original Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. These images are spread throughout this blog post.
  • Are there any disabled role models you look up to?
With Andy Imperato.
I have had many role models and mentors. Mathew McCullough, Director of the District of Columbia’s Office on Disability, has been a mentor since I met him during my 2011 AAPD internship. I consult with him often about my future, and while he provides advice, I also tell him of what I am doing. In addition, he is an amazing friend. Somewhat more professional is my relationship with Joyce Bender, CEO and Founder of Bender Consulting, whom I also met during my 2011 internship. She is immensely successful professionally, and provides professional advice. I have also developed a friendly relationship with Andy Imperato, who has held many roles in the disability community over the years. I often bounce ideas off him, and ask him for his advice on disability-related matters. I appreciate these folks because they are moderates in the disability rights field, just like me. There are others I have looked up to, of course, but not to the extent that I look up to these folks. In addition, I have done some mentoring of my own in recent years. Due to my tendency to work with parents as well as individuals with disabilities, there are many parents of those with disabilities who also look to me for guidance. It is an absolute honor and a privilege to be a source of guidance for anyone, and it is a trust that I will never abuse.
  • Anything else you’d like to add or questions I should ask?

I have done an It Gets Better video that is aimed towards anyone with social awkwardness, in addition to the autistic and LGBTQ populations. In it, I briefly tell my uplifting story, and provide tips that I believe anyone can use to make better friends.
As mentioned, I am the Director of a firm called Autistic Reality.
You can find my firm’s website at www.nothingaboutuswithoutus.net
You can find my firm’s Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/autisticreality
You can find my book’s Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/withoutfearautism
You can find my Flickr page at which I post both business and fun photos at www.flickr.com/photos/autisticreality/collections
You can find my LinkedIn page at www.linkedin.com/in/autisticreality/
You can find my blog, Always Intrepid, in which I discuss both fun and disability related items at www.ithacan-alwaysintrepid.blogspot.com/
You can find my YouTube channel, in which I post fun videos and professional videos at www.youtube.com/channel/UCFOHKZumtHlK81Iqjf3B2lA
This blog posting is the personal opinion of Alec Frazier and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Autism Can Make You a Better Artist: A Review of Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors, by Alec Frazier and Autistic Reality

Alec Frazier in The Obliteration Room. Every surface is covered in polkadots, including his nose.
Recently, I had the extreme pleasure of seeing the exhibit Infinity Mirrors, by Yayoi Kusama at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Yayoi was born in Matsumoto, Nagano, Japan. She is 88 years old. At the time, Japan was still a very buttoned-down imperialist society. Etiquette and honor governed society to the extreme. Yayoi entered into this world on March 22, 1929. Her childhood was traumatic. Her father was incredibly lecherous, and Yayoi’s mother used her to spy on his affairs, including multiple sexual acts.

During her life, Yayoi has engaged in a great deal of outlandish work. At the height of 1960s counterculture, she composed a great number of performance pieces called Happenings. A great deal of them involved public nudity. One of them in the early 1970s was a highly illegal gay wedding en masse. She also at one point ran a gay bar as an art installation. At one point, she offered to have vigorous sexual intercourse with United States President Richard Nixon if he would end the Vietnam conflict. Yayoi’s disciples have included many individuals who have been influential in their own right, such as Andy Warhol and Yoko Ono.

Since she was a child, Yayoi has had vivid hallucinations which have reflected themselves in her art. She is also documented as having a number of other mental health issues, including but not limited to obsessive-compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, and a number of other conditions. Due to these conditions, Yayoi voluntarily checked herself into a psychiatric hospital in the late 1970s. She has been a self-admitted guest of that facility ever since. It is practically an open secret that Yayoi has autism. Her moods, social tendencies, and other diagnoses lend incredible credence to this fact. This blog shall attempt to highlight Yayoi’s autistic dependence on order and her obsessions in her artwork as seen in her infinity rooms in Infinity Mirrors.

Yayoi has gone out of her way to make the entire exhibit disability accessible. She realizes that her infinity rooms are not accessible to some with mobility impairments, so she has worked with the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Gallery to provide complete 360° virtual reality tours of all spaces in the exhibit.

Violet Obsession

1994
The first large-scale artwork we encountered was a dark, black room. In one end was a rowboat made out of phallic shapes, all in violet. The black walls, floor, and ceiling were covered with a pattern depicting this artwork. When one has autism, they often feel alone adrift in a sea of humanity, which they often feel passes them by. Yayoi grew up as a girl in Imperial Japan, which was absolutely stifling by today’s standards. She is an extreme feminist, and those burgeoning feelings would have made her feel even more alone at the time. As a girl and as a feminist, the phalluses and multiple pieces of her artwork represent the forest of masculinity she perceived to surround her. This boat travels through dark and dangerous waters, searching for a safe port of call. This artwork was made in 1994, at which time Yayoi was already an older woman. This signifies the fact that people may feel uncertain or lost at any time in their life. Yayoi once said, “If it weren’t for the art, I would have killed myself long ago.”

Phalli’s Field
1965/2016
Stuffed cotton, board, and mirrors
Collection of the artist
Completed in 1965 when the artist was 36 and re-rendered in 2016, Phalli’s Field is the original infinity room. The 1960s were a great time of sexual awakening, and Yayoi, always in the spirit to provoke, envisioned an endless field of phalluses, made from stuffed cotton and reflected in board covered with mirrors. The phalluses are white, covered in red polka dots, which the artist has always adored. The need to provoke or cause a scene is often felt by autistic individuals. It often serves to give us a feeling of legitimacy in society which we may otherwise lack. If it can be done in a novel and risqué form, then even better. The artist would often pose in this room, as if riding a sea of male genitalia. Yayoi certainly knew how to harness the sexual energy and thoughts of her artwork, as well as society’s perceptions of sexuality.
Love Forever
1966/1994
Wood, mirrors, metal, and lightbulbs
Collection of Ota Fine Arts, Tokyo/Singapore
This particular room, Love Forever, has been rendered in metal and lightbulbs reflected in mirrors on wood. It was first completed the year after Phalli’s Field, 1966, and re-rendered in 1994. The reflected light bulbs and metallic patterns form geometric shapes that constantly change color and pattern, endlessly radiating, aggregating, blinking, and spreading throughout the infinity room. One would think that an autistic person with a sensory disorder would find this room alarming and jarring. On the contrary, it is actually quite calming. Autistic individuals often find comfort in dim, soothing lights and geometric patterns. Yayoi is not a psychologist, but as an artist, she realizes which forms will please people. It is my firm suspicion that she worked on this room with a particular amount of personal satisfaction, as it most likely helped calm her always temperamental moods.

The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away
2013
Wood, metal, mirrors, plastic, acrylic, rubber, and LED lighting system
Collection of the artist; The Broad Art Foundation, Los Angeles
A rather recent addition to the infinity rooms is The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away, made in 2013. As usual, the mirrors are mounted on wood with metal details. From the ceiling hang endless ropes of colored LED lighting strands made of plastic, acrylic, and rubber. While all small, the lights vary in intensity and are of many different colors including white light, blue light, red light, and even green light. Just like Love Forever, the effect is immediately calming. However, instead of being pulsing and rhythmic, the effect is serene and wonderful. It gives the feeling of traveling in a jungle of magical plants and creatures. This infinity room provides great calm to me as an autistic individual, and the effect on other autistic individuals would be the same. The lights sometimes dim, and sometimes go dark altogether before lighting up again. The patterns in which they dim are at random, but the effect is still completely pleasing. Once again, one may suspect that Yayoi used personal experience to achieve the calming, therapeutic qualities of this room.
Giant, deep pink spherical balloons polkadotted in black.

The interior of the largest spherical polkadotted balloon.

Mirrored spheres and polka dots in the peep-in mirror dome.

Yayoi Kusama in a longer, light purple wig, ruffled red shirt with black polka dots, and black smock, singing to the audience.
 Love Transformed into Dots
2007, installed 2017
Vinyl balloons, balloon dome with mirror room, peep-in mirror dome, and video projection
Courtesy Victoria Miro, London

The largest display in Infinity Mirrors is Love Transformed into Dots. Yayoi, who has a lifelong love of polkadots, conceived of this detailed exhibit in 2007. It was finally installed in the Hirshhorn in 2017. It consists of a large room filled with deep pink vinyl balloons covered in black polka dots. Inside the biggest balloon is an infinity room lined as usual with mirrors on the walls, floor, and ceiling, and filled with spherical lanterns, also in deep pink with black polka dots. There is a peep-in infinity space inside a round kiosk that is made to look like another polkadot balloon. Inside this peep-in mirror dome is a dreamlike scene of mirrored spheres and polkadots all placed in front of a miniature infinity room made out of mirrors. The entire display inside the mirror dome is tinted deep pink by the light that glows within. Yayoi has stated that, to her, polkadots have always been incredibly calming and happy. It has been theorized that her love of polkadots originates from light reflecting off of the pebbles in the stream in her parents’ garden. For autistic individuals, many patterns can prove soothing. The perfectly round nature of polkadots, and the random playfulness with which they are dispersed, gives a feeling of peace to the mind. A deep, calming pink, rather than a bright, hot pink also serves to ease one’s mood. As an unequaled artist, Yayoi realizes the therapeutic qualities of her polkadots, and a projection of her seems to float in midair near the entrance to this installation, in which she sings a calming song to the crowd that passes by. There is no way that Yayoi does not know the psychological effects of her artwork, and the presence of this video proves it.
Aftermath of Obliteration of Eternity
2009
Wood, mirror, plastic, acrylic, LEDs, and aluminum
Collection of the artist

The infinity room Aftermath of Obliteration of Eternity once again has mirror covered wood with aluminum fastenings. It is somewhat recent, having been conceived of in 2009. It is filled with hanging lanterns made of plastic and acrylic and filled with LED lights. These lanterns give the room the feeling of being filled with floating candles much akin to fireflies. Much like The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away, the lanterns randomly dim and go out, and also like The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away, the overall effect is quite calming. It leaves you a serene feeling of peace in what might be a chaotic world. It is easy to have much reflection in the brief time spent in this room. Yayoi has had a great deal of chaos in her life, and she wishes to impart the gifts of peace and well-being.
All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins
2016
Wood, mirrors, plastic, acrylic, and LEDs
Collection of the artist
Yayoi has a great love of pumpkins. When she was a child, her family was well-to-do, and owned a plant nursery and seed farm. She finds the round shape and often large size of pumpkins to be happy and joyful. In this recent infinity room conceived in 2016, pumpkins are made of plastic and acrylic and filled with LED lights against the usual mirrors covering the wooden space. Each pumpkin glows orange with rows of black polka dots. The title, All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins, signifies the never-ending love Yayoi has for these gourds. Naturally, the field of pumpkins which have brought her such joy appears to be endless, a bountiful harvest for one’s positive emotions. Yayoi is fond of pointing out that her art is born of her obsessions, which are clinical. When one has obsessions, it is a very good idea to turn them into something useful. For example, I have an obsession with taking photos of things I see as noteworthy. I have used this obsession to further my career, and even to make this blog post. Yayoi wants to share her delightfully joyful pumpkins with the world.
The Obliteration Room
The exhibit ends with The Obliteration Room, a fully furnished room completely in white covered with polkadots. Yayoi has taken us on a grand journey. Her journey starts out unsure and perilous, and surrounded by dangerous elements of society such as toxic masculinity. Through this journey, she asserts herself, and engages in self-therapy by art. She finds means of bringing order to her life and calming herself, as well as making herself happy, and shares them with us as art installations. It is only fitting, then, that in this last installation, she asks us to share in the joy with her. The exhibition opened on February 23. It closes on May 14. By the time I saw the exhibition on April 24, it was mostly over. By that time, an endless sea of visitors had completely covered this once white room in simply wonderful, fun polkadots. I proudly covered it, and myself, in even more dots. In almost 90 years, this artist has seen the emotional condition of the world. She has had an endless journey trying to stay happy. As I, Alec Frazier realized about six years ago, so has she: happiness lies in our unique insanity. Be proud of who you are. Be proud of the world you belong to. Live life. Have fun. Enjoy!

This blog posting is the personal opinion of Alec Frazier and the professional policy of his advocacy firm, Autistic Reality. If you oppose it, please screen grab it! We are very proud of this opinion!