Mark Rober’s Autism Fundraiser is Anti-Autism. Here’s why.
Disclaimer: Due to the nature of the sensory triggering content of Robers original video, and the fear of causing a sensory overload for the author, this article is more based on posts from Autistic influencers/activists.
Four days ago, Mark Rober released a video titled “The Truth About my Son”. The 10-minute video discussed why Rober does not show his son in his videos. Rober goes into the details about how his son is Autistic and how his family is passionate about such.
As well-intentioned as this video is, it is harmful in so many ways. Rober starts the video by saying his son has “Special Needs”, this language is often harmful when it comes to discussing Autistic people as it tends to put a worse image on Autistic people. He then goes into how when people come up to him they ask what he is really good at. Implying that he may have some sort of superpower. (This sentiment can also be positive but in the context of this video it is harmful based on my opinion and others.) All things Rober is speaking on and uplifting. Rober also goes into listing all the things his son may miss out on in life because he is Autistic. Finally, Rober plays a clip of what causes a sensory overload, making this video unviewable for many Autistic subscribers.
The video itself is very problematic, but the problems continue with the charity Rober supports on the video. “NEXT for Autism” is a charity similar to “Autism Speaks” in that they believe that Autism is “Curable” through therapies like ABA therapy and they think autism can be prevented using things like “Eugenics”A. Chole(Princess Aspian) says in her new video responding to this project, that NEXT for Autism is basically Autism Speaks just under a different name. Rober has raised over $840,000 for this harmful organization at the time of writing.
Rober does not stop here. On April 30th, he is hosting an event called “Color the Spectrum”, a large fundraiser for this Anti-Autism organization. Rober will be joined by talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, Andy Samberg, Adam Sandler, Casey Neistat, Chris Rock, Conan o’brien, Miranda Sings, iJustine, Jack Black, Jacksepticeye, John Oliver, Jon Stewart, Karl JacobsB, Marques Brownlee, Maya Rudolph, Mark Hamill, Merrell Twins, MrBeast, Paul Rudd, Rhett & Link, Sarah Silverman, Stephen Colbert, Terry Crews, Vsauce, Zach Galifianakis, and Zach King. These personalities are helping to raise money for a harmful charity. Karl Jacobs, along with Jackepticeye and a few others have dropped out saying they would not participate unless the charity is changed.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP. The main thing you can do is spread the word and DO NOT DONATE TO THIS ORGANIZATION. If you can, also reach out to as many of these creators as possible urging them to not take part unless the organization is changed to one approved by Autistic voices. You can sign the petition, which already has over 10,000 signatures here: http://chng.it/hpgQCX9V7h This is sickening and horrifying. I am lucky as a verbal high functioning Autistic person that I can live without fear of shock therapy and other types of harmful therapy towards Autistic individuals but not everyone is that lucky. I urge you to do your part to stop this dangerous event.
APRIL 24TH EDIT: There have been many reports of Rober out right deleting comments on youtube and instagram made by autistic people. Meaning he has seen these and knows but does not seem to care.
A) Eugenics is the process of selectively breeding with a partner, to try and make specific traits/genes(in this case Autism) go "Extinct".
B) Jacobs has reportedly said that he would not participate unless the organization was changed, a few other creators, as of today have dropped out aswell.
Sources: Robers Video(Not linked as to not give it any more attention/cause sensory overload for Autistic readers)
@ellaellaw on TikTok (https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMe9Ao3AE/)
@princessaspian on TikTok and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/p/CN1nvHoLGZY/?utm_source=ig_web_copy_link)
"Autistic Reaction to Mark Rober" (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-D7zy6vq10)