I knew you were going to open it. You little rebel, you. I like you. Autistics are rebels by nature, hence the blog Raising Rebel Souls (site currently unavailable). Being real is an act of rebellion in a world that profits from being fake. To also elaborate on a previous mention of the enlarged justice gland in autistics, this is a trait that when channelled properly, can be make tremendous strides in society. Many of us have found a good fit in the justice system, activism, and the arts.
Rebelling is okay so long is it's for the greater good, doesn't harm anyone, or break the law. Whistleblowers may not agree with that last one but it's a grey area I would never step into. I'm an advocate, not a social justice martyr. It's also wise not to attack or throw anyone under the bus. No matter how wrong someone is, it's human nature to bark back when attacked. Nonviolent resistance is my philosophy. People are so used to quarrels that they don't know how to respond to those who kill them with kindness. There's a reason Martin Luther King Jr was more effective than Malcolm X. I'm not comparing their significance, only their methods. As much as we're hurting, retaliating will never solve anything.
A new "fad label" for rebellion is ODD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder. Like personality disorders and autism, I believe it's also a spectrum. Children who defy authority are labeled as such. My issue with this is that it assumes that the authority is correct. A lifetime of being mistreated by authority figures yet being obedient towards them doesn't make me any less defiant, it's a way of thinking. Some autistics are different and will act out against injustices done towards them. It's easier to label a child with having a disorder rather than understanding the reason behind a child's behaviour. Children branded as 'bad' could be dealing with internal struggles you can't even imagine. For the record, I've never been diagnosed with ODD but I recognize a lot of the frustrations in the traits. I do have a defiant perspective but doesn't make me deviant. Not all non-conforming behaviour needs a label. Doctors in the past have diagnosed slaves who didn't commit to their tasks well enough as having ‘dysaesthesia aethiopis’. Have we already forgotten that homosexuality used to be in the DSM5? The message that sends out is: if you don't think or do as you're told, there's something wrong with you.
"It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society."
- Jiddu Krishnamurti
The greatest minds of the world went against the grain. No major breakthroughs have happened by people who follow the herd. When it comes to following orders, the world is a jungle and no matter how many rules exist to tame its creatures, many are still captives of nature. The only real difference between people are the varying degrees of emancipation from their lower nature. Life is a constant struggle between survival and virtue. There's a million ways to get ahead, but not everyone is equipped with the tools to do so in a kosher way. Remembering this helps me have compassion for even the most ruthless or abased of us. I have faith in humanity. Whether we're the walking-dead, the walking-sleeping, or the walking-woke, we're all walking in the same direction. Our pace is just different levels of consciousness.
"I have a dream."
I had a dream too. Surviving a nightmare will wake someone up more than dreaming ever will.