When I tell someone I have a child with High Functioning Autism, every fifth person will say "Have you read Jenny McCarthy's book"? Or, worse yet, "Jenny McCarthy cured her kid with a Gluten free all organic diet."
I write this today because of an article someone forwarded me yesterday.
You don't need to read it. Autism Awareness "hero" Jenny McCarthy will pose nude in Playboy to benefit autism research.
Here's why we don't claim Jenny McCarthy. I am all for using celebrity to further the cause of autism awareness. I got no problem with using sexuality to gain said celebrity status. However.. having silicon implants does not make you an organic chemist. Jenny McCarthy admits herself that her son probably never had autism but rather Landau-Kleffner syndrome. In her defense, the symptoms present similarly and Autism is a spectrum disorder. There are many children with other "diseases" or "syndromes" that additionally fall under Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Celebrities often use their celebrity to further causes, expecting us to believe their cause is just and fair because they are a celebrity, damnit! I'll pick on both sides of the political spectrum... Think Alec Baldwin, Martin Sheen, Rob Reiner, Ted Nugent, Hank Williams, Jr., and Rush Limbaugh. ENTERTAINERS! Neither doctors, nor research scientists, and certainly not politicians.
I don't doubt Jenny McCarthy loves her child and wants to do everything possible for him. That's admirable. But, please stop spreading lies and misinformation in the name of awareness. Some of us actually deal with this every day and can't stand being asked if we read your book (as an aside, she actually has 5 published books on Autism).
Please continue to use your body for our cause... but hire a PR guy for your interviews.
An interview with Time Magazine. Worth reading if you skipped the other links and just trusted me. By the way, Jenny, "shadow" refers to the aides that "shadow" the children in the classroom, not the children themselves. Get it? Shadow as a verb, rather than a noun? Of course you didn't... but that didn't stop you from yapping about all you've done.
This all sounds like I hate Jenny McCarthy... I honestly don't. I actually think she is a pretty funny writer (Belly Laughs is a pretty funny book). I think she is a beautiful woman. I think she cares deeply about her son. However, Jenny McCarthy is to autism what Gloria Allred is to law. Been out of the spotlight a little too long?
Here are some equally beautiful women that use their brains to further the cause.
Please note that my wife would not let me post her picture...
Both beautiful, talented women with a child on the spectrum.
Maybe I should relax and claim her being in Playboy is a great thing if she actually does donate the money to autism research. Nobody reads the articles anyway, right?