Diagnosed rates of autism around the world have increased a lot over the last decade and a half but there is ongoing debate about whether there are actually more cases or if it is instead a cultural phenomenon, namely that we’re getting better at detecting the disorder and more willing to label kids as having it. Some also contend that the increase in autism is due to whatever they happen not to like; vaccines, GMOs, etc.
How can you know? To prove that diagnoses have gotten better, rather than there being a true increase in autism, you’d have to know what would have happened to today’s kids 20 years ago. Would they have been diagnosed with autism? Or ADD? Nothing?
Well, there is a way to tell where more diagnoses of lots of things will happen, and here in California we knew it anecdotally for years. If you want to find a hotbed of anti-vaccine sentiment and anti-GMO sentiment and pro-astrology belief, take a protractor and draw a 10 mile radius around a Whole Foods. Prior to the autism epidemic we saw some teachers in California classrooms who had 30% ADD students. Why? The teachers believed the children had ADD and parents took them to a doctor for it.
To read the full story by Hank Campbell, click here.