“Life unworthy of life”

2020.09.23, by Ansel

Bodycam footage of the cops who shot that autistic kid in Salt Lake City have just been released. Mother called 911 and knew her kid was afraid of cops. “He sees the badge and automatically thinks like, you are going to kill him, or, he has to defend himself in some way. He freaks out.”

Salt Lake County has crisis teams you can call to come out. 1-800-273-8255. Their hotline is open 24 hours.

I should be more upset that the cops shot a kid almost a dozen times, but as an autistic man in America who has not been comatose for the past five years, I’m more mad at the mom than at the cops. Cops don’t deal well with mental health crises. They shoot autistics, their caregivers, suicidal people whose friends and family called asking for a welfare check. At this point calling the cops for a mental health crisis and not expecting them to shoot the unlucky bastard is like calling a bear to inspect your beehive and expecting it not to fuck up your apiculture set-up. I’m autistic. We’ve had to live with this for years, years of having to suppress our stimming in public and suffer from our sensory processing disorders lest mall security take us for shoplifters or druggies, or the TSA take us for a flight risk. Calling the cops on an autistic is like calling the cops on a goddamn black man. It’s 2020. It’s almost 2021. Where the fuck has that woman been?

The fact that the kid was afraid of being shot by police is just everyday reality for working class autistics and minorities, and I don’t think his mother respected that.

Yeah, she didn’t want cops. I know. Then she should have called Crisis. Not 911. She’s his goddamned mother. It’s her responsibility to know better.

I had to worry about Ant and Giovanni every time they were low on spoons from autistic burnout, about whether some goddamn allistic nosy shrew would spot them walking outside and stimming, and call the cops on them. Ant had to deal with half a dozen heavily armed SWAT members and they weren’t even called for her. Men with Colt M4 carbines, packing some real heat, desert sand palette. After that, every time she heard footsteps outside, she’d flashback to the cops.

“He has sensory disorders… I can’t live like this, honestly.”

God, I hate allistics.

She’s had nightmares about cops the whole week in Colorado, and on our last night she saw four police cars, one police van, and one fire truck pull in for a single drunk guy. She recorded the whole thing. She was afraid he was going to be shot.