Thursday, February 28, 2008

Louder Than Words

Jenny McCarthy, actress, author of "Baby Laughs" and "Belly Laughs" and girlfriend to funny man Jim Carrey can add one more title to her life resume. Activist. And a darned good one at that. Unfortunately, it took her son spending time in the ER, and McCarthy spending time in autism bootcamp to understand autism and develope a heartfelt sympathy for others in the same situation. In her book, McCarthy is opaque and human, and that is what readers love to read. Her hard edge is used to her advantage as we understand why she curses the paramedic. We understand why she screams inside to know what the problem is and why she cries and screams in her front yard once she does know.

More than sympathy, though, McCarthy is fed up with the lack of knowledge regarding autism. It is her opinion her son developed it following vaccinations, but she does not curse vaccinations in general. Instead, she advises a delayed schedule of vaccinations. And beyond that, she completely and with depth, investigates ALL of the causes of autism, choosing not to finger point and blame, but instead to shed light on the subject.

My children don't have autism. But I still related to her as a mom and woman. I understand autism better than ever thanks to her candidness. I hope to God I never face what she and millions of others have. But if I do, I now know what to do. And that's because McCarthy blazed the trail.

Her writing is interesting, compelling and motivating. And for those that have autistic children, she's done a ton of homework for you. The book is a memoir, a textbook, an autism bible. Get the book. With autism rates as high as 1 in 150 children (with a rate of 1 in 70 in boys) chances are if you haven't personally encountered an autistic child, you will.