But It's Not About Tigers

  1. A tiger doesn't belong in the community, but people do!

I am aware of tigers. I even know a little bit about them. I know they’re part of the cat family. I know that tigers have stripes. I know that they probably don’t have a preferred cereal. And I think they might be endangered. So, I’m aware of tigers.

The problem with tigers is that they’re dangerous. I would be rather upset if a tiger moved in next to me, or even down the street, or even in the same town. Tigers belong in cages, not in people’s homes. They belong in zoos, not out in the community. I honestly believe that I shouldn’t have to deal with tigers if I don’t want to and I certainly shouldn’t have to be taxed so the government can pay someone else to deal with them.

And this is all well and good. I’m comfortable with my prejudice against tigers. I know there are people out there who care about tigers. They try to keep them from being endangered. They try to keep them in the wild. And I know they’re probably right, but it’s really not my concern. Somebody cares, so I feel like I don’t have to. I’m fine with that.

But what if this post wasn’t about tigers?

What if this post was about people?

This post could be about “black people” or “red people” or “brown people” or “yellow people” or even “white people.” This post could be about “Mexican people” or “Middle Eastern people” or “Russian people.” This post could be about “Jewish people” or “Muslim people” or “Christian people” or “science people.”

This post could also be about autistic people or people with autism.

So, let me ask you: Is awareness enough?

About the Author

Stephanie Allen Crist

Stephanie Allen Crist is a writer, advocate, and marketer. Stephanie’s first two books, Discovering Autism / Discovering Neurodiversity: A Memoir and First Steps: Understanding Autism, are available now.

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