Mark Blaxill and Dan Olmsted have been on a book tour for their new book, The Age of Autism. In a radio interview they were asked about being attacked, Mr. Blaxill responded:
“We get attack on a regular basis. I think we have become accustomed to that. I think that one things we really need to recover in this debate is a sense of civil discourse”
Mr. Blaxill made a similar call for a more civil discourse about a year ago. This was in regards to a post that was so offensive that the Age of Autism blog had to pull it down. Before it was pulled, Mr. Blaxill defended the piece. Mark Blaxill’s comment? He supported the attack as “edgy”.
The irony is fairly thick. Toadies who do hit jobs in the media?!? What was that blog piece but a hit job in a form of the media?
What is strange is the repeat of the statement that the discourse should be more civil. In that, I agree with Mr. Blaxill’s commentsl. Where we part ways is in the definition of civil discourse. I just don’t think he and his team at the Age of Autism blog have promoted a civil discourse in the last year (or ever).
Dan Olmsted owns/runs the Age of Autism blog. Mark Blaxill is an “editor” blogger there and frequent commenter. They are
Shall we go down the list of the people who have been personally attacked by that blog? Peter Bearman, Tom Insel, Story Landis, Richard Grinker (and his wife), Ari Ne’eman…the list goes on.
These are not “edgy” blog posts. These have included false claims of pharmaceutical ties levied against a blogger combined with an effort by Age of Autism readers to make the blogger lose his day job.
A more civil discourse would be welcomed. Even an edgy discourse would be welcomed. I encourage Mr. Blaxill and Mr. Olmsted to put substance behind the words. Stop the hot pieces. Stop the attacks.