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Archive for November, 2007

Should parents of children with autism get preferential parking?

Friday, November 30th, 2007

From the Asbury (NJ) Park Press:

Pro (editorial): Autistic warrant parking placard

Con (letter to the editor): Parent placards not necessary

In the fine print:

New Jersey has the highest autism rate in the nation: one out of every 94 children. It’s even more prevalent among boys – one in every 60.

Column: ‘Memo to those who thought the autism-vaccine debate was over:

Friday, November 30th, 2007

… You Lost.’

By David Kirby, on the Huffington Post.

Among his reasons: Some leading advocates of the vaccine-autism connection have been named to a federal panel charged with setting research priorities into the cause and treatment of autism.

Kirby is the author of Evidence of Harm: Mercury in Vaccines and the Autism Epidemic.

Teen with autism hits a high note

Friday, November 30th, 2007

From Newsday, a feature about musical performer Brittany Maier, who has autism, a vision impairment and a brain impairment. Brittany can play hundreds of songs on the piano, and has two albums out as well as several original songs. Her mother says she is a savant.

Program serves college-age students with disabilities in Denver

Friday, November 30th, 2007

From the Denver Post, a feature on College Living Experience. The for-profit program is helping 47 Denver area students with autism and attention deficit learn how to go to college. See earlier stories about this program’s operations in Chicago and the Washington, D.C. area. All told, the company claims to serve some 7,800 students in 16 states.

Book reviews: ‘An Uncertain Inheritance’

Friday, November 30th, 2007

From Vanity Fair: The essays in An Uncertain Inheritance: Writers on Care for Family” (William Morrow, 304 pages, $24.95), edited by Nell Casey with a foreword by Frank McCourt, are

“revelatory glimpses into the everyday agonies and occasional flashes of rapture caregivers experience.”

Melanie Lauwers, writing in the Cape Cod Times, says this collection of short stories and essays

… may help comfort you or inform you or simply let you see some aspect of your own life and be able to remark, “That’s so true.”

(more…)

TV movie review: ‘Hollis Woods’

Friday, November 30th, 2007

By Dorothy Rabinowitz in the Wall Street Journal:

Sometimes a drama of the most predictable kind — the sort found, say, on television screens during the holiday season — breaks through formulaic constraints to become something better and bigger. Something, indeed, close to irresistible. That can happen when the actors wield charms that vanquish all consciousness of formula and predictability — and, it hardly needs saying, when a well polished script comes wrapped around a killer theme. Both conditions are clearly at work in “Pictures of Hollis Woods,” a Hallmark Hall of Fame film (Sunday, 9-11 p.m. EST on CBS) about a young girl who has made her way through a series of foster homes in search of a family.

(more…)

Movie reviews: ‘Diving Bell and the Butterfly’ gets raves

Friday, November 30th, 2007

Artist Julian Schnabel creates a film from the memoir of French fashion editor Jean-Dominique Bauby, who was paralyzed by a rare condition called locked-in syndrome that left him only the use of his left eye. Mathieu Amalric stars. The film won the best director prize at Cannes.

Critics can’t say enough good things about it, and the Oscar buzz has started. Many reviews listed at Rottentomatoes.com.

Here’s a sample:

‘Diving Bell and the Butterfly is vivid, inspiring’ — Joe Morgenstern in the Wall Street Journal. (There’s also a first-person sidebar: A movie stokes my memories, by Joshua Prager.)

Jan Stuart in Newsday: “The visual lyricism and irascible humor of Julian Schnabel’s screen adaptation make for a life-against-the-odds drama like none you’ve ever seen.”

A.O. Scott in the New York Times:

… a movie about deprivation becomes a celebration of the richness of experience, and a remarkably rich experience in its own right. In his memoir Mr. Bauby performed a heroic feat of alchemy, turning horror into wisdom, and Mr. Schnabel, following his example and paying tribute to his accomplishment, has turned pity into joy.

Among leading reviewers, Rotten Tomatoes reports, the film has gotten a 100 percent positive rating so far. It goes into limited release today.

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More than 50 million people in the United States have disabilities, a number that is growing rapidly as the population ages. Experts say disability will soon affect the lives of most Americans. This website attempts to aggregate news and commentary about disability, and to document the efforts of people who are seeking new ways to address familiar challenges.

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