Callum Brazzo's Autistic Lincs: The Future IS Gold
Hello everyone, my name is Callum Brazzo and welcome back as I continue making Autistic Lincs.
If you are on the Autistic Lincs Facebook page, you'll know that I was going to expand on my plans for World Autism Awareness Week/Day/Month WHATEVER.
Frankly, a lot of autistic people hate this month because everyone jumps on the bandwagon of 'good will,' 'awareness' and other factors that are rendered superficial in comparison to work that still needs to be done and practices that are ignored.
But there are gems in our county and across the way as far as Portsmouth and Manchester and it is essential to give them their golden spotlight.
I am writing this column at my desk after spending the day (Sunday….) on the 'Walk For Autism' hosted by David Snape, of David Snape Show acclaim.
David is a Bourne autistic man who is really making himself known and carving an autistic-led path for the county with his radio show and it is always a pleasure to have his company.
David's desires to get positive messages about autistic people out in the open are so wonderful and, as an autistic man myself, I really hope that the walk and other ventures continue to evolve and flourish.
Furthermore, there is a coffee morning at Sleaford Town Council on April 2 (World Autism Awareness Day) which is described online as 'A coffee morning to support Autism awareness and acceptance, with Rainbow stars children and adults speaking throughout the day to give you an insight into life on the Autistic spectrum.'
This kind of thing is sorely needed and not only are autistic adults leading themselves but there are allies out there that see the very real benefits of autistic adults having a platform at all!
I will update you on this event after it's happened, obviously, but I will be speaking/performing under the title 'Autistic Lincs, Autistic Led' which are the platforms I utilise to create authentic, productive and collaborative conversations about autistic people but the title also carries undertones of the principles my community lives by and I am so excited!
Lighting It Up Gold is so much better than lighting up blue because the colour blue represents a charity that wants to cure us and think of us as diseased.
This, as I've said many times over I know, is NOT the case but especially around this month, people think they are doing things in the best interests of autistic people but that is NOT the case either.
The ways we can help autistic people are best understood by engaging with autistic people. David Snape, in addition to the Sleaford uprising of gilded glory, are two solid examples of how we can truly engage and make a real difference.
Coming out of Lincolnshire, temporarily, Portsmouth's Spinnaker Tower is a magnificent sight to behold but last year it got even better and the prospects of autistic lives thriving got brighter when it decided to Light It Up Gold in respect of, and in solidarity with the autistic community, so many of whom approve the symbolic colour.
It is then with immense joy that I announce that in the evening of April 2, I will be in Portsmouth to witness, as I did last year, the illumination of Spinnaker Tower alongside many of my autistic allies.
Additionally, whilst the Spinnaker Tower illumination is recurring, Manchester will hold its first ever Autistic Pride event in June!
(June is a month when a lot of autistic pride events/picnics happen so this is very important to note but we will explore that in due course!)
Before April 2 though, we have the first ever open mic night at Sergi's Tapas Bar 7:30pm-10pm on Thursday, March 28, where I will be performing and utilising my platform, and March 29 and on this day, I will peacefully protest once more outside the National Autistic Society Headquarters to honour the victims of the Mendip House Injustice.
In conjunction with the advocacy work that David does and the platform Rainbow Stars utilises exceptionally well, we have to be aware of the aforementioned incompetence, inexcusable and the injustice that is rampant in the roots of my community too.
I don't mean to end on a sour note but there is a balance to strike not only this day, week or month but all-year round and we have to tip that balance in ways that genuinely promote acceptance of autistic people and allow them to just 'be.'
There are carats of gold everywhere and it's up to us, autistic and neurotypical alike, to mine them and never to sell them short of what they are worth.
And autistic people are worth every damn bit because the future….is gold.
Ciao for now!
Further Reading And Events:
Why Talk About Autism?
Open Mic Night at Sergi's Tapas Bar
Autistic Stallholder's Fair
Mendip Injustice Protest:
CEASE therapy banned:
Autistic Lincs Facebook Page:
Read Callum Brazzo every week in the Lincolnshire Free Press.