A recent NY Times article, “On Autism's Cause, It's Parents vs. Research" (6/25/05, sorry just first 50 words), has stirred up a lot of anger among the parents of autistic children who are also homeopathy supporters. My take on the piece is that hopeful and desperate (when did desperate become such a horrible moniker) parents, like myself, of children on the spectrum are bombarded with advice (often from MDs and PhDs) like:
Stop drinking fluoridated tap water.
Place your child in an infrared light-powered sauna.
Don't vaccinate: mercury in vaccines is neuro-toxic and measles in the MMR shot causes an immuno-neurological response.
Bathe your child in metal-chelating magnetic clays.
Eat only organic food.
Give your child expensive oral, topical or intravenous chelation therapy.
Stop consuming dairy products.
Feed your child concentrated algae.
Shine green light on your child.
Feed your child drops of RNA.
Give your child antifungals to kill yeast in their digestive tract.
Where does science end and the snake oil begin?
From what I have seen, a graduate degree guarantees neither sound ethics nor dedication to altruistic public service. And currently, the only thing certain about the roots of autism is that confusion abounds. It's too bad that some people have the "insight" to take advantage of this situation. Depressing. -BC