Joe Scarborough’s reaction to criticism from autism advocates about his statement on James Holmes’ shoot-out in Aurora, Colorado last week may been prompted by an autism diagnosis was quick. The commentary was made on Monday’s edition of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”, and Scarborough issued a clarification the next day.
I don’t know.
You Never Get A Second Chance to Make a First Impression, Joe Scarborough
I don’t get MSNBC. I’ve never watched “Morning Joe”, and until yesterday I wouldn’t have known Joe Scarborough if I’d fallen over him.
So what are my impressions now?
I remember thinking when I first viewed the video of Joe Scarborough’s now-infamous “autism commentary” that he was rambling toward the end. It felt to me like he’d lost his focus. I heard him talking about the challenges of raising a child with Asperger’s Syndrome and thought, “He’s close to burning out. It’s hard for him to talk about this.” It felt to me, after listening to the video several times, that there was a point where he stopped talking about James Holmes and Aurora and started talking about the stress of supporting a family member who just doesn’t fit into society very well.
But take a look at these sentences: “Most of it has to do with mental health; you have these people that are somewhere, I believe, on the autism scale. I don’t know if that’s the case here, but it happens more often than not.” I don’t know how to read this any other way than:
- Scarborough believes that the type of socially-disconnected individuals that conduct mass-shootings are more often than not somewhere on the autism scale (there’s no evidence to suggest this.)
- Scarborough’s point in bringing all this up is that he believes that James Holmes could possibly be on the autism spectrum.
Bottom Line for Joe Scarborough
You’ve clarified. Now apologize. You’ve got nothing to lose and it really is the right thing to do.