This is the cover of Us Weekly from a few years ago.
The first thing I noticed about this image was the diction used in order to describe autism. The words “saved” “beating autism” and “recovered” are three of the critical words we learned to stray from when describing the progress of the disorder. Modern science has not found a “cure” for autism, so the word carries a negative and surreal connotation–which is unhealthy for the autism community. By viewing images like these, parents may come into the wrong mindset–and rather than loving and accepting their child with autism, they will continue to see it as something wrong with them and look for a cure as Jenny McCarthy did.
The second thing I noticed in the image was the use of Jenny McCarthy as a spokesperson. After taking this class and doing research on her claims with autism, the image of her frustrates me. She has created and perpetuated a counterproductive argument in the autism fight by insisting that vaccines cause autism.
If I were to view this article cover before this class, I might have even looked up to her. Knowing nothing about autism, I might have thought that this woman was some kind of miracle worker who found the cure, finally, for autism. After taking the class, I know what a detriment she has become, and I hope to spread that message so that these images do not create more of a negative impact than they already have.