What is all over the news lately in our province of Ontario is a letter written anonymously by a neighbour to the grandmother of a 13 yr old boy with autism.
In case you can not read from the image I have provided, here are a few excerpts.
*The number, but not the frequency, of exclamation and question marks used in the letter has been approximated in this post. It reads:
I also live in this neighbourhood and have a problem!!!! You have a kid that is mentally handicapped and you consciously decided that it would be a good idea to live in a close proximity neighgbourhood like this???? You selfishly put your kid outside everyday and let him be a nothing but a nuisance and a problem to everyone else with that noise polluting whaling he constantly makes!!! That noise he makes when he is outside is DREADFUL!!!!!!!!!! It scares the hell out of my normal children!!!!!!!!!
The letter goes on to state:
Crying babies, music and even barking dogs are normal sounds in a residential neighbourhood!!!!! He is NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!
He is a nuisance to everyone and will always be that way!!!!!! Who the hell is going to care for him????????? No employer will hire him, no normal girl is going to marry/love him and you are not going to live forever!!
T]hey should take whatever non retarded body parts he possesses and donate it to science. What the hell else good is he to anyone!!!!
You had a retarded kid, deal with it… properly!!!!! What right do you have to do this to hard working people!!!!!!!!!
I HATE people like you who believe, just because you have a special needs kid, you are entitled to special treatment!!! GOD!!!!
Go live in a tralier in the woods or something with your wild animal kid!!! Nobody wants you living here and they don’t have the guts to tell you!!!!!
Do the right thing and move or euthanize him!!! Either way, we are ALL better off!!!
This letter has been circulated all over the social media sites and the public outcry is unanimous that this letter was disturbing to say the least. Many are calling for hate crime charges to be laid while others are ready to call out a lynch mob asking for her name to be published.
So what have I to say about this? I think every mother let alone any mother of children with autism shed a tear or two for the mother who received this. That hurts. Words do hurt despite the “Sticks and Stones” mantra. My boys are just like that 13 yr old out in his yard, so I felt the hate towards my boys too. But once you get past that initial hurt you get angry but then even that doesn’t last too long before you think of the person writing this and what is going on with them to be so nasty to someone they don’t even know. And now I think this very angry mother is likely one very ashamed mother and is probably hiding for her life so I do feel a bit sorry for her. She no doubt is getting a slew of Autism Awareness and is waking up to the very real challenges that our children face every minute of every day.
This letter was very hateful but I wouldn’t say that I thought she was a threat to this boy. In fact, I would consider her more of a threat to her own children.
Thankfully this boy will never see this letter or hear the words from this woman and in fact will only feel the effect of a neighbourhood and nation for that matter, rallying around him. The neighbourhood where this letter was received came out to support the boy and were giving high fives and cheering him on.
This reminds me of Joseph who was sold by his brother’s into slavery and in prison for many years. His famous words to his brothers when reunited with them are “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good…” Gen. 50:20
It is unfortunate but people are capable of some pretty terrible stuff. We all are affected in one way or another by thoughtlessness, selfishness, carelessness, greed, pride, neglect, anger and the list goes on either by someone else or even by our own hand. And we hear the cry “why is there so much suffering?”
When God created the world and the first people, He said that it was good and it was…until the very first sin. Call it greed or pride but it was not of God. That is when the suffering began for the human race. The consequence of sin is the separation from the only thing good we could ever have – God. “Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.” James 1:17
And so the condition of man and women from then on was less than perfect. Always falling short of that perfection that God commands. But yet God still wanted to have a relationship with us, to take care of us and to love us as His children. So He made a way to make us acceptable despite the issue of our sin that separates us from Him.
That way is through His Son who was perfect and therefore became the perfect sacrifice, paying the price of our sins Himself. Crucifixion that was intended to cause harm and kill the Lord, but God intended it all for good. One act on the cross – Sins paid – separated from God no more. But only for those who accept the Lord’s sacrifice as payment for their sins. “…God will also count us as righteous if we believe in him, the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God.” Romans 4:24&25