In last night’s monologue on Saturday Night Live, Elon Musk claimed he has Asperger’s. I figured it out when his monotone speech patterns first came out and then he admitted that he has Asperger’s. Sorry to tell you this, Elon Musk, but you do not represent the Aspergeric community. Yes, Mr. Musk does make atypical associations that are typical of people with that condition. Like me, he likes giving unusual names, such as the super awkward names he gave to his children. He is someone who thinks differently. He sees some aspects of the world not the same way most neurotypicals do. However, he does not have the sensitivities. Most people on the autism spectrum have strong sensitivities and aversions to certain things- noise, smells, etc. Musk appears to exhibit none of these. I regularly got kicked out of schools and other places for my behavior due to my sensitivities and often had to go to special education, an experience shared my many on the autism spectrum. I do not see any of these things about Elon Musk.
On the contrary, Musk has me worried. Some of the things he is proposing or working on will have a detrimental effect on some on the autism spectrum. As I explained when I started this blog, I am electrosensitive. I am highly sensitive to certain electronics, especially wireless devices that emit radiation. Not all people on the spectrum have that sensitivity. Many of them spend long hours on their screens or headphones to tune out the world around them. However, because the neurodivergent brain works differently, people on the spectrum are more likely to be electrosensitive than the typical person. The satellites Musk is sending into space and the infrastructure he is trying to build will saturate the planet with electromagnetic radiation and make it more difficult to escape to more remote areas to avoid this radiation. Also, most of us on the spectrum do not really like changes. I am not talking about solar cars or the renewable energy musk is trying to build. These are all good changes that will do a lot of good for the environment without changing our lives significantly. What I am concerned about is some of the things he is rumored to be planning (though I am not sure how true the rumors are), such as implanting microchips into people’s brains. That will have a devastating effect on the fundamentals of humanity, and as a person with Asperger’s who is not too fond of major changes, I would not want to live in a world where a person’s humanity is altered.
Do not think that because the wealthiest person in the world has Asperger’s it means people with this condition have made it or that Asperger’s is not a significant disability. There are still many with Asperger’s who are struggling to make a living because people will not accept them or make the right accommodations for them. Musk also appeared to be exaggerating some of his symptoms on last night’s monologue. I am not saying he does not have Asperger’s. He probably has a very mild case and does not significantly exhibit all the symptoms associated with the condition. If he had all these symptoms, he would not be anywhere near as successful as he is.