Under the headline, "Neurodiversity editorial: Do we have to accept sociopaths?":
The author suggests using the crossed out devil logo above to signify your intolerance for sociopaths. I know I don't even have to say it, but it might as well be:
Yay for neurodiversity. History-making artists, scientists, politicians -- were any neurotypical? Probably not. But then who is? Up with neurodiversity.
Yet, I’m a huge hypocrite: I just can’t get with the whole sociopaths-are-just-another-neuro-diverse-population gig.
On the one hand, it’s true: sociopathy is organic. Just like kidney stones. On the whole, kidney stones are seen an illness; a little free will with diet, but, in general, involuntary. Same with sociopathy. Some contextual free-will, but not much. I know that. Predators are predators, sociopaths are sociopaths, that’s what they do.
Contrast autistic spectrum disorders. I’m totally ok with that neurodiversity. Both autistic spectrum and sociopaths lack “empathy” (although there are profound other differences, which I won’t go into here). Why am do I grade these two organic conditions differently, having neurotolerance for autistic spectrum, and no tolerance whatsoever for sociopaths?
Fear. I’m fearful because wild-type sociopaths roaming free in society are capable of huge swaths of destruction, and I can’t tell who they are. They look so lifelike. It’s context. I understand the ecological niche for rattlesnakes. But NIMBY. If sociopaths were culled from the herd, and put somewhere where they couldn’t do any harm, I’d be much more benevolent. I know this is inconsistent. But is it wrong?
If society tested first graders, and herded off the proto-sociopaths into a special needs class, I’d feel sympathy. “Oh, look,” I might say as older vo-tech school sociopaths get off the bus with guidance counselors at Broad and Wall to work the bond trading desk, “how sweet. ” And I’d probably feel good and righteous, and probably tell other people, “I saw the sociopath school bus today. They were all wearing their “Do Not Approach- I’m A Sociopath” badge, and not one put up a fuss. What a great thing for them.”