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Lab tests conducted in the 1990s showed that he and his two sisters had levels of lead in their blood nearly double that of what the state of Maryland defines as the minimum for lead poisoning.
Left unabated, lead in the bloodstream also causes a worsening of reaction time, memory, and retention of new information. A growing body has shown that childhood lead poisoning, in tandem with disparities in access to social and medical services, has widened the achievement gap. One particular study found that once blood-lead level was taken into consideration, race became less of a factor in academic achievement.
Some children are at greater risk for lead poisoning than others. A HuffPost analysis of available lead poisoning data for U.S. cities found a correlation between cities with high percentages of African-American residents and elevated lead poisoning rates.
"This is a disease that primarily impacts African-Americans," Chachère said. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children of color whose families are poor and who live in housing built before 1950 have the highest lead poisoning risk.
It seems crazy, but the evidence about lead is stacking up. Behind crimes that have destroyed so many lives, is there a much greater crime?
Common metal previously discovered to cause brain damage and a disposition toward violence.
The University of Washington released a study earlier this month concluding that being the mother of a child with autism is more stressful than being the mother of a child with other kinds of developmental disabilities. One reader’s first reaction to this news was “I could have told you that,” because her son, who is five, has Asperger’s syndrome, and his condition rules much of her life. Then she read the report, and became angry. Its description of life with a child who has autism was sanitized and simplified, she thought. In part that’s because the words that exist in the English language fall short in evoking what she calls “the nightmare.” She understands that severity of symptoms, like autism itself, is a spectrum, and that her experience will not be identical to everyone’s... her experience, she says — of days punctuated by the rages of her child — is certainly common to many, and rarely reflected in the sanitized descriptions she too regularly reads.
A few weeks ago, Michael pulled a knife and threatened to kill me and then himself after I asked him to return his overdue library books. His 7 and 9 year old siblings knew the safety plan—they ran to the car and locked the doors before I even asked them to. I managed to get the knife from Michael, then methodically collected all the sharp objects in the house into a single Tupperware container that now travels with me. Through it all, he continued to scream insults at me and threaten to kill or hurt me.
He can literally go from calm to a complete meltdown like the flick of a switch. He will scream and scream and scream, throw things, break things, if you try to stop him doing something when hes having a tantrum, by holding him, hugging him etc he will literally hit and kick you till you are black and blue and on a few occasions has bitten me till hes broken the skin.... Whats also scary is that now at the age of 4years old my son can nearly over-power me, his strength for his age is unbelievable, especially when he gets himself worked up, hes like this now to me and his dad, whats he going to be like in 10 years time when hes 14. I am literally at my wits end of what i can do to try and curb these violent temper tantrums...
I fear for the safety of my one-year-old daughter, who he has already hit once before (and I got blamed for that incident). There are no resources for people in my position. I've tried doing research online about the link between autism and violence, and how to deal with it. Everything I've found is useless. Some of the articles sugar-coat the problem by coming out with statistics about how violence is only present in 3% of autistics. Well, that's fantastic for the other 97%, but what am I supposed to do the next time I get head-butted in the chest because I won't let him run out of my apartment before everyone else is ready to go? The rest of the articles I've found are terrifying, like the story of Trudy Steurnagel, who was beaten to death by her autistic son.
For years I thought of his autism as beautiful and mysterious. But when he turned unspeakably violent, I had to question everything I knew.... But in the months before turning 18, Andrew grew depressed and bitter. Huge and hairy — a young man who grows a beard by twilight — he suddenly became as withdrawn as he’d been at 4.... Once during this phase, he beat me. A neighbor heard me screaming and called 911. But I blamed this on the drugs.
As he grew older, Colin's outbursts were becoming more common and more violent. And they were usually directed at his mother.
"He was such an imposing figure," Teresa, 42, said. When Colin was at school, there was respite for Teresa, but it was temporary. "The bus delivered him to the front door every day. He would come home, and I would be petrified." Some days he would run into the home, drop his book bag and start hitting her.
"Living with Colin was like living with an abusive spouse," Teresa said. "You never knew what was going to set him off."
Although autism presents significant challenges for anyone who suffers from the condition (and their families), it appears that African-American children, as well as other children of color, are among those who are most severely affected.... The CDC asserts that while many children receive the diagnosis around four years of age, researchers have found that African-American children are often diagnosed 18 to 24 months later.
most of the research in genetics concerning autism has focused only on Caucasian children. It is actually a rarity to find a study in which African-American children are included. The research that does not focus on African-American children may also demonstrate results that don’t apply to children of color. This, of course, has a profound impact on autism diagnosis and services for minority children. If scientists don’t fully understand the nuances that impact children of color, it is difficult for these professionals to provide clear treatment options and proper diagnoses.
The issue resonates not only with parents but with police. Every year, the International Association of Chiefs of Police picks one major issue to address at a national summit. In 2010, it was improving police response to people with mental illness and such conditions as autism.
"It has been a huge and significant part of our conversation in the last couple of years," said John Firman, director of research for the organization.
A Brown University teacher Marie Myung-Ok Lee , author of Somebody’s Daughter, documented her autistic son’s response to using Marinol, a synthetic cannabis which is produced by the drug company AbbVie. She switched to an edible form of cannabis and then a tea version. Her son went from self-harming behavior like banging his head to being able to ride a bike. She calls her experiment a qualified success.
More recently, Kalel Santiago, a child with autism so severe he wasn’t able to speak, started speaking his first words after simply spraying hemp oil in his mouth twice daily according to Dr. Giovanni Martinez, a clinical psychologist in Puerto Rico.... Dr. Martinez noted that when Kalel couldn’t communicate, his behavior became bad as he acted out due to his frustrations, but by opening up his communication abilities his conduct has improved
It is not hard to see where the fault lies, but people do not want to call the baby ugly when it is.
originally posted by: Boadicea
You did not even have enough time to read everything I posted, much less check out the links I provided, before responding. If you don't want to know, okay. But your comment says far more about you than anyone or anything else.
I did but I'm saying there is a reason why all this is happening today.
Why do kids eat lead paint and why do medical conditions go unnoticed and untreated, why do kids raise kids, why is home life so bad that gang life looks so much better.
Once again...Most of this comes down to failure at the family level and horrible social norms for the area...
Hard to fix that outside of totally removing these kids from that environment at an early age, but how do you do that?
originally posted by: IridiumFlareMadness
a reply to: Boadicea
This supports my theory that the inner city and "thug life" culture is founded in mental retardation.
I knew it had to do with defects of some sort.
originally posted by: theyknowwhoyouare
Though I think you may be onto something (as a contributing factor), I know first hand that most inner city violence revolves around crack, gang influence (those people in the neighborhood with respect[fear], money, and power), and the media.
originally posted by: Edumakated
Correlation does not equal causation.
If lead poisoning were the cause, then why don't we see similar levels of white on white violence in the same areas?
Here in Chicago, the housing stock is very similar - old with lead even in affluent areas. Heck, I live in area where starter homes can cost upwards of $500k for old turn of the century bungalows. Guess what, they have traces of lead paint in them. Yet, we don't have the same levels of violence.
I am not arguing that lead poisoning is not a problem, but I am doubtful that it is really related to overall community violence.
The bigger issue is the complete dysfunction brought on by single hood rats having kids with no fathers in sight. The nearly 75% out of wedlock birth rate is the real issue imho.
originally posted by: chrismarco
a reply to: Boadicea
I would love to see the data on these children that grow up in these homes ten years out...
originally posted by: Boadicea
So did I... things like lead-poisoning and autism are the reason all this is happening today.
Because they and their parents are mentally/intellectually impaired and cannot do better because they don't know how to do better. Why do those of us who can do better and who should know better not fix what needs to be fixed?
No, it comes down to a failure at the political and medical level and horrible community response for the area.
Removing the child from the environment is one way; removing the paint from the environment is another way. Both by forcing property owners to have the paint removed, and by educating parents to the dangers of these paint chips so they can keep them cleaned up. Another way is to delay the MMR vaccine until well after their 3rd birthday (as Dr. Thompson and others recommend), and/or to perhaps divide the viruses into their own vaccines given separately. Implementation of a program for early diagnosis and treatment would also help. I'm sure there are other and better ways as well.