I was going to respond to things Savage has been saying on his show. I'm so tempted. I won't do it, though. I refuse to feed the troll. I have actually deleted most of this post twice now, because I have gone off on rants that speak directly to his spin. I refuse to debate him. I refuse to lend him that kind of legitmacy. Yes, he's the famous person and I'm just some guy who is the father of a child with autism, but if I debate his points as he makes them, I am only drawing attention away from the effort to get rid of him. We don't need him around. He's perpetuating myths about autism and casting suspicion on anyone with the diagnosis of autism.
He just doesn't get it.
For those of you out there who don't understand the reasons why my blood boils over this issue, and why others are so outraged, let me try to clarify it for you: when Savage claims that 99 percent of the cases where autism is the diagnosis are fraudulant, he casts suspicion on every single child and parent for whom autism is a reality. So now, when I tell other people that my daughter has autism, people who listen to Savage will doubt it. He is trivializing autism, even as he tells his audience that "real" autism is heartbreaking and devastating. He's making the word meaningless to his listeners. He's turning it into the default, catch-all diagnosis for any behavior in children outside of the norm, and that is where the problem really lies.
What I find most ironic is that while those of us who are trying to get him off the air are doing it the way consumers would in a free market, given that it's the only power we would have in the absence of regulation of commerce, Michael Savage is attempting to cast his derision on Media Matters by having his listeners demand tax returns from the organization--he's using government regulation, which is something he normally despises.
In any case, thanks to people who have responded to the call for an effort to log the advertisements on his show in various markets, the list of Michael Savage's advertisers is now more complete. It is going to take some time to update. I urge you to contact every one of them, and if you receive a response, please post it on your blog, and I will link to it from mine, or send it to me so I can post it here.
By the way, Home Depot and Geico, who have both denied advertising on Savage's show, have had five and four commercials tonight, respectively, on the station in my market.
Please keep up the great work, those of you who are writing to the sponsors and those of you who are sending me advertising logs, and those of you who are spreading the word.