Scott Pelley used his important and influential position as anchor of the CBS Evening News to perpetuate a damaging and false link between the Connecticut school massacre and Autism. In an irresponsible and emotionally manipulative interview with family friends of Nancy Lanza, Pelley deliberately injected Asperger's Syndrome into the discussion and left his audience woefully uninformed about the nature, characteristics and tendencies of the condition.
“We don’t know whether autism played a role in the shootings,” Pelley intoned to his audience, all the while drawing out of his guests the fact that Lanza had Asperger's:
“Did Nancy Lanza ever tell you specifically what her son’s medical condition was? And did she put a name to it?”
“Asperger’s,” family friend Mark Tambascio answered.
“That’s what she said,” Pelley confirmed, “That it was Asperger’s syndrome.”
“Absolutely,” Tambascio replied. “There’s no question.”
“And for her, it was a full time job taking care of him,” Pelley offered.
“Absolutely,” Tambascio replied. “Oh my goodness, yes.”
Let's be clear, according to everything we currently know about this case, and about Asperger's/Autism in general, the fact that Lanza was diagnosed with Asperger's is about as relevant as the fact that he had brown hair. In fact, it would be more relevant to ask about the fact that Lanza was raised by a single mother and was estranged from his father and older brother.
Crime statistics show that the breakdown of traditional families and the lack of strong, positive male role models are very real contributors to violent crime in America, but Pelley didn't go there. Why? Because it is politically incorrect to suggest that the increase in violent crime is somehow linked to the lack of fathers in the home.
“We don’t know whether autism played a role in the shootings..."
Stop Scott, you had us at "We don't know."