July 23rd, 2008
05:50 PM ET

The reality of autism

Watch Michael Savage on Larry King Live
Watch Michael Savage on Larry King Live

Editor’s note: Dr. Charles Sophy is responding to recent comments by radio talk show host Michael Savage. Savage said this about autism: “Now the illness du jour is autism. You know what autism is? I'll tell you what autism is in 99 percent of the cases. It's a brat who hasn't been told to cut the act out.” WATCH SAVAGE ON LARRY KING LIVE

Dr. Charles Sophy
Medical Director, Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services
(the nation's largest foster care operation)

Uneducated opinions such as Mr. Savage's are truly reprehensible. There is NOTHING fraudulent about Autism! It is a real medical condition. It is like saying there's no such thing as a broken leg.
It's not that there are necessarily more autistic people in the world now, but parents and medical experts in the U.S. today are more aware of and more apt to explore "unusual" behaviors or developmental delays in babies and toddlers.

Moreover, there is no medicine for autism. So overmedicating or over prescribing for autism is not a possibility. FULL POST

Filed under: 360° Radar • Autism • Dr. Charles Sophy • Medical News • T1
April 3rd, 2008
10:10 AM ET

Third grade plot on teacher: How we fix this

When I learned about the third grade students in Georgia who plotted to attack their teacher, my heart broke. FULL STORY  Essentially, three systems put in place for our kids—parental, educational, mental health–have not yielded an outcome of which anyone of us can be proud.   And let me be very clear, this is not about blame.  This is about raising awareness of our children and working as a team so that communities wrap around each and every child so they may have a positive outcome.  These are the systems in which  I believe awareness needs to be strengthened:

The parenting system.  I would hope that parents of any child know and connect with the teachers and leaders of the school their child attends.  It is their business as parents to know what their kids are up to.  In this situation, we are talking about 8- to 10- year-olds, not independent teenagers who even legally have been given freedom.  So I stress to parents everywhere:  Know yourself, know your child.  Parenting begins with you.


Filed under: Dr. Charles Sophy