• Fri, Nov 17 2006

Judith Regan on OJ Simpson’s “emotional autism”

In explaining “why I did it”—why she published OJ Simpson’s book If I Did It—publisher Judith Regan notes that I Did Not Pay OJ in the November 16th Drudge Report. She details her own experience as young woman in an abusive relationship and proclaims that “I made the decision to publish this book, and to sit face to face with the killer, because I wanted him, and the men who broke my heart and your hearts, to tell the truth, to confess their sins, to do penance and to amend their lives.”

In describing books she has previously published, Regan refers to the many on “the subject of sociopaths and their lack of empathy (Without Conscience and Snakes in Suits), and then speculates about OJ Simpson having a “sort of emotional autism”:

Is such behavior the result of a genetic flaw? Could it be caused by a head injury? Is it the result of a weak and damaged human will? Was this man suffering from a sort of emotional autism?

How did it happen? How could a man with so much have so little? And how could we, as a society, continue to protect him and others from the consequences of his wrong-doing?

While Regan refers to “emotional autism,” I find her associating autism and sociopaths, and violent crime, troubling and ill-informed.

As for the mention of autism in regard to OJ Simpson, this was simply unnecessary.

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  • Susan Lord

    “While Regan refers to “emotional autism,” I find her associating autism and sociopaths, and violent crime, troubling and ill-informed.

    As for the mention of autism in regard to OJ Simpson, this was simply unnecessary.”

    I’ve noticed “autism” is being used as a sort of ‘buzz word’ by people who know very little, or nothing about this condition.

    I hope her book sales plummet, and her flippant and extremely offensive comment on a serious subject she obviously has no “empathy” with, comes back to haunt her for the rest of her career.

  • http://momnos.blogspot.com mom-nos

    Unnecessary, and profoundly offensive.

  • http://http:/whitterer-autism.blogspot.com mcewen

    I hope it’s an indication that the words ‘autistic /autism’ are becoming more socially acceptable. Or is that a little too optimistic? But there again, in this context, it’s not an association I’d want to promote.
    Best wishes

  • melanie

    “emotional autism” makes no sense…..?????????

  • http://www.what-a-world.com phil

    Judith Regan, shame on you. If you really felt this way, why didnt you say that all your proceeds would go to a domestic violence charity.

    Hmmmmm so the truth is, it was greed and publicity, sick sick you are sick!

    shame – boycott anything judith regan including harpers ect.

    and check out http://www.dontpayoj.com

    judith – you are now as bad as OJ – enjoy your enternity in hell together.


  • Susan Lord

    I think the term “emotional autism” was used to imply a lack of emotion in autistics. Hence her association of autism and sociopaths.

    Phil said;

    “shame – boycott anything judith regan including harpers ect.”

    I second that!

  • David Nolan

    I have just encountered the term: emotional autism and it has enabled me to understand some of my own behaviour, which has been a distressing puzzle all of my adult life. I am known to be intelligent and a good communicator, patient, caring and empathetic. Unfortunately some situations and some behavior, by particular people, seem to act as ‘triggers’ which have caused me to have immature ‘tantrums’ ['I throw all of toys out of the pram']. This seemed to be out of my control until now [hopefully I now have an insight into my own thoughts and behavior which will enable me to manage my thoughts and actions better than before]. I have previously sought help from three different counsellors non of whom seemed able to help me to understand myself. I now believe that emotional autism could be used to describe the behaviour of some people who experience developmental problems due to traumatic events in early life.
    I can’t comment upon the behaviour of O.J. Simpson but I can now recognize something in my own behaviour. I will not attempt to describe this behaviour here but would welcome comments from other, concerned people who may wish to exchange experiences or discuss this further. David, based in South Devon, U.K.

  • http://www.nicholaskrishnan.com Shari Krishnan

    I always find it much more helpful to have others describe something as it really demonstrates itself, versus using jargon.

    To my family, autism means something. It is very personal to us. It has a sweet young face and loving heart behind that term and that diagnosis. My son is not emotionless. He is not void of empathy.

    To throw the term “autism” around so casually is indeed hurtful. To describe O.J. Simpson’s behavior in that manner made me want to throw-up.