60 Minutes--Sesame Street adding autistic character!

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BTDT
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19 Mar 2017, 6:40 pm

Sesame Street is adding an autistic character and tonight's episode of 60 minutes is covering it. They mentioned that it is a difficult character to add because everyone with autism is different.



cyberdad
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19 Mar 2017, 6:56 pm

My guess is mothers would switch off their TVs if their "little darlings" were exposed to a character with low functioning autism, seizures or schizophrenia (too harsh for toddlers to take in)

It's likely to be more like a child like Ralph Wiggum from the Simpsons who is kind of a moderate (middle of the road) autistic character

Of course they might try for a Sheldon or Lisa Simpson high IQ/OCD type character but that's not really representative either



BTDT
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19 Mar 2017, 8:27 pm

Julia ignored Big Bird as she was too busy to be interrupted.

She was portrayed as creative.

They showed her having a meltdown due to noise from sirens blasting.

Like all characters, they did a lot of research. There is additional material on the 60 minutes web site. And on the Sesame Street web site.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/julia-sesam ... et-autism/
Transcript of an interview



jrjones9933
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20 Mar 2017, 7:51 am

I watched 60 Minutes last night to see this segment. It looked good to me, basically a way to expose kids to autistic tendencies in a safe way. Having seen it on Sesame Street, they will have a higher likelihood of just accepting hand-flapping or bouncing with excitement. They didn't show much of the meltdown part on 60 Minutes, but I anticipate they did alright with it, and again seeing one in a safe space like Sesame Street should help kids just accept it as not a big deal. I feel very positive about this development.


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smudge
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20 Mar 2017, 10:10 am

I felt sad to see it.



BTDT
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20 Mar 2017, 1:39 pm

In the future, I would assume that Julia would be someone who could be a classmate. High functioning enough to be in the classroom with the other kids yet showing obvious characteristics of autism. Their goal is to have other kids accept Julia as just another kid. Different, yes, but just another kid.



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20 Mar 2017, 3:36 pm

I liked it, its nice to see that they are trying to teach kids about autism (would have saved me a lot of grief in school). Its nice that they chose her to be a girl (because its often viewed by others as a malecentric condition). I didnt think i would care but it made me kind of happy to be represented



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20 Mar 2017, 6:57 pm

I'm glad that they added a new character. If they made an old character autistic without much warning, I would've felt like they did it for the sake of money and viewers.


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jrjones9933
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20 Mar 2017, 7:13 pm

It would be so predictable for Sesame Street to just do it for the money, after all. :?


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21 Mar 2017, 8:39 am

The character had sensory sensitivities unusual in most autism portrayals. She ignored big bird trying to talk with her because she was focused on something, I have done this plenty of times. No one character can undo damage from years of only Rain Man/Sheldon or burden portrayals. While there will be steps backwards and far from perfect representation this and The Accountant, Aspergers Are Us and other portrayals and documentaries in the last year offers some hope that we are finally moving forward.

Many more people are going to see Julia and saw The Accountant then will see iheartless.com. Most of the mainstream media is covering Julia because most people saw Sesame Street as kids and their kids did or are watching Sesame Street.


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23 Mar 2017, 5:13 pm

I was so happy to see this. I loved Sesame Street. I wonder if I would have related to her as a child.

They say that parents have been requesting a character like this for years and it took 5 years of research to develop her, so I think she will be portrayed realistically and sensitively. She won't be a Sheldon (although I do love him).


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