A girl with mild cerebral palsy at my school wrote a summary of an article of her choosing, as was our homework. She chose an article about how stem cells may one day the key to curing cerebral palsy. This has stuck in my mind since. If someone had a life-altering disability, would they choose to cure it?

Hicky, I'm going to use you as an example. You were born with Fetal Alcohol Effect, which severely affects physical and mental growth, social skills and overall brain functioning. Would you cure it, or do you think it's important to live with your mother's mistake of drinking while you were in utero?

There are a ton of movements out on the internet and elsewhere pushing for the cure of autism. I'm sure you've seen the ads - I saw a Cure Autism Now sticker on a gumball machine a couple years ago, and it's not uncommon to see the "Cure Autism Now" ribbons on the back of people's cars. While pacing my computer room, I began to question the ethics of curing such a disorder

70% of autistics have an IQ below 70. 50% are essentially either nonverbal or have limited speech. A good portion of their parents want to cure them of autism. When I think about it critically, it's quite selfish of the parents. While they mean well by just trying to give their child a normal life, by advocating for a cure, they are rejecting who their child is. The child has autism, and autism is a part of them. It doesn't define them, necessarily, but it is a part of the child. To "cure" that part of the child is to destroy part of what makes the child the way he or she is. Who said that autism was a 'bad thing' that needed to be 'cured' in the first place?

A lot of people have this idea that other people need to be "fixed" or "cured" of a problem. For instance, there always seems to be wrong with kids, or at least adults seem to think so. Jimmy is hyperactive because of his personality, and the adults don't like handling Jimmy because of his hyperactivity. Rather than accepting that Jimmy is just a rambunctious child, his teachers or parents may want to medicate him to calm him down.

I think situations like the one I described are really horrible. Parents and teachers, in my opinion, are getting lazier. Rather than working with kids like Jimmy to effectively deal with his hyperactivity, they take the easy way out and just dope him up with some medication he probably doesn't need. But honestly, why does every child -- or person, for that matter -- have to have some problem that needs to be corrected? They say 28% of people in China need professional counseling. Well, shoot, maybe it's NORMAL to be stressed. You're depressed? I'm pretty sure depression is a normal human emotion. Just because you're not happy 24/7 doesn't mean you need medication. Everyone and their uncle are on antidepressants these days. Everyone's depressed, apparently. Antidepressants and stimulants seem to be the new legal drug these days. Not feeling happy? Pop in a pill, because you obviously have a problem a pill can correct.

But getting back to the main point, why does everyone think people who are "different" need to be cured? I have some issues that make me come off as being quirky, but I don't want to be "cured" of it, because those "issues" that society wants to correct are what makes me me. Just like autism is an integral part of an autistic's personality, curing the "problem" in essence sabotages the individual.

At least that's my take on it. Your views?