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A tribute to Harpo Marx

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Published on Jul 29, 2007

Harpo Marx remains the most widely-known silent comedian. Able to say more with a few quick gestures than morons like Chris Rock can say in a half-hour speech, Harpo almost never spoke on film. One thing that keeps me awake at night with some frequency is the question of what great artists or thinkers of years gone by would think of the world we live in now. Considering the manner in which children on the autistic spectrum are being treated, my guess is that Harpo, and probably his brothers too, would not think much of us.

Users of the "You don't know what it is like to be the parent of an autistic child" defence, listen to this quote from a recent chat that says it all: "I tell them that Harpo Marx didn't either, but he knew what it was like to be set apart from the rest of a society, abused without actual cause, and marked for total destruction by a powerful entity, so I submit he knew more about what it was like to be an autistic child than any autistic child's parents ever will". Is that enough of a spoonfeeding for you to get the conclusion?

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