Asperger’s Syndrome and the Criminal Law: The Special Case of Child Pornography


Mahoney Mark J – Asperger’s Syndrome and the Criminal Law 2009


For years parents of children with Asperger’s Syndrome (AS) struggle and
sacrifice in the simple hope that their child can lead a “normal” life – get an education,
have a satisfying career, and raise a family. The child has such hopes, too. Finding
the right schools, curriculum, and therapists, and struggling constantly to teach the
child the social conventions and interpersonal skills which neurotypical youth learn on
their own, is an exhausting and expensive venture. Mostly parents and their child fear
that the symptoms typical of this condition will present a barrier to social acceptance
and meaningful adult relationships. They also fear that the child’s social naivete will
lead to the child’s victimization or the child being lured into dangerous situations. At
worst, these parents suppose the individual’s obliviousness to social mores may result
in misinterpretation of their behavior as offensive or criminal.

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