Is Barron Trump autistic? A Reddit user claims to have video evidence of Donald and Melania’s son’s supposed autism, although the “evidence” presented in the video is anecdotal and based on little more than speculation. Further, the “evidence” appears to be an old video that has largely been debunked — or, at least, forgotten about.
The idea that Barron Trump has autism first started gaining traction in late November of 2016, when, according to Snopes, Rosie O’Donnel, herself no fan of Donald Trump, speculated on Twitter that the soon-to-be first son is autistic. In a tweet that has since been deleted, Rosie posted a link to a YouTube video — which has also since been deleted — that purported to have evidence that Barron is autistic.
That accusation did not sit well with Melania Trump, who threatened to sue the maker of the video, according to this Inquisitr report.
Melania Trump — Threatens Suit Over False Barron ‘Autism’ Video… And Says Rosie O’Donnell Made it Worse https://t.co/PaZxM3UTIS
— TMZ (@TMZ) November 28, 2016
Rosie, for her part, insisted that she only shared the video to “raise awareness” about autism, a claim that Melania’s lawyer, Charles J. Harder, rejected.
“The video allegedly seeks to ‘stop the bullying’ of Barron Trump. Not true… The video did instigate further bullying by Rosie O’Donnell and others.”
Now it appears that the old rumor that Barron Trump is autistic, and that there’s “video evidence” to back it up, is back again, thanks to Reddit user tbkantor08. In a Reddit thread dated December 31, the user in question posted a link to a YouTube video supposedly proving that Barron has autism. It’s the very same video that Rosie O’Donnel posted, only posted by a different YouTube user. I will post a link to it here, but it may very well be taken down by the time you read this.
As is the case with Rosie O’Donnel’s original tweet, the YouTube user who produced the video claims that he/she did so to “raise awareness” about autism.
So, does this video supposedly offering evidence of Barron Trump’s autism, and which is being recycled by a Reddit user, actually prove that Barron Trump is autistic? Well, here are a few points.
- Whether or not Barron Trump is autistic is nobody’s business but his, his parents’, and his doctors’. It is most definitely not the business of random Reddit users, YouTube users, or the general public. He’s a child, and he deserves his privacy.
- I am not a pediatrician, psychologist, neurologist, or in any other profession qualified to diagnose autism, nor are the vast majority of the people reading this article. Further, anyone who is qualified to make that diagnosis most certainly isn’t able to do so based on a YouTube video. Diagnosing autism requires clinical observation and study and can’t be done based on a seven-minute online video.
- By taking a handful of video clips out of context, I can “prove” just about anything about anybody. Give me enough videos of Donald Trump with his eyes closed, or of him tripping or bumping into things, and I can slap them together in a YouTube video and “prove” that Donald Trump is blind.
Also, and this can’t be stressed enough, most of the available video clips of Barron Trump were taken during Trump’s campaign and/or from the night of the election. So put yourself in Barron’s place on the night of the election. It was a school night, so he’d probably been in bed and asleep long before it became clear his dad had been elected president. Then, at 3 in the morning, he’s pulled out of bed, dressed in his Sunday best, put on stage, and told to act happy. Any 10-year-old put into that position is going to act a little off.
In other words, the Reddit user who claims to have evidence of Barron Trump’s autism actually only has evidence of a sleepy and confused kid who would rather be anywhere else.
[Featured Image by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images]