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ASERT has compiled resources for those with autism and those who care for people with autism relating to the current COVID-19 outbreak.
Most people love to watch TV shows or movies. It’s media we can easily sink our teeth
into and even binge-watch shows, thanks to streaming services like Netflix and Hulu.
Diversity in media has come a long way and “tokenism” (having a single character
from a minority background) is less uncommon. We have Black, Asian, LGBTQ, and
even Autistic characters. The media even has a front lining shows bringing these
aspects of everyday people living their lives. Sometimes though, I wish
characterization was a bit more subtle. It’s not about hiding aspects of people but
allowing them to interact naturally with those around them, displaying their true
selves without compromise or feeling stifled.
I’ve been watching a show recently called “Chicago Med.” You might be familiar with
this genre with shows like “ER”, “Grey’s Anatomy” etc. There’s an entire Chicago
series with Chicago Fire and Chicago PD being interlinked shows with plotlines
spanning throughout each program. So far I’ve just been watching “Chicago Med” but
it’s been pretty great with showcasing aspects of minorities that are uncommon.
The first example is April Sexton and Maggie Lockwood two Black women that are
nurses. Friendship is a core component here, any disagreements between the two are
quickly resolved within the same episode and there are no “pitting Black women
against each other” within that friendship. It’s nice to see.
Next, you have the character Dr. Ethan Choi, a Japanese American and former
Lieutenant Commander of the USNR. As a character, he’s very pragmatic and assertive
and you’re able to see traits that are more robust than some shows that will cast
Japanese Americans into a role and typecast them.
Finally, there is Dr. Latham, who is Black, an Orthodox Jew, on the autism spectrum,
and a brilliant surgeon. What I like most about this character is that he encompasses
aspects of Black culture that aren’t talked about in the mainstream, especially ASD in
the Black community. He gives a glimpse into working professionals who are autistic
at the top of their field.
I’m not sure if I would find any media to be perfect, Chicago Med does have its faults
but overall with the 4 seasons that I’ve watched, I’m really happy seeing media
continue to grow and diversify. If you looking for a med drama, Chicago Med is one I