Update: February 2010. Best's blog has been put behind a warning label by Blogger.
November 23, 2013: Edited to add: this is in reference to Kev Leitch shutting down his blog, LeftBrainRightBrain in October 2007, because of threatening behavior by John Best
I received a comment (see below) from a person whose email seems to be fraudulent. I'm posting the comment here, up front. My points are
flush left in roman
and "firstname.lastname@example.org"'s comments are
indented and in italics
Thanks for taking the time to comment. I'll take your points one by one.
I don't understand all the hate towards John Best.
Perhaps you didn't notice that the post you commented on was from 2007. At that time, Mr. Leitch, whose daughter also has autism, was at that time 7 years old, non-verbal, and had several problematic behaviors. In other words, she had "severe autism".
Mr. Best, in the months leading up to the post:
- Appeared at autism conferences using a nametag with Mr. Leitch's daughter's real name
- Encouraged others to mock Mr. Leitch's daughter
- Wrote blog posts purporting to be written by Mr. Leitch's daughter
- Made internet appeals for funds for treatment for Mr. Leitch's daughter, the funds to be sent to Mr. Best's home address.
Sources for the above assertions:
In Mr. Leitch's own words in the fall of 2006
John Best at AWARES
John has developed what seems to be an unhealthy interest in my daughter. I find it incredibly disturbing. More so than I can possibly convey in writing. I don’t give a stuff if he or his crowd insult me personally, I’m a big boy – but time after time he has seen fit to abuse my daughter. Who can forget his charming comparison of my daughter to a trained monkey:
"My wife bought too many bananas so I;ll send some for your daughter"
which came about as a result of me detailing her progress (the crime being of course that she’s progressing without chelation/ALA/megadose vitamins or HBOT).
Well now he’s stooped even lower. This year's AWARES conference is well under way. John has apparently changed his stance from last year where he stated that AWARES was a made up conference solely to trap him (John has a little problem with ego and reality) and decided to attend again this year.
This time though he joined up with the username ‘Megan Leitch’ and made numerous posts abusing autistic members of the conference and pushing chelation as the only cure. When I was made aware of this, I contacted the conference administrator and after satisfying himself that what I was saying was true, he deleted all posts from that user and deleted the account.
What sort of utter coward assumes the identity of a six year old autistic girl? I am in two minds at whether to follow up on this legally. I’m not sure what constitutes identity theft in a legal sense but I intend to find out. But of course this goes far beyond identify theft. To anyone with an ounce of morality, posting in the name of a child to further your own agenda is so tasteless that I don’t think there are adjectives to describe this particular act. Assuming the identity of an autistic child because you don’t like the child’s father or what he has to say is…..disturbing….
In the fall of 2007, Mr. Best upped his attacks on Mr. Leitch, using the voice of Mr. Leitch's daughter. As a consequence of these actions, Mr. Leitch felt he must close down his blog.
Mr. Best's intemperate comments were well-known before the Leitch affair. A father of an autistic child collated some of Mr. Best's more objectionable statements here. I think you might want to read through the sections, here:
The man has a severly autsitic son you heartless thugs.
I'd like to point out that of the folk repudiating Mr. Best's behavior on the blog post above, five have children who are "severely autistic": nonverbal or minimally verbal, some who still struggle with toilet training, some with self-injurious behaviors.
Yet, you hipocrites call him a thug?
Of those five bloggers (and others who blog) who have children severely affected by autism, none have threatened another blogger, or impersonated or mocked other children on their blogs.
Mr. Best's behavior was beyond the bounds of civilized behavior.
He's the one targeted and abused by you all.
No, you are mistaken. No one would pay attention to John Best (or Foresam) if he did not repeatedly show up in blog comments using vile language and threatening others with harm.
Hey, man up or woman up whatever. This is USA, not North Korea folks, if you don't like what he says, defend your position or don't listen to him
I think that is exactly what the bloggers listed in this post in 2007, 2.5 years ago, and have continued to do.
but to go on a campaign to destroy his freedom of speech
How is remonstrating with Mr. Best for his uncivilized, reprehensible behavior a "campaign to destroy his freedom of speech"? No one organized a campaign to have his blog (hate-spewing though it is) shut down.
However, I think you might be referring not to this post from 2007, but the current situation.
Best uses Blogger as his blogging platform. Earlier this week, Blogger briefly shut Best's blog down. It is back up, but now comes with a content warning.
I had nothing to do with Blogger's decision to first shut down, and then re-install with a content warning.
says more about you than I cared to really believe. Now I will spread the word to all other parents of autistic children about how abusive and cowardly you people are for going after John Best.
That is your perfect right. But again, I'd like to point out, if you are going to "spread the word to all other parents of autistic children" -- many of those parents, those who blog and don't agree with Best that chelation is the only way to "recover" children with autism -- are well aware of Best's heinous behavior.
You owe th is man an apology. He's obviously under a lot of stress.
If any apologies are owed, it isn't to Best
People are aggressive when they are under stress and feel hopeless.
Many of the autism parents that Best has verbally assaulted and abused are in the same boat as Best, but somehow they have had the integrity and dignity to refrain from verbal assaults and abuse. Some of Mr. Best's "stress" is self-imposed.
Update: Best's behavior constitutes cyberbullying.
I have an internet friend I've never met in real life, Kevin Leitch. I know he is a real person, through a number of sources. Until this weekend, he wrote the excellent blog Left Brain / Right Brain. He is closing it because a moral midget named John Best is harassing his daughter, who has autism.
The reason LB/RB is shutting is because I cannot continue to allow my beautiful eldest girl to be exposed to the hatred and bullying she is recieving from John Best. John has seen fit to compare my beautiful child to a trained monkey because he didn't like the fact she was progressing. He has made numerous jokes at her expense on that theme. He has assumed her identity online. He has encouraged others to do the same.
John Best also appears as "Fore Sam" in blog comments.
I will miss Kev's commentary and especially his wonderful videos of his daughter.
More expressions of regret from:
- Kristina Chew
- Estee Klar-Wolfond
- Joseph of Natural Variations
- Orac of Respectful Insolence
- The Bronze Blog
- The Voyage
- Living Healthy Centre (UK)
- One Dad's Opinion
- Odd Time Signatures (Karoli's even more irate than I am)
- Club 166's tribute to Kev