Katie Hopkins: 'I'm definitely on the spectrum'

There were some surprising moments during the controversial personality's second appearance on the radio show

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The Independent Online

When Katie Hopkins first took to the LBC airwaves last month, her appearance was met with protests and petitions signed by thousands.

Just days before, The Sun columnist came under fire for an article she wrote likening migrants to cockroaches.

And her second show on LBC was no less controversial. This time, Hopkins chose to focus on remarks she made about Channel 4 programme Born Naughty?, during which a team of behaviourists, psychologists and doctors diagnose children with troubling behaviour.

She was heavily criticised for branding a nine-year-old child with autism a “twat”, and blaming her parents for not disciplining her properly. She further compared her to a farm animal, made jibes about her weight, and suggested her parents were sponging off the taxpayer for specialist help they didn’t need. Before that, she’d likened former Labour leader Ed Miliband’s behaviour during the debates as “on the spectrum”.

The autistic community called for her to apologise. The National Autistic Society invited her to meet some of their members who live with the livelong developmental condition that affects how a person relates to, and communicates with, other people, and makes sense of the world around them.

Both of which would probably be surprised to hear the admission Hopkins made on the radio as she discussed the premise that another condition linked to autism, ADHD, had been “over-diagnosed by doctors” and was really “just excusing rubbish parents”.

One caller, father Jason, whose son was diagnosed with ADHD, said he sometimes feared that he was a bad parent, and pointed out that some of the defining features of the condition were subtle. He also said that having watched Hopkins’ behaviour in the Celebrity Big Brother house last year, he felt she displayed some of the characteristics of a person with autism.

“I probably am on the spectrum,” she told him. “I did an interview with a journalist the other day, and said, ‘Look I’m definitely on the spectrum’.”

 

Other stand-out moments of the show included Hopkins praising one tearful caller, who was the mother of a child diagnosed with ADHD, for having the courage to call her out.

“Some days are very, very challenging, but they are just normal children and want to be part of normal life, and to say that is just unfair,” Lemore from Mill Hill said.

“You don’t seem to understand what it’s like to have someone with ADHD in the house.”

“It takes a lot of courage to come on here and tell me I’m wrong,” Hopkins admitted. “It’s easy for me to point the finger.”

She later admitted she had “softened” to the emotional recollections of some of the parent callers.

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