I find "walkingpneumonia's" rainman comment very distasteful and 100% uncalled for. I think an apology is owed to Zev and his family and friends.
Perhaps you could use this opportunity to educate us CTYankee??
I work with children, know several people with Asbergers, and have a best friend with a child who has the diagnosis as well. So I am embarassed to say that I did not know that "rainman" was considered derogatory in any way.
I thought that the term referred to an "autistic savant", which is of course a VERY limited 1988 view of autism, not a 2009 view.
But I always thought that as limited in the portrayl of only one very rare form of autism as it was, the movie did at least introduce a lot of people to autism.
And while I only remember the broad outline of the movie, IIRC, when I think of the movie I remember it as showing a brother coming to love and appreciate and understand his autistic brother, much as Zev has done for Asberger's and TAR viewers.
I will say that RFF prides itself on NEVER allowing derogatory comments to be made regarding anyone with a disability...whether that be a "little person", an athlete with one leg, a hearing impaired racer, or someone with Asberger's.
In my mind, ZEV has touched all of our hearts and opened many, many eyes to Asberger's, and has been an inspiration to all of us, proving yet again that nothing need stand in the way of achieving a dream.
If the term "rainman" IS insensitive, I certainly would like to know for future reference, so any guidance you could offer would be appreciated. I know that during Charla's time on the race, a lot of people learned that the term "midget" was considered offensive, so if this is a similar case we all need to be made aware, so thank you for mentioning it.
But we LOVE Zev and his determination, his humor, and his racing skills around here, so I am very sure no purposeful disrespect was intended.