Famous folks redux

Over on Atlanta Cures Dyslexia Bill Allen has a page headed “Rich and Famous Dyslexics: Dyslexic Talents Unleashed!” that I suspect he hopes will inspire people to work hard and achieve great things.

What talented dyslexic – your child? — is next in line for life success? Once overcome, dyslexia can be a creative gift. The dyslexic is predominantly a 3-dimensional thinker, “seeing” or, more accurately, “perceiving” a whole picture when processing the input of many senses. Called “Big Picture Thinking” by The Learning to Read Program, this ability makes the dyslexic a very creative person when working with three-dimensional objects or physical events.

Look who’s dyslexic!

This is followed by a two overlapping lists of at least 70 names. Most of them are celebrities of one sort or another (entertainment, sports) or historically important figures. People who are familiar with other sites that identify individuals who putatively have Learning Disabilities will recognize many of these names.

There were some new ones for me, though. I do not remember previously reading assertions that Loretta Young, Michael Faraday, Gustave Flaubert, Andrew Jackson, Thomas Jefferson, Steve Jobs, John F. Kennedy, or Robert Kennedy had dyslexia. Does anyone know where I learn about these individuals’ Learning Disabilities?

Sigh. Probably not.

I understand that people hope lists such as this one will prove inspiring to children and even adults who struggle with learning. But, do the lists serve that function? And, are they accurate? Who completed the diagnosis of, for example, Michael Faraday? In addition, what about all the people who definitely have dyslexia and have accomplished a lot, but who are not famous? And what about all the individuals who have dyslexia and are managing to make it without fame and fortune?

Link to Mr. Allen’s page. There’s also a reading program available there; that’s a post for another day.

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