I’m sure you know by now that there is a play that makes the one autistic character a puppet. That is problematic. Let me explain: Turning the one different character into a puppet only makes them not human. It gives the play a sense that there is an alien among them. And, since that alien is autistic, I am an alien too. Of course, now the United States lock aliens in cages.
Some people say this is like Julia from Sesame Street. However, I disagree. On Sesame Street, puppets and monsters living there are a way of life. They are treated with the same respect that any human is. Coming back to Julia, she was given an introductory episode with all her traits outside. Most Sesame Street characters appear through various points in the show, and are treated as regulars.
Of course, maybe they tried to avoid casting an autistic actor, or a non-autistic actor in an autistic role. I’ve got a request: Let’s do better. If you can’t find an autistic boy to play the role, find an autistic girl. If the role is “too adult,” get an adult autistic actor to play the child. No offense to the play producers, but making a person a puppet to stand them out is wrong. It dehumanizes them.