Rosie O’Donnell faced criticism after she raised questions about the possibility of President-elect Donald Trump's youngest son Barron being autistic. The comedian explained her comments late Saturday, saying she questioned if Barron was autistic because her daughter was recently diagnosed with the condition and she recognizes the symptoms.
O’Donnell came under fire by fans after she took to Twitter last week, saying: “Barron Trump Autistic? if so — what an amazing opportunity to bring attention to the AUTISM epidemic.”
“Here is how it went down,” O’Donnell wrote in a statement. “My 3.5 year old daughter Dakota was diagnosed in September with HFA — high functioning autism. I have been immersed in that world/reality since learning — reading — asking questions. It’s all autism — all the time for the newly diagnosed. As we try to grab onto anything to keep us standing, the knowledge we r not alone there r others living this too.”
She went on to write: “But this autism subject — had nothing to do with Donald, though i admit he does trigger me in all ways — i have no ill will for his children — or any children — and if u knew anything about me — u would know that.”
O'Donnell's message on Twitter speculating about Trump's 10-year-old son also linked to a video that received more than 2.5 million views on YouTube since being uploaded Nov. 11.
“Donald Trump’s youngest son Barron Trump might be autistic, and it’s time for people to stop bullying him for his ‘strange’ behavior. Let’s follow Melania Trump and #StopTheBullying,” the video description reads.
The seven-minute video shows Barron’s mannerisms captured on camera during the few times he appeared on TV.
“His hands are moving erratically and aren’t touching each other,” the text on the video reads. “Then he was spotted making strange movements in his seat, typical in children with autism.”
You can read O’Donnell’s entire message here.