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Crazed Loons – JAMA And Structural Racism

There’s a lot of ruin in a nation as we’ve been told. But perhaps not as much room for ruin in a civilisation as all this:

The editor-in-chief of Jama, the Journal of the American Medical Association, has been placed on leave amid controversy over comments about structural racism made on a podcast by one of his deputies.


No, really, that is what is happening. A bloke who works there said something the woke don;t like. Therefore the boss is put on gardening leave. That’s taking responsibility quite a long way really, isn’t it?

The comments at issue were made by Dr Ed Livingston in February, in conversation with Dr Mitch Katz on a podcast entitled “Structural Racism for Doctors – What is It?”

“Structural racism is an unfortunate term,” Livingston said. “Personally, I think taking racism out of the conversation will help. Many people like myself are offended by the implication that we are somehow racist.”

A tweet promoting the podcast said: “No physician is racist, so how can there be structural racism in healthcare? An explanation of the idea by doctors for doctors.”

The tweet was deleted but backlash was intense.

In one tweet, Dr Uché Blackstock, founder of Advancing Health Equity, wrote: “1) Yes, physicians can absolutely be racist. 2) Yes, physicians can be complicit in upholding the practices and policies of systemic racism. 3) [T]his tweet shouldn’t have be[e]n deleted. It was … (yet, again) another learning opportunity for your journal.”

Nearly 7,000 people signed a petition calling for Jama to “stop perpetuating racism in medicine”.

It’s that last which is the real problem here. That the entire world and every part of it is structurally racist is such a part of the current religious orthodoxy that to question it, even to try and ponder through the evidence for its existence or not is to utter heresy. And, of course, heresy must be anathematised. No if, no buts, bring out the burning torches and let’s have that auto da fe.

We are all August Landmesser now.

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3 years ago

Well, Dr Uché Blackstock is certainly racist. And so, no doubt, are Advancing Health Equity and

I didn’t think Jama was racist, but since they’ve caved in to this utterly gross example of racism, maybe I’m wrong.

3 years ago

A doctor can certainly be prejudiced, as in being extra attuned to sickle-cell anemia when a black patient presents signs of it. “Racism” adds a belief in the superiority of one race over another, which is laughably irrelevant. Dr. Blackstock is calling for the practice of medicine without using reason. This, of course, is deadly.

3 years ago

Ooh, 7,000 people have signed an online petition! Must be popular!

It’s not. By contrast, 170,000 people have signed a petition on the same site to get a sequel to the Alita movie. The site only requires one to sign up, i.e. give an email address that one can respond to.

JAMA is a jelly.

3 years ago

“A learning opportunity for your journal”, that statement sums up the ridiculous nature of this kind of attack, another recent example being when Naga Munchetty talked about “the views of the BBC”.

The attempt is being made (and succeeding) to force journals and corporations to have political views, encouraged by their own decisions to have “values”, especially in the case of the BBC.

No, we are just a journal or a corporation, we do not have collective values or views.

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