The esteemed New England Journal of Medicine has advanced a recommendation by California academics that medical schools should divide up students on the basis of their race.
Although the Bay Area academics behind the proposal, published on April 27, did not specify whether water fountains, bathrooms, and bus seats should similarly be zoned for persons depending on their skin pigmentation, they did, however, call for medical students to receive instruction in racially segregated groups.
This woke proposal, in keeping with the University of California at San Francisco's so-called anti-racist efforts to "decolonize the health sciences," has been met with fierce opposition and called "morally abhorrent."
An indecent proposal
The proposal was penned by a number of academics and administrators from UCSF, including social worker Leanna Lewis; pediatrician Camila Fabersunne; assistant professors of pediatrics Corina Iocopetti and Dannielle McBride; and "inquiry program coordinator" Gabby Negussie-Retta.
The UCSF crew stated as though it were a fact in their proposal that racism is the "root cause of racially disparate health outcomes" and that medical education is founded "on legacies of colonialism and racism."
On the basis of this ideological claim, they stressed that "we need curricula for training physicians to dismantle the systems that perpetuate these inequities. Since traditional approaches to medical education are themselves founded in inequitable systems, new approaches are essential."
Since a scientific, rational approach to problems of disease and injury — and training future doctors to tackle them — is apparently racist, the UCSF crew recommended the embrace of so-called racial affinity group caucuses.
RAGCs are "facilitated sessions involving participants grouped according to self-identified racial or ethnic identity to support integration of antiracism curricula into clinical practice."
The perceived utility of these RAGCs is that each racially segregated group can process critical race theory doctrine within the context of their "own racialized experience," that is without the intrusion of people who don't look like them.
Additionally, Lewis and company intimated that nonwhites can't hack it in existing medical schools, suggesting that non-segregated learning can be "retraumatizing, resulting in imposter syndrome, heightened anxiety, and a reduced sense of belonging."
To remedy this "reduced sense of belonging," the UCSF crew proposed group isolation.
"Some BIPOC people have been socialized to care for the egos of White people, to express their emotions only in ways that are palatable to White audiences, and to tread lightly around 'White fragility,'" said the proposal. "In a space without White people, BIPOC participants can bring their whole selves, heal from racial trauma together, and identify strategies for addressing structural racism."
The academics further noted that the UCSF School of Medicine has successfully piloted this segregationist initiative, using RAGCs for struggle sessions, "optional spaces for students and trainees to debrief about current events," and for re-education attempts.
While Lewis and her fellow segregationists reckon black people and other "people of color" ought to exploit these RAGCs to "build community, deepen their understanding of and healing from racism ... express a full range of emotions," and altogether celebrate their racial perspectives, they conversely figure white people should use these opportunities to escape and/or dismantle their racial perspective.
Do Not Harm, a medical group committed to protecting health care from being undermined by a political agenda, condemned the proposal, noting on Twitter that it amounted to "racial segregation in medical education."
"This sends a deeply concerning message about the priorities and principles of what is supposedly the most prestigious journal in American medicine. Our physicians and patients deserve better," said Do Not Harm.
The group's founder, Dr. Stanley Goldfarb, a professor emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania’s medical school, blasted the New England Journal of Medicine and called on it to "apologize for running such an illiberal and extremist article," reported the Daily Mail.
"'It is difficult to understand how such offensive language made it past the gatekeepers of this prestigious institution," Goldfarb wrote in a letter to the journal. "In these same pages, authors and editors have been covering the unprecedented exodus of physicians and other staff leaving the clinical profession due to demoralization, burnout, and toxic work environments."
"Have you considered the possibility that divisive and highly politicized pieces such as this might be worsening this crisis, in addition to moving medical education toward segregation?" added Goldfarb.
He further highlighted that the proposal's authors simultaneously stated that nonwhite medical students "are incapable of succeeding in the presence of students of other races" and "white people are inherently menacing."
The New York Post reported that Goldfarb previously indicated that so-called "anti-racism" policies, such as those advocated by Lewis and the UCSF crew, are "lowering standards, reducing students to the color of their skin and corrupting medicine in general."
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