November 07, 2006

Neoliberalism is the NEW Tuskegee

There must be something in THEIR genes, right? They are poor. They are sick. They are uneducated. They get asthma and diabetes like it's a style. They pass these traits on to their kids. Poor folks have issues. And science promises to get to the bottom of it...as long as they get their tenure at their prestigious university.
This won't hurt a bit, I promise.
Doing bad in the name of good is ok, right? NYU scientists gave kids in the South Bronx portable air quality monitors, to carry around for one month. Guess what? “I think it’s an indicator that these kids are being exposed to very high fine-particle concentrations on a fairly regular basis,” said George Thurston, associate professor of environmental medicine at the N.Y.U. School of Medicine. Breaking news: poor kids get asthma at astronomical rates. That's our NIH-sponsored tax dollars at work. That's medicine's "do no harm policy" at work. That's a scientist ensuring that he'll become a tenured professor. That's the advancement of one more career, at the expense of the American poor. Guinea pigs are so passe. Science has moved beyond rats and guinea pigs.
It's no secret that kids in the South Bronx get asthma at rates that eclipse even the third world. It's no secret that the South Bronx is home to expressways, warehouses, trucks, cars, ports, garbage barges, abandoned ships, and CHILDREN. Can YOU make the connection? Do YOU want a career in public health?
It's no secret that asthma is a business. It's no secret that inhalers, ventilators, and Albuterol are more than just medicines. They've become school accessories. The morbidity and mortality of the "urban city dweller" are questions that have become a means to advance your career. Need a master's in public health? Study the effects of poverty on the health of the Negro. Need a PhD? Study the effects of urban living on the city dweller. That diploma will look nice hanging in your Westchester living room.
Real solutions require WORK. Real solutions require policies that change city planning. Real solutions require legislation that invests in people. Real solutions are POSSIBLE. Did YOU vote?
People are dying HERE and NOW. In our backyards. Black men in Philly are dying faster than Black men in Iraq. We don't need another NIH-sponsored study. We don't need another PhD thesis. We don't need another tenured professor. We need a REVOLUTION.


3 Comments:

Anonymous dallas said...

Let me open up this comments section with one word...


FIRE!!!

4:06 PM  
Blogger Hummingbyrd said...

People are dying HERE and NOW. In our backyards. Black men in Philly are dying faster than Black men in Iraq. We don't need another NIH-sponsored study. We don't need another PhD thesis. We don't need another tenured professor. We need a REVOLUTION.
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But if we stopped going to school, we would have to actually have to BECOME productive.

7:07 PM  
Blogger vik said...

true. i dread that moment.

the question we should ask ourselves, is our schooling going to allow us the opportunities to BE that productive member of society we so oten write about?

11:09 AM  

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