Damon S. Tweedy, MD
Requests for Single Reprints: Damon S. Tweedy, MD, Duke University Medical Center, Box 3950, Durham, NC 27710; e-mail, email@example.com.
Tweedy D.; A Case of Racism and Reconciliation. Ann Intern Med. 2012;156:246-247. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-156-3-201202070-00017
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 2012;156(3):246-247.
One of my first patients as a medical intern was an avowed racist. Chester (pseudonym) was a lifelong smoker and fan of Southern cuisine whose bad habits finally caught up with him. His body failing, he turned to our hospital for help only to find me, a black man, as one of the doctors entrusted to extend his life. The year was 2003, but for a time, it felt more like 1963.
My resident received the call from the emergency department about our new admission just as we were sitting down for dinner. With the call went my appetite. I was struggling with the adjustment to internship like everyone else, perhaps more so given my recent 3-year hiatus to study law, so the last thing I needed was something to make my life even more difficult. But that is exactly what Chester and his family had in store for me.
Hugh, Mann, Physician
Eagle Rock, Mo 65641
March 14, 2012
What is racism?
As the pigment that darkens the color of our skin, hair, and eyes, melanin is a mixed blessing. It protects us from the harsh rays of the sun, but it also subjects us to the harsh gaze and words of racists, who blindly and blithely dislike and disrespect all dark-skinned people. Fusing ignorance with arrogance, avarice with cowardice, and caprice with malice, racism is a pigment of the imagination and an impediment to every nation. Racism is lunacy, not supremacy.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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