American Samizdat

Thursday, March 27, 2008. *

by Ishmael Reed

"J. Marion Sims, a leading 19th- century physician and former president of the American Medical Association, developed many of his gynecological treatments through experiments on slave women who were not granted the comfort of anesthesia. Sims's legacy is Janus-faced; he was pitiless with non- consenting research subjects, yet he was among the first doctors of the modern era to emphasize women's health. Other researchers were guiltier of blind ambition than racist intent. Several African Americans, including such as Eunice Rivers, the nurse-steward of the Tuskegee study, served as liaisons between scientists and research subjects.

"The infringement of black Americans' rights to their own bodies in the name of medical science continued throughout the 20th century. In 1945, Ebb Cade, an African American trucker being treated for injuries received in an accident in Tennessee, was surreptitiously placed without his consent into a radiation experiment sponsored by the U. S. Atomic Energy Commission. Black Floridians were deliberately exposed to swarms of mosquitoes carrying yellow fever and other diseases in experiments conducted by the Army and the CIA in the early 1950s. Throughout the 1950s and '60s, black inmates at Philadelphia's Holmesburg Prison were used as research subjects by a University of Pennsylvania dermatologist testing pharmaceuticals and personal hygiene products; some of these subjects report pain and disfiguration even now. During the 1960s and '70s, black boys were subjected to sometimes paralyzing neurosurgery by a University of Mississippi researcher who believed brain pathology to be the root of the children's supposed hyperactive behavior. In the 1990s, African American youths in New York were injected with Fenfluramine -- half of the deadly, discontinued weight loss drug Fen-Phen -- by Columbia researchers investigating a hypothesis about the genetic origins of violence."

With this kind of record, is Rev. Wright paranoid when he speculates that AIDs might be the result of an experiment gone wrong or even as some black intellectuals assert a ethnic weapon? Given these recorded instances of abuse by the government and private groups, would anybody put it pass them? The New York Times has carried a series about Eli Lily's role in distributing a drug called Zyprexa. Seems that the company knew about the dangerous side effects of this drug before they put it on the market ."Eli Lilly, the drug maker, systematically hid the risks and side effects of Zyprexa, its best-selling schizophrenia medicine, a lawyer for the State of Alaska said Wednesday in opening arguments in a lawsuit that contends the drug caused many schizophrenic patients to develop diabetes."

I have long admired Dr. Reeds, work, be it his poetry or literary prose ever since I heard him speak on campus many years ago, he is a first rate academic researcher and scholar which makes it all the more advantageous to people who read this, must read article. Reed describes what a propagenda lynching looks like in 21st Century America.
posted by Uncle $cam at 1:45 AM
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