The Oklahoma Eagle Newswire
By Rebecca Marks Jimerson
Medical mistrust in the Black community is a reasonable and justifiable conclusion from studying history. It is a cruel irony that the same people who have endured centuries of inequity and injustice in the name of medical research are the ones who need the COVID-19 vaccines the most.
My sister is a Medical Doctor, so I know the burden she has pf having to acknowledge the past that many might dismiss while trusting in the current science. That is why it is incumbent on everyone to talk to our friends, family, and community about past and current injustices, but also about our future where we can take control of our health by getting vaccinated.
Early breakthroughs in gynecological treatment were achieved by non-consensual surgeries (without anesthesia) on enslaved Black women by J. Marion Sims from 1845 to 1849. Medical researchers conducting the Tuskegee experiment from 1932 to 1972 intentionally withheld treatment from hundreds of Black men with syphilis to see the long-term effects of the disease on the brain and nervous system. In 1952, stolen stem cells from Henrietta Lacks were used for many medical discoveries, including COVID-19 research today.
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