Harvard med school removes portraits of prominent white, male doctors

The president of Harvard's teaching hospital got to thinking one day and decided there were too many portraits of white male doctors hung in a popular amphitheater. She bemoaned the horrible situation that people walking into the amphitheater didn't feel like they "belonged." 

The problem cried out for a solution. So she moved several portraits of prominent white doctors in order to be more diverse and inclusive.

Problem solved?

Campus Reform:

The hospital’s president, Dr. Betsy Nabel, told the Globe that moving the portraits is the right decision: “I have watched the faces of individuals as they have come into Bornstein. I have watched them look at the walls. I read on their faces ‘Interesting, but I am not represented here.’ That got me thinking maybe it’s time that we think about respecting our past in a different way.”

Sorry, Betsy, but you're not "respecting" the past at all. In fact, you're trying to scrub it clean by disrespecting those who came before you and made Harvard med school the place it is today.

Of the 31 various doctors and department heads that have their paintings hung in the Louis Bornstein Family Amphitheater at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, all are men, 30 are white, and one is Chinese. They’ve been described as “pioneers of medicine,” and getting a portrait hung there is something great to aspire to, according to the white male doctor who most recently had his image installed, Dr. Ron Walls, founding chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine.

But apparently having a cluster of white male doctors’ portraits — great as they may be — sends a message to employees and students that “white men are in charge,” Dr. Jeroan Allison, a professor at the University of Massachusetts Medical School who researches health disparities, told the Boston Globe, which first reported the news.

A hospital official told the Globe removing the portraits will create a “sense of belonging” for women and minority employees and students.

If you stop and think about it - something that SJW's are incapable of doing - it is a racist act to remove a portrait based almost entirely and completely on the color of someone's skin. That there are no women represented is more a matter of former customs and the admittedly sexist attitudes toward female doctors, which prevented women from achieving the same level of prominence.

But are there any women or minorities who deserve to have their portraits hung alongside the portraits of these white men?

… Dr. Harvey Cushing, the “father of neurosurgery,” who studied at Harvard and Yale and became surgeon-in-chief at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in 1913. Cushing operated on hundreds of patients each year with “remarkable results,” and his meticulous notes and case studies provided the “history of neurological medicine from its beginning.”

Another prominent portrait to be moved is Dr. William Councilman, the first chief pathologist at Brigham Hospital. Cushing described Councilman as “a man of ardent and generous enthusiasms” and an “inspiring teacher for the young and such a delightful companion both for young and old.”

The portraits of Cushing, Councilman, and Dr. Henry Christian, Brigham’s first chief of medicine, will be moved to the entrance of the Hale Building for Transformative Medicine. The Hale Building is named after Robert Hale Jr., a white male and CEO of Granite Telecommunications, who, along with his wife, donated $100 million to Brigham, the largest donation the hospital has ever received.

Is merit and achievement to be discarded in favor of the racial and gender numbers game? That minorities and women were denied opportunities to excel in the past is our great loss. We would be a better country if the same opportunities available to women and minorities today had been offered over the last 300 years.

But they weren't available. Is the answer to punish white males and ignore historical reality that made white males the beneficiary of a society where  these opportunities were denied certain people?

You aren't going to "fix" America by denying our past. The lot of women and minorities will not improve by embracing the destruction of history. You're not going to get rid of racism by tearing down confederate monuments and statues, nor are you going to wipe out past injustices by scrubbing the past clean of white males. 

It is simple minded to believe that you can cover your eyes and make racism and injustice  disappear. 

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