May 16, 2021 - Largest US doctors association launches antiracism plan
The AMA's equity strategic plan, linked in this article, provides some of the most clear and unequivocal history and data related to social bias so far produced in the discourse of social identity, social bias, and social justice. Information in the document is readily usable or adaptable for the study or historic, structural, and ongoing inequity in this country. One example of the sort of honesty found in the document is this acknowledgment:
Land and Labor Acknowledgement:
We acknowledge that we are all living off the taken ancestral lands of Indigenous peoples for thousands of years. We acknowledge the extraction of brilliance, energy and life for labor forced upon people of African descent for more than 400 years. We celebrate the resilience and strength that all Indigenous people and descendants of Africa have shown in this country and worldwide. We carry our ancestors in us, and we are continually called to be better as we lead this work (p.4).
While explicit in its intention to go beyond "good intentions to a comprehensive analysis of structures, systems, policies and practices leading to real improvement and impact; and from lack of accountability to an active embrace of equity as a core mission and strategy (p.5)," and to "push upstream to address all determinants of health and the root causes of inequities (p.8)" it's important to ask if the plan is in fact as thoroughgoing as efforts need to be to truly dismantle the underpinnings and uproot the psychology and not merely the medical malpractices associated with of racism and other forms of social bias.
For example, the plan forthrightly recognizes the speciousness of race while also reifying race and racial categorization and racial identity by referring to racialized people as members of races ("Black people" and "whites"). This is akin to recognizing and affirming that the Earth is not the center the solar system while at the same time depicting the arrangement of the planets and sun with the earth at the center of it all. To recognize race as a social construct and then continue to act as if its quite real is a kind of one step up and one step back movement that ultimately leaves us where we are.