Tuskegee Syphilis Experiments

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Racism in American society has been deeply engrained into the cultural norms since colonization. Racism has infiltrated every facet of our lives, including in the medical field. This medical racism was particularly portrayed by the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiments, which occurred from 1932-1972. The Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment and its relationship with governmental organizations represent the idea that racism is deeply engrained in American society. Additionally, the discontinuation of the study portrays the attempt to integrate African Americans into society. The Tuskegee syphilis experiments were performed on the campus of Tuskegee College in Alabama. The premise of the study was to view the impact of untreated syphilis in the African American…show more content…
The doctors in the study performed in contrast to known standards within the medical community, such as giving your patient adequate information. This is not only wrong in the case of Tuskegee, but in any social situation. “The USPHS did not tell the men that they were participants in an experiment; on the contrary, the subjects believed they were being treated for "bad blood.”” The total disregard for the patient’s well being in the name of scientific research is not just about the patient’s race, but also about the feeling of power that members of the medical community felt they had. Not only did the doctors in the study conceal information about treatment and infection, but also their justification for this was that it would make an “unfavorable impression on the negro.” The doctor’s justification for the withholding of information is blaming the population that is being wronged. Additionally this justification allowed the study to get away with racial ideals that were not known to public. However, this study could have been stopped if the government had intervened, unfortunately, they condoned the…show more content…
The study acted as a representation of the general public’s view of black Americans. The only reason the study was ultimately discontinued was the public outcry. “On July 25, 1972 the results of her journalist investigation of the Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male were published. The response to Heller's revelations was broad-based public outrage, which finally brought the Study to an immediate end.” If there was so much public outrage about the study, then the public must want social change to help eliminate institutionalized racism. The public’s radically different opinion than the doctor’s and the government’s opinion was incredibly important to not only the end of the Tuskegee Syphilis experiments, but also to the success of movements for social change. It showed that the public opinion could overcome institutionalized racism in the United States. If change was going to happen in America, it was the public who would make that change, not the people in

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