The House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing on Wednesday featuring a witness who calls for the elimination of “whiteness.”
The subcommittee on health will hold a hearing titled, “Health Care Inequality: Confronting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in COVID-19 and the Health Care System.”
The hearing will detail the alleged racial and ethnic disparities in America’s healthcare system. House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-NJ) claimed in a memo about the hearing “studies also show that racial and ethnic minorities receive lower-quality health care even when insurance status or severity of conditions are comparable.”
One of the witnesses — Rhea Boyd, MD, MPH, a pediatrician and child health advocate at Palo Alto Medical Foundation — has enflamed controversy as House staffers and even the Wall Street Journal recently raised the alarm over Boyd’s inflammatory remarks.
For instance, in her prepared testimony to the committee, she cries foul about the perceived injustice that white Americans make more money than Hispanic or black Americans. She wrote, “In 2016, for every dollar of income white households received, Latinx and Black households earned only 73 cents and 61cents, respectively. And for every dollar of wealth white 15 households have, Latinx and Black households have 7 and 6 pennies, respectively.”
In the medical journal, the Lancet, Boyd makes controversial remarks about eliminating “whiteness all together.”
Boyd wrote in January 2020:
This entanglement between access and scarcity, privilege and loss, means white people’s unearned advantages have always been tethered to a legacy of untold deaths. This is not the result of an emotional positioning, but a structural one. In Dying of Whiteness, Metzl intricately outlines this structural framework but too often anchors it to an emotional foundation his analysis both critiques and depends on. This is perhaps why his conclusion is to “Promote more healthy and selfreflective frameworks…of structural whiteness” when the only solution is to eliminate whiteness all together.
The solution to defending whiteness is not self-reflection. It is not a difficult conversation. And it is not centring white emotions, however distressing they may be. The solution is those who can become white must summon the courage to unbecome white and then to eliminate whiteness, “the system, the way of life, the philosophy [producing] murderers”. [Emphasis added]