The political class exhibited typical lack of class after President Barack Obama announced his pick for Surgeon General at the Dept. of Health and Human Services. Dr. Regina M. Benjamin, MD, MBA, Founder and CEO of the Bayou La Batre Rural Health Clinic in Bayou La Batre, Alabama, has an impressive resume by anyone’s standards. Her education and accomplishments include being the first African American woman to be president of a State Medical Society in the United States.
The “progressive” [actually “regressive”] ABC News network reported: “Critics and supporters across the blogosphere have commented on photos of Benjamin's round cheeks, saying she sends the wrong message as the public face of America's health initiatives.”
In other words, some perceive Dr. Benjamin as fat.
Dr. Benjamin is considered fat because: (1)Adolphe Quetelet, a Belgian who died more than a century ago developed the Body Mass Index (BMI), (2) the Glitterati view the ideal for women as stick thin verging on masculine and (3) the weight loss industry is influential enough to push standards that deem more Americans are fat, thus pushing the industry’s bottom line up.
Read up, by the way, on that dead Belgian. A page hosted on the University of Minnesota website gives some details. If Quetelet walked the earth today we’d call him a racist. By his standards a number of athletes are fat. How many black people you reckon Quetelet included in his studies? How many Americans? Experts say more than half of African-Americans are obese. Think about the logic, and ask yourself if when man was conceived, God didn't have diversity in mind. More than half sounds like a standard needs to be reset.
But the real hypocrisy arises when we consider the man who heads up the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee in the US Senate. That would be Sen. Teddy Kennedy, certainly no model of physical accomplishment, and a man with a definitely libertine history until recent years. Anyone want to weigh in on the senator’s BMI and how that does or does not impact his service on a committee planning to expand socialized medicine for the benefit of those alleged 45 million uninsured Americans we hear about all the time?
Everybody’s yammering about race these days. Maybe what those wagging tongues need to address is the oldest bias in human history, in part due to Mother Nature: gender bias. Dr. Benjamin is qualified; she’s probably the best pick I’ve seen our inexperienced president select.
Obama’s nominees have screwed up their taxes, made questionable calls on prosecuting voter intimidation and made racist statements suggesting Latinas are superior to black and white people. If we include the czars, we’ll run out of space.
And the political class is worried about how this accomplished physician looks when I’m betting few in that class could keep up with her level of productivity on a daily basis? The alleged brains at Salon even took guesses at her weight.
The same ABC News story said, “The nominee didn't return calls from ABCNews.com, so there is no information about how much she weighs or her eating and exercise habits.”
Re-read that last sentence to absorb the complete idiocy in that statement. Whatever her weight, it is no business of mine or yours. It’s the good doctor’s choice. Last time I looked, we still had personal liberty in this country, though it hangs by a sheer thread.
Here’s the clincher. The story also said, “[N]ew data coming from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey…show that more than half of so-called overweight people are metabolically healthy, compared to one-quarter or about 16.3 million adults 20 years or older, who are 'metabolically abnormal.'"
If there’s a researcher in the land who refuses to be bought by the weight-loss industry, you might take a look at that dead Belgian’s other theories. Start with the fact the dead guy was a mathematician, not a doctor.
As for Dr. Benjamin, I'd like to invite her to the next conservative meeting in her area. I'll guarantee you she will find far more tolerance for diversity than the political class ever held in their hearts or misguided minds.
If the doctor can do the job she is eminently qualified for, her critics should back off.
Political class shows lack of class over Obama's surgeon general pick
by Kay B. Day
The US Report, Jul. 22, 2009