CDC Chief Dragged For Tweet Commemorating Horrific Tuskegee Syphilis Experiments
WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 14:  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky testifies during a Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions hearing about the federal response to monkeypox, on Capitol Hill September 14, 2022 in Washington, DC. The U.S. is working to contain the largest monkeypox outbreak in the world, with more than 22,600 cases across all 50 states. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), took some heat Tuesday on Twitter after announcing a plan to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the end of the Tuskegee syphilis study.

The study, which began in 1932, enlisted more than 600 black men to record the natural progression of syphilis. Throughout the study, however, a number of ethical protocols — namely “informed consent” — were ignored, and when penicillin emerged as a treatment for the disease in 1947, it was intentionally withheld from the study participants. The study ended in 1972 after The Associated Press’ Jean Heller exposed the experiment and a review board determined that the entire study had been “ethically unjustified.”

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the end of the Tuskegee syphilis study. Tomorrow, I will be joined by colleagues & #PublicHealth leaders as we honor the 623 African American men, their suffering & sacrifice, and our commitment to ethical research and practice,” Walensky tweeted on Tuesday.

Critics quickly responded, most taking issue with the word “sacrifice” as if the participants in the study had been given any real information about the potential impact that withholding treatment could have on them and their families.

“This is just a remarkably awful tweet about a horribly unethical thing done to innocent human beings who deserved much better,” Kimberly Ross tweeted.

“Whitewashing one of the most horrific incidences of governmental racism conducted against African Americans in the modern era,” Dario Morrow added. “The Tuskegee experiment didn’t end until 1972. Many black people don’t trust the medical profession to this day because of this. She’s shameful.”

“‘Suffering and Sacrifice’?? The Government murdered people and when there was a cure they weren’t offered one. I’m amazed this tweet was sent,” Chef Andrew Gruel responded.

“She needs to resign and live the rest of her days in shame for allowing this statement to be put out on her name!” Lavern Spicer asserted.

“Can’t tell if this is a brilliant jab at the CDC or if they’re serious,” Ed Latimore tweeted before realizing who Walensky was — at which point he added, “(EDIT: I didn’t realize this was the Director of the CDC. Holy s***, these people are monsters). Either way, this is about to get a massive ratio lol.”

“I think it’s actually pretty important to distinguish between making a sacrifice and being sacrificed,” Jerry Dunleavy observed.

In 1973, one year after the Tuskegee study officially ended, attorney Fred Gray filed a class action suit on behalf of the families. The resulting settlement gave over $9 million to the study participants.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  CDC Chief Dragged For Tweet Commemorating Horrific Tuskegee Syphilis Experiments