Thursday, October 11, 2018

Henrietta Lacks, the hubris of both John Hopkins University and the NIH and the medical community

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This is no surprise. U. S. scientists have always used poor populations on which to test out new drugs or procedures or simply play God. This usually meant BLACK populations but could include those seen as disposable too - The mentally challenged. Any woman back in the day seen as "loose." Any non-White person. Any person who was termed "retarded." The list went on and on  And the atrocities continued into the mid 70s in lots of states.

One instance happened at a hospital where my mom worked as a nurse in the the late 60s to early 70s. To her horror, she noticed that young Black women with two or more children, who came to the hospital to deliver another child, were allowed to remain in the hard labor stage without anything to take the edge off. Hours would go by. She saw these women scream in pain and she would attempt to ease their pain only to be shooed away by the attending.Why was this allowed to happen? Because the state had on record that these women were either unmarried, or of "low I. Q." or were "poor with what was seen as too many kids." Most were on public assistance.  They were seen as unworth and their wants unimportant. So, making them miserable during labor meant a doctor could swoop in, like a White knight, at the last minute with a paper for them to sign to get "pain relief." In actuality, the fine print also stated that while delivering the relief and the patient's child, he could STERILIZE her too!

My mom left that hospital. I'm certain she was threatened not to talk or else. After that, every woman she could reach in our neighborhood she told  not to deliver at Such-An-Such Hospital and to have someone to read over anything anyone hands them at another

Researchers are notorious thieves. There. I said it. They are forever looking to hone in on each others work and steal the limelight, credit and any funds. I know believe me. I worked at a company full of the fragile souls

So, the disrespect shown to Henrietta Lacks when she was alive and after her death and to her family is par for the scientific world. These types love to point fingers, be holier-than-thou because they are doing it for humanity, yadda, yadda, yadda. Please shut up..

It is shameful that the Lacks family is not being paid for their loved one's contributions to society. Literally her contributions, her tissues (The HeLa Cell line) have been sold around the world for cancer research and for AIDS research. Procedures or treatments developed in the last 40 -50 years, were made from her stolen flesh, her amazingly aggressive cancer cells that live to this day in some Petri dish in labs around the globe. These finds have made scientists worldwide hella rich and the Lacks family has received not a coin.

So, if you or your loved one survived cancer in, say, the last half a decade, get down on your knees and thank the Lord and a little Black baltimore housewife named Henrietta Lacks.

You owe her.

P. S. John Hopkins University who STOLE her tissues will name a new campus building after Henrietta. Big whoop! Pay her family, thieves!

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