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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

MSNBC - African American Women: Where They Stand – 0 for 2

Professor Tracey
, WAOD Contributor

For the second night in a row, MSNBC presented another disappointing “investigative” segment with information about black women that could have been discovered by simply googling “black women and breast cancer.” I am now officially wondering how much “research” and “investigation” is actually being made in connection with this series.

What didn’t they talk to anyone connected to the National Black Women’s Health Project? This organization celebrates their 25th anniversary in June. My mother who invokes the memory of the Tuskegee Experiment every time I criticized her for not participating in medical clinical trials focusing on black women, has regularly participated in NBWHP’s clinical trials.

Why didn’t they talk to anyone that is actually working hard to get black women the medical care that they desperately need? Black radio personality, Tom Joyner is entering into the sixth year of his annual “Take a Loved One to the Doctor Day”. The Susan G. Komen Foundation has specifically targeted black women to get free mammograms. All black sororities from the AKAs to the Zetas regularly put on local and national programs addressing black women’s health.

A real investigative report would have addressed the following questions –

Why are black women NOT participating in medical clinic trials?

Why are medical doctors using medical research collected from white women to treat black women?

What OTHER facts are contributing to breast cancer being such a devastating disease for black women? Weight issues? Too much stress? Being single and fighting a serious disease?

What kind of preventive measures would specifically help black women avoid or successfully lessen their chances of getting breast cancer?

Are there support groups for black women who are breast cancer survivors?

Borrowing Attorney Mom’s sidebar:

I did not have high expectations for this series, but this is a new low. Since when did a paltry five minutes of news reporting over the course of two days qualify as investigative reporting? Rahema Ellis should be feeling the heat as should anyone else connected to producing this half-assed series.