39 posts tagged Privilege
Let us be clear about something. Medical equipment that cannot accommodate fat bodies does not have to be that way. Fat bodies are not some divine mystery that human science cannot fathom. If the health care establishment cared to accommodate fat bodies, then fat bodies would be accommodated. It really is that simple. An medical industrial complex that denies access to fat bodies is not a natural phenomenon. It is a choice. And we should damn well respond to as such. A lot of oppression and marginalization tries to pass itself off as just how things are. Just something we have to accept. Bullshit. These things are choices. They are decisions. They are priorities revealed.
Case in point? Once it was “understood” that fat people cannot be anesthetized. Hell, a lot of doctors still think that today and I gather a lot of anesthesiologists are still allowed to not know how to treat fat patients. But when the health care establishment thought up the various organ mutilation and amputations marketed as weight loss surgery, you will not be surprised they figured out how to put a fat person under very quickly. Because it was never impossible. Just something they didn’t care to learn. Same as why they direct most research to be performed on white male patients. Because they don’t care to learn how things might effect women or people of color differently. They made the choice. Don’t let them pretend they didn’t.
Pay attention to this, it’s important.
The medical world isn’t in stasis, ever. In fact, if you can’t keep up with how it changes, you will never be more than a mediocre doctor — and a dangerously mediocre one at that. Research is being done constantly, new perspectives and points of view are being brought in, and breakthroughs are being made — constantly. This is true in human medicine and in veterinary medicine.
Medical professionals and, more importantly, the companies that sponsor conferences and manufacture equipment, medication*, textbooks, and medical literature have agendas. The people working for them have agendas. They have biases. They have privileges.
Case in point: symptoms of heart attack in women are often drastically different than those in men, but because we’ve all learned the symptoms of heart attack in men, many women don’t recognize when they’re having one. That shit is dangerous.
If you are aware that history books don’t tell the whole story because they have been traditionally written by white heterosexual men, you should be aware of the way that same lens has affected the medical world. Mind you, I am by no means suggesting you shouldn’t seek medical help if you need it, or that the medical world is a load of bullshit (it’s not). But it puts you in good standing to be open-minded about the information you’re absorbing.
*If anyone turns this into a “NO MEDICATION EVER THE PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES ARE BRAINWASHING AND HURTING US ALL!!” thing, I will find you. The system of pharmaceutical medicine is totally broken, but please don’t act like people with serious medical or mental disorders don’t need medication. Like, for real. Knock it off.