Science, Inventions, Medicine, and Aerospace


What is black America’s attitude toward medical experiments?

According to the book Medical Apartheid (2006), research was conducted on black prisoners between the 1950s and 1970s. By the 1970s, however, such research began to wane. In recent years there have been “medications marketed for ‘genetically distinct’ populations of African Americans.” Medical Apartheid also notes that medical research “has not spared black children its very worse abuses in the name of scientific research.” Black children have been recruited “primarily or exclusively” for medical experiments, focusing on such areas as violent behavior in families and experimental vaccines. A recent study revealed that medical experiments on the black poor continue. The book The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, published in 2010, recounts the use of an African-American family’s cells for research and profit. The study was conducted without informed consent. Some believe that the study, as well as documentation of early experiments, reinforces black America’s lack of confidence in medical experimentation and treatment.


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