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June 21, 2021

We Can Heal From Hate Crimes by Practicing Solidarity

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, Internal Medicine Residency Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
JAMA Intern Med. 2021;181(8):1036-1037. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2021.2754

This was not how I envisioned my residency interview starting. I wipe my sweaty hands on my pajama pants, smile politely and apologize to the camera. “Sorry. Great question… I was born in Los Angeles,” I clarify, after being asked if I was born in China.

At another interview, I am asked about the race of my partner, with whom I am couples matching, and what it is like to be in an interracial relationship. I cannot help but wonder if my White colleagues are being asked these questions. I hope I will get a question about my health policy interests or, at least, the hobbies I had written about on my application. But instead, I am asked whether I would be interested in working with researchers in Wuhan, China.

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1 Comment for this article
But the stranger that dwelleth with you shall be unto you as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself
Binh Ngo, M.D. | Keck USC School of Medicine
Certainly facing the inequities confronting minorities in our society, we seem to have lost sight of the Biblical injunction to be kind to those who are different from us. The ties of similar race, ethnicity, culture, and language create groups with barriers to those who do not belong. Yet, those ties cannot ultimately resist the bonds of friendship between people of different origins. It is those bonds which create understanding and lead to common goals. The stranger too must be open and seek out the best in others so that we can all live together in a better world.