1. Douglas Bowerman, MD, FACP, SFHM, FAIHQ

    My understanding of the purpose of DEI (among other purposes), is to promote ‘anti-racism,’ which is a goal that we can all stand behind, of course. However, after reading the mission statement of every DEI group that I have encountered (and SHM’s is no exception), I am left perplexed by what I see as a contradiction. It seems that the very foundation of DEI, and the prerequisite for its existence, IS racism. For me, racism is the identification and labelling of a person based on their race, and then, because of that label, treating them differently (either better or worse) than individuals who do not bear that same label. It seems that this is the process used in DEI to promote diversity and equity. How else is it possible to manipulate the representation of various groups of people without first identifying someone based on their race, and then clearing a path by giving them opportunities and advantages that are not equally offered to everybody? Is that not racism? If the goal, first and foremost, is to be anti-racist, it seems that would mean being anti-DEI (or at least anti-DE). I would like to be ‘included’ in the overall well-meaning DEI movement, but this issue is a sticking point for me. What am I missing?


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