Have people not learned from the Tuskegee experiment which began in 1932?
In the past few days, news outlets and people all over the internet have been re-posting and sharing a disastrous interview of Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman, led by journalist Anderson Cooper on CNN’s Newsroom . Titles for these re-posts have mainly started with “Anderson Cooper GRILLS, RIPS, or STUNNED by…“, which gives a backdrop to the amount of ignorance Mayor Carolyn Goodman has towards her city, and COVID-19, which has led many people to call for her resignation.
Throughout the past few weeks, a battle has been waging between Trump’s populist base and scientific experts. Many protests have been staged around the US such as in Wisconsin in response to stay-at-home initiatives designed to help “flatten the curve” of COVID-19, despite expert approval . Politicians such as those in Georgia and South Carolina have also been opening up non-essential businesses and beaches, despite expert advice . Donald Trump has even backpedaled on his own hopes of reopening the US, saying that Georgia is not ready . Carolyn Goodman is also another example of a politician ignoring expert advice, saying in her disastrous interview: “You are putting words in my mouth, I said, open up Las Vegas” . She would like to open up the hotels, and the casinos, and tourism to Las Vegas. Very crowded areas, abundant with cigarette smoke and slot machines changing hands every day. Yet, she has not worked with the health department or hospitals, stating that it was “not her job” to help the department improve testing, despite mayors such as Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles “doing everything he can to improve testing” for his city . Carolyn Goodman seems to have an extreme plan, despite not seeming to know much about what her department or hospitals are doing.
Another issue is with her disregard of scientific studies, in which he dismissed scientific research on COVID-19 spreading in restaurants as “this is not China”, due to the research simply being done by scientists in China . “Wow, okay that is really ignorant”, stated Anderson Cooper, a valid response to a mayor who does not seem to have a grasp or understanding of the situation. She also tried to make connections between COVID-19 to the West Nile Disease, Typhoid, or Polio which have spread differently compared to COVID-19 .
One absolutely unforgivable statement admitted by the mayor was that she claimed to offer Las Vegas as a “control group” for COVID-19, while also giving the citizens a “placebo” while others get the actual shot . To use any person as a guinea pig, to strip them of their wellness while lying to them is a complete erosion of democracy and the freedom of people. One should be reminded of the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment, a study pushed by racism, and the democratic erosion plaof African Americans who were victim to the dishonesty from scientists . Although Carolyn Goodman’s intentions are not racially motivated, her statements bring about worry that the experiment could happen again in another form. Her plan was only stopped because the experiment could not work, not the thought that it was ethically wrong.
Politicians and people such as Carolyn Goodman need to begin listening to experts and history, or else we can expect future consequences that will impact our health, as-well as our democracy and freedom.
 CNN. 2020. “Anderson Cooper presses Las Vegas mayor over wish to reopen.” 23, Apr, 2020. (23, Apr, 2020).
 J. Epstein, Reid, and Kay Nolan. 2020. “A Few Thousand Protest Stay-at-Home Order at Wisconsin State Capitol.” 24, Apr, 2020. (24, Apr, 2020).
 The New York Times. 2020. “Coronavirus Live Updates: Trump’s Remarks Prompt Warnings on Disinfectants; Georgia Businesses Reopen.” 24, Apr, 2020. (24, Apr, 2020).
 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2020. “The Tuskegee Timeline.” 23, Apr, 2020. (23, Apr, 2020).
Image taken from CNN Newsroom Interview of Carolyn Goodman, hosted by Anderson Cooper.