Monday, July 13, 2009

Being Dr. Regina Benjamin

President Obama has nominated Dr. Regina Benjamin as the surgeon general. As the top advocate for the people, this nomination strikes me as a supreme choice, as Dr. Benjamin has long been an advocate for the people, especially for the least of these among us. According to the Associated Press she "made house calls along the impoverished Gulf Coast, paid whatever her patients could scrounge." Dr. Benjamin has "received the Nelson Mandela Award for Health and Human Rights in 1998, and Pope Benedict XVI awarded her the distinguished service medal Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice." We would be so honored to have such a surgeon general as an advocate for the people, even those "powerless" poverty-stricken among us.

6 comments:

Pamela said...

President Obama is not only a remarkable individual in his own right, but he has the ability to find, recognize and surround himself with remarkable people as well. What an excellent choice! The face of this country is changing to match the rest of its body. I look forward to see more of the effects this calibar of an administration will continue to have on our country and the world.

Judith Ellis said...

Yes, Pam. I have been impressed with President Obama's cabinet, including Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice, Arne Duncan, Robert Gates, Eric Holder, Kathleen Sebelius, Rahm Emanuel, and others. I have not been impressed with Timothy Geithner. This "calibar of an administration" as you noted does not seem to simply be those with ideas only and no actions. They seem to be action-oriented. Now, let's see how Washington changes them. By many accounts it seems to be a very strange place. Many go in pure and ready to work and leave corrupt and lazy.

Marion said...

Dr. Benjamin sounds like a remarkable, compassionate woman perfect for the job. The world needs more people like her in postions of power to speak for those who have no voice. Great post, Judith!

Judith Ellis said...

Indeed, Marion. I have just read some bloggers talking about her "obesity" as an issue. I understand this and would like our surgeon general to be thinner as child obesity is such a big problem here in the U.S. I must also say that we are too fixated on body image, and not health, which is also a problem. I'll take her image and policy if I had choose between these and a lesser candidate who was thin.

Pamela said...

When I saw Dr. Benjamin's photo honestly her weight issue never crossed my mind. When I worked as a medical secretary I had the pleasure of working for a wonderful female physician who herself suffered from obesity. It was an issue and the Dean often brought it to the physicians attention about their weight especially since they were Endocrinologist. However, she was a brillant doctor. Her patients didn't care about her weight they valued her knowledge and her passion as well as her compassion.
And it appears Dr. Benjamin has all three of those and more.

Judith Ellis said...

Pamela - Thank you for that. I am, however, always concerned about the image we give to our youth. But I do agree with you that she seems highly qualified and that she has compassion and a very big heart. She will undoubtedly be a great advocate.