- September 30, 2020
- 7:00 pm
(US Pacific Time)
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Please Note: This live online conversation was recorded on our CIIS Public Programs YouTube Channel. It is also available on our podcast.
In these pandemic times, and times of racial justice uprising and reckoning, the failure of U.S. and global health care systems to meet human need or to even ensure the basic safety of health care providers continues to be revealed. How did we get here?
Join Mordecai Ettinger CIIS faculty and multi-sector social justice organizer for a talk exploring the hidden history of white supremacy and colonization embedded in the Medical Industrial Complex (MIC)—a web of institutions—from hospitals, dialysis centers, and nursing homes, to health insurers, big pharma, and the corporate polluters that they are entangled with. The MIC has gained and sustains its irrefutable authority from resources and rationales brutally mobilized and extracted through transatlantic slavery, attempted genocide, systemic ableism, and eugenics. This removal and dispossession are at the persistent expense of Black, Indigenous, Brown, disabled, queer, transgender, nonbinary, and fat bodies. Our bodies, communities, and ecosystems bear the burden.
As these truths become more evident, it is harder to see the interconnections among big pharma, corporate polluters, climate chaos, and the rise of disease rooted in environmental racism and classism. In this talk, Mordecai reveals how big pharma’s ties to eugenics and connections to big agriculture and other multinational chemical corporations renders the MIC complicit with both the climate change that threatens planetary collapse, as well as with causing and profiting from the very illnesses it is designed to treat and prevent.
Mordecai addresses the myriad ways in which the MIC generates, perpetuates, and upholds ableism—particularly racialized medical ableism—as among the most dangerously violent and destructive forces of our times. Finally, Mordecai offers a vision for hope, a path forward for transforming the MIC and creating alternatives for health and healing, a crucial part of humanity’s collective liberation in which we all have a role to play.
Please note that this talk/conversation will be hosted live online and includes an audience Q&A. Instructions on how to join the conversation will be included in your event confirmation email. If you need additional assistance finding or joining the event, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mordecai Cohen Ettinger has 25 years' experience as a multi-sector social justice activist and organizer, healer, radical scholar, and educator. Mordecai is adjunct faculty at the California Institute of Integral Studies. His field is critical science, technology, and medicine studies. Mordecai’s research spans environmental health and toxicology, to the workings of the Medical Industrial Complex, to the neurobiology of the social nervous system, and its implications regarding collective and historical trauma, healing, resilience and social change. Mordecai is the Founding Director of the Health Justice Commons. He co-founded the TGI Justice Project, served as an Interim Co-Director at Justice Now, and as Interim Executive Director at Caduceus Outreach Services, a radical mental health organization. Schooled by years of movement work, and trained in Somatic Experiencing, Reiki, and Cranial Sacral therapy, he has studied with Dr. Peter Levine, biophysicist and founder of Somatic Experiencing and Dr. Bessel van der Kolk. He is the author of the forthcoming book, We All Hold Up the Sky: Lessons in Health Justice for the 21st Century. Finally, Mordecai is queer/ gender non-binary. He is a survivor of radiation poisoning and what is designated by the UN to be medical torture. He's here for disrupting and transforming the Medical Industrial Complex for our futures to be possible.