Rachel Maddow on Racial Disparities in Infant Mortality

This is a story about what happens when extreme right politics get in the way of saving lives, specifically for birthing parents and their babies. Rachel Maddow tackles the racial disparities that cause the infant mortality rate in Mississippi to be worse than that of Sri Lanka and Botswana. The national infant mortality rate is atrocious at 6.8 deaths per 1000 live births. And the rate in Mississippi is a heart-stopping 10.6 per 1000 live births. (for 2005-2007 as recorded by the CDC). Maddow interviews Dr. Carl Reddix, an OB/GYN that was just ousted from the Mississippi board of health for apparently being too pro-abortion for the new right-wing players in the government (who are apparently to the right even of Haley Barbour, the right wing anti-abortion former governor of Mississippi who appointed Dr. Reddix to the board originally).

The problem? Dr. Reddix agreed to back up a clinic that provides abortions. As in, if something goes wrong during a procedure and they have to transport to a better equipped hospital, Dr. Reddix agreed to provide care for the patient. I would have thought that even people who are staunchly pro-life would be for a very well-qualified doctor providing life-saving care to patients experiencing a complication from an abortion. We might disagree about whether abortion is ok, moral, or should be legal. Surely we don’t disagree about whether we should provide care to an adult in medical need, regardless of their choices.

 

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