The chair of Columbia University’s Department of Psychiatry was suspended on Wednesday, “with immediate effect,” after mentioning a dark-skinned model could be a “weird” on Twitter.
“Whether a work of art or outlandish nature she is a sight to behold,” department president Jeffrey A. Lieberman tweeted Monday in response. a photo of Nyakim Gatwech. Ms. Gatwech is an American model of South Sudanese descent; Fans call her the “Dark Queen”.
Dr Lieberman’s Twitter account was inactive on Wednesday afternoon and he did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
In an email to his colleagues on Tuesday before his suspension, he apologized for the tweet, describing it as “racist and sexist.” He added that he was “deeply ashamed” of “his stereotypes and assumptions”.
“An apology from me to the Black community, the women and all of you is not enough,” Dr. Lieberman wrote in the email. “I have hurt many people and I am beginning to understand the work ahead to make the necessary personal changes and over time to regain your trust.”
Dr. Lieberman, who specializes in schizophrenia and is considered one of the nation’s leading psychiatrists, was also removed from his position as a psychiatrist at Columbia University Irving Medical Center/ NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. According to a Columbia University spokesperson, that decision is final.
Department leadership convened a meeting for faculty and staff on Wednesday afternoon to discuss the situation, and announced that a temporary chair would be named. Several hundred people attended the Zoom meeting, according to one person who attended, and the tone was very serious and serious. The head of the hospital described the tweet as “outrageous”, the person said.
The post has drawn negative attention from a number of online health professionals, many of whom are black women.
Dr. Lett said in an interview.
The Columbia University Department of Psychiatry is one of the largest such parts nationally, and consistently achieves top rankings, including on US News & World Report’s list of best hospitals.
Robert Klitzman, a professor of psychiatry at Columbia, described the episode as “unfortunate” and said it “really highlights how profound and pervasive some of our unconscious biases are.” .”
He notes that Dr. Lieberman has spent decades doing important research on schizophrenia and other pathologies.
“I think this incident speaks to the need to remain vigilant in our perception of our own unconscious biases,” Dr. Klitzman said.
American Psychiatric Association give an apology in January 2021 for helping to perpetuate structural racism in psychiatry, saying it has enabled “discriminatory and prejudiced actions” within the organization and “racist practices in psychiatric treatment.”
The organization promises to “rectify,” including by expanding access to quality mental care for people of color.
White Psychiatrists Anatomy Black Behavior for hundreds of years, presenting racist beliefs as a scientific fact.
Dr. Benjamin Rush, who is considered the “father” of American psychiatry, believes that Black is the result of a mild form of leprosy.
And many prominent psychiatrists argued after Reconstruction that black Americans were unfit for independent life, calling them “primitive” or “savage.”
Dr Lieberman’s post was in response to a tweet calling Ms Gatwech “it” and describing her as “the prettiest of the black beauties.” It false statement that she entered the Guinness Book of World Records for her dark skin.
“I can’t imagine being even able to tell who is the brightest or the darkest person on the planet!”, Mrs. Gatwech said in an Instagram post that dispelled rumors and included a screenshot of Dr. Lieberman’s tweet.
She added: “I love my dark skin and the ‘Dark Queen’ nickname.
Miss Gatwech has working to challenge beauty standards favors lighter skin tones, and has inspired other dark-skinned women to embrace their look.
“Dark skin is normal, dark skin is just part of the normal variation of human existence,” Dr. Lett said. “Stigma language has a psychological impact. It makes people sad.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/23/nyregion/columbia-jeffrey-lieberman.html Jeffrey Lieberman, Chair of Columbia’s Department of Psychiatry, Suspended