Tuskegee Syphilis Study - Controlled Genocide | 3

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

There's one thing Peter Buxton hopes everyone. Today's meeting understands he's no bleeding, heart liberal, he's been Republican all his life, and that's not gonna change. So if they think this is a matter of some naive starry-eyed idealist from San Francisco sticking his nose in where it doesn't belong while they couldn't be more wrong. Boxing looks down at his watch a ceiling fan words overhead he shakes his head. The tardiness is typical of what he's been dealing with since arrival in Atlanta for the CDC syphilis research conference, the government invited him out paid for flights and accommodations. Then basically ignored him. The only reason anyone even agreed to this meeting is because Buxton's been making so much noise about the ski syphilis study to his bosses at the public health service. They said it was an opportunity for him to make his argument in person, the Buxton thinks it's just to keep them in line. Well, they can stonewall all they want because Buxton's prepared for fight he looks down at the documents. He's brought with him. Reports and charts neatly organized in a plain Manila envelope all the evidence. He needs that the study is a moral outrage. Finally hearing footsteps Buxton, double checks, his ties straight as the men start to file in Buxton rises. Hello, gentlemen. He's met with silence frowns outright, glares no-one shakes his hand. So he sits down again. The officials cluster around the opposite end of the conference table, the end, furthest from Buxton so Buxton, stands walks down to their end of the conference table and takes see. Well gentlemen, thank you for joining me today. I'm Peter Buxton venereal disease investigator out of the PHS, San Francisco bureau, Dr William Brown, head of the venereal disease section of the PHS non silently unfolds. His hands behind his head hangs the American flag. He's going for intimidating but Buxton. Thanks, Dr Brown. Looks nervous to his left. Assistant surgeon general, Dr John Cutler. He looks irritated Cutler roles as is in Buxton's direction. We know perfectly, well, who you are Mr. Buxton. So why don't you just get on with Buxton doesn't miss? Well, Dr Cutler, I'd be happy to get on with. The ski study is morally unjustifiable and must be ended immediately Cutler. Smirks shakes his head dismissively, you know, I read the report he sent to Dr Brown here. That's actually why came today. I decided I need to meet you in person. See for myself if you're some sort of alcoholic or lunatic, or something rambling on about a study, you know, nothing about people never met this is serious work. We're doing here, young man serious work. You're lying to these men to their families. Letting them die from something that's been curable since nineteen forty five. Let me remind you. It's nineteen sixty seven sir, you're talking about harm to the black sharecroppers. Are you serious? They have nowhere to go. But up do you hear yourself? The PHS has spent thirty five years using these men as Guinea, pigs more than six hundred men, Dr Cutler and hundreds of them have already died, Mr. Buxton. Everyone in this study's volunteer a vol. Interior, I suppose you think the Jews Auschwitz revolve, here's to that's completely uncalled for I will not be lectured by some era Ghent on fort here report, you wrote, Dr color, you wrote that the subject would have never agreed to study without the quote suasion of burial expenses. I did not write that. I didn't write that must have been written by one of my colleagues, which one, I'd like to speak with him. Let me tell you a story. Group of poor, totally uneducated, and unsophisticated met their government, observed them. Yes. But for the good of science. And meanwhile government, also fixed every other element these men suffered free of charge for the duration of their lives lives that lasted much longer than they would have without that care who else in America hasn't so good. Okay. Doctor cutler. Now. I'll tell you a story, imagine one morning, you wake up to this headline white doctors in decades long, conspiracy to experiment on black men. The article describes you and your colleague standing by as one by one. These men have come to blindness heart injury than sandy for years to black men, said doctor, what's happening to me, and the white doctors lied. And they're still lying to this day. Are you actually threatening us? You have no idea what you're talking about. I don't see what else we discuss here Buxton gathers his documents. No, I'm not threatening. You not yet. But gentlemen. You better hope the world is not out about. This turn on the team. Watch the news, one of these nights, race riots black power negroes are not sitting for this kind of thing if we allow this experiment to continue, we are everything they say, we are, and we'll deserve everything will get Buxton stands without another word exits the conference room leaving the door wide open behind. American scandal is brought to you by chase. So you're thinking about buying a new home and chase. They know you whether it's vacation home condo in the city or new place. Closer to the grand kids. You're not slowing down anytime soon. So you need a lender who can keep up chase will save you money over time by showing you how you can pay off your mortgage faster. That's money, you can spend on new sports car or on a second home in Scottsdale or taking up goat yoga chase customer. Save more. Learn more at chase dot com slash A S chase. Make more of what's yours. All home lending products, are subject to credit in property approval rates program. Terms and conditions are subject to change without notice, not all products, are available in all states or for all amounts other restrictions, and limitations apply honing product offered by AP Morgan Chase Bank NA an equal housing lender. From wondering, I'm Lindsey Graham. And this is America scandal. The to ski study was nearly four decades old before anyone seriously questioned it, but it was never a secret. The black test subjects didn't know what was going on? But as the years passed more and more people in the white medical community did journals published papers regarding the study doctors disgusted freely during conferences throughout the nineteen thirties forties, and fifties. The doctors knew of the study saw as worthwhile research, that wasn't hurting anyone beginning in the nineteen sixties others in the healthcare field, like Peter Buxton sauce, something else on mitigated racism. Buxton learned of the study in nineteen sixty five as an employee of the PHS he attempted to end the study through the proper channels writing letter after letter to people at the top of his organization, he wouldn't let it go. And this led directly to his confrontation with Cutler nineteen sixty seven but it wasn't until nineteen sixty nine that the CDC which now oversaw. The study finally decided to take bucks in subjection, seriously officials can be panel that February not to end the study, but to discuss, whether it should be this episode three control genocide. Dr David censor removes his glasses and rubs his eyes. The always thought being director of the would be a dream job. Not a nightmare, the holier than thou gadfly, Peter Buxton quit two years ago. But that has not stopped this to ski thing from following sensor around. He opens his eyes and watches the doctors file into the conference room and take their seats, the state health officer of Alabama three medical professors senior officer from a medical foundation. Plus doctor Sidney landscape who used to run the study in question. But now works at Emory University. And of course, Dr Brown from the PHS, but there are no medical ethicists, and no black people. Sensor doesn't eat them here stirring, the pot. He's gathered the best of the best, and he sure they can figure it out on their own once everyone seated censor get started. He doesn't see the point and dragging this out any further. He briefly describes the study, then tells the men there in this room to decide future when it started. There was no talk of. Discrimination, or bigotry and no one had a problem with keeping the test subjects away from treatment. But now, people are asking questions and things were getting political so censor throwing up his hands, where here to decide we let the study go on. Or do we kill before opening things up for discussion sensor as Dr Brown review, the numbers, Dr Brown begins talking shaky voice Cording to his data? The original study group from nineteen thirty two was comprised of four hundred twelve black males infected with syphilis and two hundred four blackmail controls, never got sick, according to recent figures just fifty six if lyrics and thirty two controls now remain three hundred seventy three men in both groups are dead Brown tells the panel that he certain very certain that syphilis was the primary cause of death in only seven of them the youngest survivors, fifty nine years old. The oldest is eighty-five sensor, then announces that the matter is open for discussion, who would like to speak next. Dr j Lawton Smith off the Ma. Professor at the university of Miami argues. The study must continue he's examined, the test subjects for signs of we can vision and blindness and taken photos. He wants to continue doing so twenty years from now when these patients are gone, we can show their pictures, you will never have another study like this. He declares take advantage of it. Censors encouraged by the Nazis. But one man isn't nodding clearly unhappy. Dr Jean stolen chairman of the department of medicine at the university of Tennessee in a low voice sensor says before we continue at one of you shut that door. Sensor, considers the many doctor seated around the conference table of the men here. Stolman is the only one who wasn't aware of the study prior to being asked to assess it. And if he has reservations. Well, disagreements medicine are nothing new stolen can make arguments sensors confident that he can counter them all Dr stolen you look like you have something to say, yes, Dr censor do. Now, I don't want it to bait anyone as to the scientific merit. The study L remind even be a few, but that is nothing to do with the morality. What's happening here, the morality? Yes, Dr sensor, it's time to think of these tests subjects, not as test subjects, but as unique patient suffering from an illness. I mean what happened to the Hippocratic of, you're not suggesting just a moment, please. I'm not finished by the standards of our profession. This is an unethical study. At least as it's presently being carried out not gonna sit here and say kill the study your else. I will say this. Let's examine. Each patient and determined on a case by case basis, if treatment would be beneficial at this point in their lives, but that would completely undermine the goals and intentions of the experiment. And frankly, I take issue with your ethical judgments here. I don't find the study on the tests, subjects are being treated just not for syphilis and I'm thankful for that. Dr censor believe me, as I'm sure these men are, but penicillin exists it didn't in nineteen thirty two. It does. Now nineteen sixty nine though it may be inconvenient for some people in this room. We have a moral obligation to cure these patients, if possible though, respectfully, I disagree understood. I know you disagree, but I'd like to add just one more thing, more and more people will find out about the study in the years to come. I don't wanna be here when they find out the repurpose flea withheld penicillin for men who could have been saved by there's only silence. Sensor scans the room for rebuttal. He's thankful to see it appears doctor Lansky may already have one allows you, please. Go ahead. Well, thank you. Dr sensor with regards to the penicillin question surely, must know that introducing drug this late the progression of the seas carries its own risks. I don't know that these risks are worth and frankly, of course, censor- thanks treatment at this point is dangerous. He's grateful when another doctor says that he assumes the group probably wouldn't even accept treatment if offered. So why even ask sensing momentum fully on aside censor puts it to vote. The results are nearly unanimous study will continue. With that settled censor asks, the panel to tackle second issue. How do we make sure the press? He's this our way. Everyone knows the most bulletproof way to protect themselves would be to get informed consent from every test subject, but censor tells the group that this isn't feasible. So what's the next best thing, he's disappointed when stolen speaks I why isn't it feasible to get consent from the men censor explains it, slowly as he would to someone who's not very bright? The test, subjects are mostly elderly sharecroppers, who didn't make it past grammar school, if they ever attended in the first place to get informed consent from them talkers, would I probably have to explain what consent even was then they need to break down the facts of the experiment. Those facts would certainly lie beyond the comprehension of these men, but some form of consent should be attained. So how do they do it? One of the other doctors present sensor with solution. It's called surrogate, informed. Consent. They'll go to the physicians of Macon county, medical society and get them to sign off on the study on behalf of the test subjects to win on all fronts for everyone involved censor germs, the panel, and thanks the physicians for their participation in the weeks to come censor spearheads efforts to secure the cooperation of the medical society by September nineteen seventy he has it. It's a fischel. The to ski study is in its fifth decade with nothing to stop it. Untreated syphilis will still be observed the subject still won't know about it. And each of them will be brought to autopsy in due time the CDC will learn a lot in the process, censoring, Tippett's future. Looks bright. As the fog rolls outside his -partment in San Francisco, Peter Buxton sits kitchen, table with the afternoons mail, he sorts through and stops when he gets a letter from Dr Brown, at least it says, it's from Dr Brown, Buxton wouldn't be shocked, if his boss sensor, actually wrote a forum Buxton tears open the envelope and reads, he hates moments like this when once complete cynicisms validated Brown confirms that the experiment to ski has been reviewed by group of extremely qualified doctors who've come to the conclusion that it shall continue with no treatment provided to the test subjects. Dr Brown stresses that the decision to forego treatment is a matter of medical judgment. Since the benefits of such therapy must be offset against the risks to the individual. The latter is more or less, what Buxton expected. But it's incredibly frustrating, he knows Dr Brown isn't at heart. A bad person, none of these doctors. Are they just cannot see this from any perspective outside of their own? You wonder what words he could use to help doc Brown? See the true nature of what's going on here. Why it's unacceptable and unethical these black men or not just test subjects. They're human beings. And despite the enticing scientific possibilities. There are just certain things that human beings, do not do to other human beings three as simple as that as he begins to type his reply. Boxing knows his words will fail to convince Brown, if even reach them, but Buxton rights anyway, it feels good he types and types. He chronicles the history of the study decade by decade, and declares that the subjects can no longer exercise choice of ending their days free from syphilis. He catalogs, the moral medical, and legal issues, and concludes with this. What is the ethical thing to do compensate, the survivors, compensate, the families of all the subjects were should the CDC away, the quiet, demise of the survivors, and hope that will end the matter, Buxton believes that medicine is supposed to be. Simple, not easy. But simple, if a person has a problem and you know how to fix it. You fix it that feeling you get when, you know you made. So in better is supposed to be the reason you do what you do rereading his painstaking chronicle of everything. He knows about the ski study he wonders when that changed reply to Brown in hand oxygen walks to the mailbox at the end of his block. He's surrounded by a murky gray gloom, as far as the I can see. Doc brown. Never writes back and for the next two years. Buxton obsesses over the experiment. He attends law school and brings it up at every opportunity talked fella students. He talked professors. Everyone tells him the same thing it's a terrible experiment. But there's little legal recourse, the statute of limitations has likely expired from most of the test subjects involved boxing, could try writing a C L U. Maybe they'll know what to do. What finally and July nineteen seventy-two he bumps into Edith letter of the Associated Press at a dinner party tells her the story. She decides that together, they'll tell the world. American scandal is sponsored by slanted. So you're in a band, you're young hopeful got the right mix of rebel and showman you get a bit of a following than a bigger following. Hey, this is going, well, you're going to need to get organized. You do the stuff Bank account manager DA LLC, then you register for trademark on the band's name. That's when you realize you also need a lawyer to fight the government. This is the story of Simon Tam and his band. The slants, the government told him the slants was offensive, and they would not registered the trademark, but the Asian American band had chosen the name precisely to reclaim the word to rescue it. From us uses a slur, eventually Simon's case made it all the way to the supreme court of the United States. Slanted is the story of belief in Justice in the dignity of self identity Simon's, deeply personal account provides an honest, look at our legal system, inciteful comment around free speech and lessons and connecting with those disagree with. On the power of music slanted is gripping funny, enlightening up lifting and as Merican, as rock and roll read an excerpt purchase the book at slanted, book dot com or you can find it wherever books are sold. American scandal is sponsored by ZipRecruiter. You know what one of the absolute worst feelings is realizing you're in the wrong job, you look around on your co workers, busy, your Email ping. Your voicemail flashing. No. None of this is for you. You want something more out of your work? You know what feeling is worse than that, realizing you have to now go look for a job? But what if you had your own personal recruiter to help you find a better job now ZipRecruiter's technology can do that for you? Just download the ZipRecruiter job. Search up, let it know what kind of jobs, you're interested in and its technology starts doing the work the ZipRecruiter app. Fines jobs. You'll like input your profile in front of employers who may be looking for someone like you. And if an employer likes should profile ZipRecruiter less, you know, so if you're interested in the job, you can apply. No wonder zipper. Cruiser is the number one rated job. Search up American scandal listener should download the free, ZipRecruiter job, search apt today and let the power of technology work for you. Don't wait. The sooner you download the free ZipRecruiter job. Search apt the sooner it can help you find a better job. The day after her conversation with, Pierre Buxton Edith letter rushes to her desk at the Associated Press and rummages through it for a number. There's another journalist who must take it from here. Gene Heller AB research bureau. Jean Yves, hey spout to head out to Miami for the DNC. But I've got a couple of minutes perfect. I won't keep you. I really need your help right listening. I need you to investigate the PHS in the CDC do it myself. But my boss says, I can't you want someone closer to the action since you're in DC thought of you what action, you ready for this forty years of experimentation on black men in Alabama. Excuse me. Yeah. That's right. Most of the subjects have syphilis and have had it since the nineteen twenties. But the doctors never told them never offered penicillin. They're intentionally letting them succumb to the complications of their disease. Simply so they can observe the effects going to do it until every single one of them dies. There's a long pause on the other end of line finally Heller response. That's messed up. Yeah. So you can help me. Yes. Where do I start together charts letters stats everything you'll need? I'm literally just gonna put it in a box and ship it to you and let you take it from there. I think that'll work outta work after Lederer hangs up. She immediately begins packing the documents to send to her friend in DC, gene is the perfect person to blow this wide open. She's the best investigative reporter lenders ever met. And she knows everyone in Washington Jeanne will go to the CDC interview everyone. She can she'll dig and dig won't stop until everything buried is uncovered. And by the end of the month. Hellers work is done when she calls letter to let her know she still sounds prize at how easy the CDC made things for her. Let our new they would though after all as they see it. They took the prudent step of securing informed consent for the test subjects ethically. They're not concerned and legally, they're in the clear, but maybe they're not prepared for what happens next. The story breaks on July twenty fifth nineteen seventy-two in the Washington star. Two days later. John or Heller, long retired is at home with his wife. They're just about to sit down to dinner when the phone rings, the man on the other end of the line apologize for calling this late. But he's with the New York Times, and he has some questions. Heller says he has no problem talking about his time at the PHS, as director of the division of venereal diseases. He sixty seven years old and has absolutely nothing to be shamed of Heller explains the reporter that he was expecting this call even looking forward to it like the other surviving doctors involved in the formative years of the ski study his conscience is clear. In fact, he feels he and his former colleagues have been treated somewhat unfairly current government officials to be doing a bit more to stick up for the study leaders when the reporter asked about the ethics of denying. The test subjects treatment Heller has to suppress snort test subject probably got treatment anyway, from private doctors. They saw on their own time reporter asked if there's a record. Of which test subjects visited private doctors for treatment. Hello, shrugs. No documentation on that was capped by these sure it happened. Next question. The reporter then asks if there's anything Heller would have done differently. If given the chance the answer that it's no Heller thinks about von Miller, Wehner Clark. They don't deserve to have their names dragged with mud in their defense and his own. He replies. There was nothing in the experiment, that was unethical or unsigned typic-, then hangs up phone. Meanwhile, to ski nurse rivers is in her living room, straightening up duster in hand. She's a lot of time to do that. These days ever since they made her retire sixty five on account of rain. She's not bitter, though, just grateful. She got to work for as long as you did people ask, if she's worrying about what the papers are saying about the experiment. She replies that she's not worrying to all people can right within like they weren't there. They don't know her. She truly cared for those men and help to make sure they got to their appointments on time even after she was no longer fishery part of the study, just a few months ago, a neighbor wanted to know why she still did it. Why bother with patients and the ski you program, which didn't even work there anymore. Rivers replied with God's honest truth. They're friends of mine. I'm trying to keep up with them. So the department can keep up with them. I love those people. She thinks about them now as she looks up at her living room wall frame, there is her vehicle hobby award certificate store. Upon her by the US department of health, education and welfare. She never gets tired of reading the words to Eunice rivers for notable service coming twenty five years during which through selfless devotion, and skillful human relations. She is sustained the interest and cooperation of the subjects of venereal disease control program in Macon county. Alabama the certificate hangs between a picture of Dr king plaque inscribed with the Florence Nightingale pledge with a smile. She walked forward to dust it off. The phone won't stop ringing, Dr Melvin k Duval's office. He's tempted to pull the cord right out of the wall. Divall is assistant secretary for health and scientific affairs for the US department of health education welfare is department oversees, the CDC, which oversees the PHS, so he barely had a chance to read yesterday's AP story on the ski study before the damn phone started blowing up physicians politicians the media. It's endless in a statement, Senator proc Meyer, Wisconsin just cleared the study, a moral and ethical nightmare. Divall grimaces. It's a nightmare. All right. There's a knock on the office door and divall. Shouts to come in. It's the secretary here to write down devolves official statement, which will later be delivered to the press. Vol takes moment to collect your thoughts then begins I am shocked by ski stunning. No. He should be more forceful. He starts again. I'm. Shocked and horrified by the ski study. Although the study was begun in nineteen thirty two and although the opportunity to bring treatment to the men has long since passed. I am today, launching a full investigation into the circumstances surrounding. We will make a special effort to determine why the study was permitted to continue pass the time when penicillin became the effective drug of choice against the disease. He asked the secretary to find his spokesman divall wants him to remind the public when the study began forty years ago treatment for syphilis carried fatal risks. That's probably why it was withheld at the time, and he hopes these statements quite everyone down while he figures out what to do. Weeks pass as divall crafts, the official government response to the uproar, obviously, it's important to do the right thing. But it's equally important to do the right thing in the right way. And they're already been bumps he announced he'd conduct an internal review, but the public outcry was immediate government doctors don't get to police themselves anymore. They said fine divall can compromise. So today August twenty fourth. He's on his way to the front of his office, building to address the reporters himself after asking them to quite down. So we can speak. He boldly faces their lights lenses microphones, and shares. The new plan he is here today to announce that a citizen's panel will investigate the ski experiments, it will be run by broadest, Nathaniel Butler, president of Dillard university in New Orleans, divall has charged the panel with answering three major questions. One was the study justified to should the study be continued at this point. Time three our existing policies to protect the rights of patients participating in health research, adequate. And if not, what improvements recommended then the reporters began asking questions and divall dutifully answers each one in turn naturally, the first one concerns Butler, what led Duval to select him to run the panel for the assistant secretary. That's an easy one. I selected Mr. Butler because he's accomplished esteemed. Repeatable naturally. Divall refrains from saying what's for him Butler's, most significant attribute. He's black divall wishes. He could point out the Butler is actually one of five blacks on the nine person panel. And they'll obviously represent the public point of view over the scientific one he can't think of what more they could possibly want and also what he doesn't mention and what luckily no one points out that Duval is still very much maintaining control over one key aspect of the investigation by restricting the panel to his three questions. He's taking the issue of racism off the table. There's no question. For asking why the study was limited to black people in April nineteen Seventy-three, the citizen's panel issues its first report in his office divall wishes. He had a tall bottle of scotch to go with it because it's just as damning as feared so much his argument that the experiment was possibly more permissible by nineteen thirty two standards, the panel says it was ethically unjustified, even then it also adds that penicillin should unquestionably been provided to the men finally the panelists that existing protection for human test subjects are ineffective and inadequate. It's time for congress to create a permanent body charged with regulating, all federally sponsored research on human subjects fall size. It's truly all out in the open. Now. He puts down the report takes off his glasses. Then he surprised to realize that for the first time he's curious about what the surviving test subjects make on this us a feeling. The government is about to find out. A pastor and his wife scamming addicts out of millions there. Degenerate, son, locking them up so we can steal it all and dangerous. Conman in a runaway is cream truck. Don't miss the new epix original series perpetual, grace limited from the executive producers of the acclaim series, patriot comes this surprising war thriller, that will become your next binge worthy drama. Starring in alias cast including kademi award winner. Ben Kingsley EMMY nominee, Jimmy Simpson and two time Academy Award nominee Jackie Weaver. Get ready for plot. Twists. You never see coming and characters you can't trust. Or can you all is not what it seems when Griffin sets out to steal four million dollars from an elderly couple who run the local church that helps troubled souls, divine plan quickly goes to hell. When it turns out that they aren't just a couple of old people watch perpetual, grace limited on the epochs now app and discover the series people are talking about download the ethics. Now apt to wa. Critically acclaimed original series and thousands of movies. Start your seven day free trial today and then only five ninety nine a month with epochs now affects have we got a story for you? Charlie? You just have bad blood. They told him that in nineteen thirty two when he was just twenty six they told him that in nineteen forty five when he was thirty nine they told him that again, just a few months ago shortly after his sixty six birthday, their faces change over the years, but they're lies did not the government. Doctors have been laughing at him for forty years beating him down in a street fight. He didn't even know he was in Charles Pollard is driving now, his eyes intense focused on the road focused on the future. The future that now is entirely in his hands. Bente late the never he suppose as Pollard accelerates towards his destination. He now has one goal on his mind pay. Pollard pulls up to the law offices of Gracie Langford in Montgomery, Alabama. He likes Fred gray. He's a solid lawyer sharp, but always friendly always ready to help a while back, he helped handle some routine paperwork for Pollard gray. So humble to meet him, you'd never know. He was the most powerful black lawyer in the state of Alabama. He's exactly what Pollard needs. And he'll know what to do when Pollard enders Gray's office. The lawyer immediately rises degree him offers a firm handshake, by the it, how the family is policies. No time to waste no interest in trying to remember all the details. The papers printed instead he tells the story plainly. Yes, gray, if he's read about the men who were involved in the test for bad blood gray. Nonce knows exactly what Pollard is talking about read everything. He can about it then Pollard tells gray what he came here to tell him, I'm one of those men, you says smile drops from grace face is, is narrow as greens. Lowered tell me everything he says, so Paul talks and Cray listens. All had been at a stockyard among Gumri, a woman from the newspaper walked up to amount of the blue and asked him if he'd been in the Tuskegee health program from the thirties confirmed that he had the woman if he knew Eunice rivers, of course, he knows nurse rivers, he watches gray takes it all in taking notes writing faster and faster and faster Pollard walks through it year by year doctor, visit by Dr Bizet over half his life as a lab rat, and their experiment. When the stories done gray looks just as mad as Pollard feels great promises on the spot to throw the full weight of his firm at the case on behalf Apollon, and all the other black men dead and alive, who were tested gray tells him that well-deserved money is about to come to him. And a lot of it that the government has been embarrassed who happily pay to get this disgrace off the front pages gray expects generous offer in the coming months. And if one is not forthcoming, you'll sue them for everything. They've got and he'll win Pollard nods that sound about right. Payback. In February nineteen Seventy-three Fred gray sits and Senator Edward m Kennedy's office on Capitol Hill. It's not the first time in DC on official business not by a long shot. He's only forty three. He's already argued civil rights cases before the US court before that he defended Dr king during the Montgomery bus boycott. And even before that he defended MRs Rosa Parks, when she wouldn't give up her seat, now he finds on behalf of Charlie pollen gray. Turns is the forty year old Senator charges in he seemed to protocal matter-of-fact filled with purpose gray likes them, immediately, graph new, Mr Gray. I am sorry for the wait. No need to apologize and candy. I appreciate your time. Kennedy sits down loses. Time takes a moment to collect his thoughts. Then he gets down to what happened into ski was inexcusable. I understand you're representing the survivors. That's good. Thank you. Senator I helped to secure for the men what this country. Oh, them nothing less nothing more while. I'm here to help. We're both lawyers. We both understand how important it is with cases like this to win notches in the courtroom. But in the court of public opinion, I couldn't agree more good. So that said, I wanna keep you in the man you represent the opportunity to tell their story to the American people, I'm Charing series of Senate subcommittee hearings on health and human experimentation talking about sterilization, shock therapy cetera. Unfortunately to ski fits right in gray nantz, if it's all right. The two ski was a program of control genocide. I'll be at the hearings, and I know I can get at least one or two the men to accompany me, that's terrific. Peer bucks will be there as well. And together all of us will put pressure on Washington to get the survivors, the compensation entitled to. Now, let's get to our. Kennedy rises, great as the same the shake hands gray leaves the office confident he's found a new friend and analysis in late February. He introduces Charles Pollard to Kennedy the next day, the subcommittee hearings begin. Gray fines hearings to be surprisingly emotional, certain days, he wants to weep other as he so angry wants to excuse themselves to walk it off. But there's no running from this, and there shouldn't be it's time the crimes of the ph in the CDC were exposed the got away with it for far too, long Braise, jaw clinches, and frustration as a here's Peter Buxton recall, how he valiantly tried to end the study from the inside. But with stonewall he nods agreement, Dr J cats and Yale says, peer review panels don't provide enough protection for human test subjects. He's moved when Pollard and another survivor lesser Scott recount, how they were systematically, taken advantage of betrayed by men and women. They were told the trust their poverty and lack of education used against them. When Senator Kennedy asph, Lester Scott how the government can make amends, Scott says simply they ought to give us compensation or something like that, where we can. See other doctors and continue our health when it's grace, turn to speak. He doesn't hold back. He tells those in attendance at these men are done forever, dealing with PHS. He says they have no faith trust or confidence that the public health service will properly examine them and give them proper treatment, and had all the PHS will do now is try to cover up their unlawful conduct during the past forty years later, grays encouraged to see the Kennedys range matches his own this powerful white Senator fully understand the gravity of the crimes, committed Kennedy describes study as outrageous intolerable situation which this government never should have been involved in. In April nineteen Seventy-three Charles Pollard is out on his farm amongst the crops. He pulls up weeds tend to the soil. He thinks about the past the friends he's lost. Why are they gone while he still here doesn't make sense to him? So much of this just doesn't make sense. The phone rings and with as much speed as he can muster. He walked back to the house. It's still ringing as he steps inside. He picks up the phone as glad to hear his lawyer Fred Grace's voice on the other end gray. Thanks again for testifying at the Senate hearing. He says, things will change. Now, the CDC's going to track down, all living survivors of the experiment. Even the ones who didn't have syphilis and tell them they've got free health care for the rest of their lives. Pollard can expect a visit from field Representative soon and gray ads. Pollard should go see a doctor any doctor. He chooses someone with no ties to ski or the government. Finally, he's going to get the care he needs. All of this is good gracious. Him. But he and Pollard both. No, it's not enough. This leads to graze one piece of bad news. The government has not offered a cash settlement and doesn't plan to Pollard can only shrug he didn't have his hopes up. So what's next he asks gray? Are we done? No says gray. What happens next is this? We sued the federal government for two billion dumps. Next on American scandal. The study may be over what it's not the end of the story for Fred, dre survivors or the African American community by hope you enjoyed this episode if you did subscribe, now on apple podcasts Spotify Google podcasts wondering dot com or wherever you're listening to this right now. If you're listening on a smartphone tapper, swipe over the cover art of this podcast, who find the episode notes, including some details, you may have missed also find some offers for more sponsors. My supporting them you help us offer this show to you for free. And if you'd like to hear more of American scandal, and other one ratios in addition to receiving extra content early access exclusive perks you can subscribe to wonder plus, go to wondering dot com slash plus that's wondering dot com slash p l u s you can also find us and me on Twitter. Search for the hashtag American scandal or follow me at Lynn. A Graham, we use many sources when researching are stories but we highly recommend the books back Ludd to ski syphilis experiment by James, h Jones and to ski syphilis study, Fred Degray, and just a quick note about reenactments we can't always know what exactly was said, but everything in our show is based on historical research. American scandal is hosted edited, and executive produced by me, Lindsey Graham for airship sound design by Derek Barents. This episode is written by Hannibal DS, editing by Casey, minor executive producers are Stephanie jen's Jenny lower Backman and non Lopez for wondering.

Coming up next