On March 16, 2024, surgeons at Massachusetts General Hospital transplanted a genetically modified pig kidney into a 62-year-old man suffering from end-stage kidney disease. The groundbreaking operation was, among much else, a refutation of the STEM diversity crusade, which threatens the medical progress that lay behind the landmark procedure.

Transplant recipient Richard Slayman had endured the usual debilitating effects of kidney failure for years. Healthy kidneys filter toxins and excess fluids from blood and excrete those waste products as urine. When kidneys fail, if no donated human kidney is available to replace them, patients spend hours a week hooked up to a dialysis machine that filters their blood mechanically. Slayman had already spent seven years on dialysis before receiving a human kidney in 2018. That transplanted kidney itself faltered, however, and by 2023, Slayman was back on dialysis. This time, though, he required biweekly visits to the hospital to keep his blood vessels open. He developed congestive heart failure. And he rejoined the more than 100,000 Americans waiting, often futilely and fatally, for a human kidney.

If Slayman’s new pig kidney continues to function, the capacity to transplant animal organs successfully into humans (a process known as xenotransplantation) will be as significant as curing cancer, says nephrologist Stanley Goldfarb. Getting to this point required 125 years of scientific creativity and an ever more complex understanding of molecular biology. None of that development had anything to do with racial identity.

Slayman’s genetically modified pig kidney represents a return of sorts to the origins of transplant science. When surgeons started contemplating organ transplants in the early twentieth century, they initially focused on organs from other mammals, since harvesting human organs was considered problematic at best. The French surgeon Alexis Carrel began a series of transplant experiments on dogs after discovering how to connect arteries to arteries and how to widen narrowed vessels—prerequisites to organ transplantation. For the next several decades, surgeons in France, Germany, Russia, and the U.S. transplanted goat, sheep, and monkey kidneys into dying human patients, but the organs (and patients) quickly failed. It would take the evolution of another branch of medical science—immunology—to understand why.

It turned out that the human immune system was attacking the foreign tissue. The more distant the donor mammal from the human species, the more vehement the immunological response against the transplanted organs. Within minutes after transplant, a rejected organ might swell up and become discolored under a barrage of antibodies and white blood cells attaching to its surface and destroying the interloper.

In response, chemists and microbiologists began developing drugs that lessened the risk of organ rejection by suppressing the immune system. In 1961, the American plastic surgeon Joesph Murray used immunosuppression to transplant a kidney between genetically unrelated humans. The recipient survived a year—by contemporary standards, a resounding success.

But the drugs and other procedures used to suppress the immune system could themselves prove fatal by leaving a patient unprotected against overwhelming infection. What was needed was a way to avoid triggering an immune response in the first place. The following are a handful of the most notable (and also Nobel Prize-winning) of the thousands of discoveries that would make that possible. The Venezuelan-American immunologist Baruj Benacerraf, along with Jean Dausset and George Snell, identified key proteins on cell surfaces that trigger immune defenses. The British biologist John Gurdon learned how to transfer nuclei among cells, thereby transferring the genetic code from a donor cell to the target cell. Gurdon also confirmed that a nucleus from a fully differentiated somatic cell would revert to its initial state and trigger the process of cell division leading to an adult organism all over again, if that nucleus is transferred into an undifferentiated, enucleated zygote. Biochemists Emmanuelle Charpentier, Jennifer Doudna, and Feng Zhang discovered how to edit genetic code using bacterial enzymes, in a process that came to be known as CRISPR.

Thus it came to be that eGenesis, a biotech company in Cambridge, Massachusetts, produced a pig kidney that the human immune system, it was hoped, would not recognize as alien. The company extracted a cell from a pig’s ear and removed genes from the cell’s nucleus that produce proteins offensive to that human defense system. As insurance, the company added human genes to the pig nucleus that would mimic human biochemistry. eGEnesis inserted that edited nucleus into a dividing pig zygote. That zygote grew up into a bespoke pig, with the edited genetic code from the pig ear in every cell of its body, including its kidneys. The goal: those kidneys, denuded of their capacity to produce especially problematic pig molecules, would find a welcome home in a human being.

Before the Slayman procedure, genetically modified pig kidneys had been transplanted into brain-dead patients and had started filtering those patients’ blood. Slayman was the first living recipient of an edited pig kidney. When he came out of the operation successfully, the leaders of Mass General Brigham (the umbrella entity for Mass General Hospital) rejoiced. The hospital’s clinicians, researchers and scientists had shown “tireless commitment . . . to improving the lives of transplant patients,” said the president of the complex’s academic hospitals. One of the transplant surgeons acknowledged the history behind this latest scientific milestone: The “success of this transplant,” said Tatsuo Kawai, is the “culmination of efforts by thousands of scientists and physicians over several decades. . . . Our hope is that this transplant approach will offer a lifeline to millions of patients worldwide who are suffering from kidney failure.”

According to STEM diversity dogma, however, none of this should have happened. Slayman is black; his transplant surgeons were not. The scientists who pioneered the biological and surgical advances that made the transplant possible were also nonblack. Worse, before the mid-twentieth century, those pathbreaking scientists were overwhelmingly white.

These demographic facts mean, according to today’s medical establishment, that Slayman was at significant risk of receiving substandard care from a medical and scientific enterprise that is racist to its core.

According to the National Academies of Science, America’s most prestigious science honor society, “systemic racism in the United States both historically and in modern-day society” produces “systematically inequitable opportunities and outcomes” in medicine. Such medical racism privileges white patients and white doctors, explains the National Academies of Science, and is “perpetuated by gatekeepers through stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination.” The Journal of the National Cancer Institute and its sister publication, Journal of the National Cancer Institute Spectrum, blasts the “systemic and institutional racism within health care” responsible for “inequities” in medical outcomes.

The best way to guard against such inequities, according to the STEM establishment, is to color-match patients and doctors. Similarly, the best way to advance science is to select scientists on identity grounds. The National Institutes of Health, which funds biological research, argues that a “diverse” scientific workforce will be better at “fostering scientific innovation, enhancing global competitiveness, [and] improving the quality of research” than one chosen without regard to racial characteristics. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, another federal funder, seeks scientists of the right color to “develop a highly competent and diverse scientific workforce capable of conducting state-of-the-art research in NIAID mission areas.” It is a given, per the National Academies of Science, that “increasing the number of Black men and Black women who enter the fields of science, engineering, and medicine will benefit the social and economic health of the nation.”

Slayman’s transplant surgeons—Leonardo Riella, Tatsuo Kawai, and Nahel Elias—came from non-European, non-white countries: Brazil, Japan, and Syria. Don’t think that those surgeons count as “diverse,” however. In the scientific establishment, as in all of academia, diversity at its core refers to blacks, with the other “underrepresented” minorities—American Hispanics and Native Americans—occasionally thrown in for good measure. When medical associations, medical schools, and federal agencies conduct diversity tallies (which they do obsessively), their primary concern is the proportion of blacks in medical education and practice. The American Medical Association’s chief academic officer, Sanjay Desai, is scandalized that “only” 5.7 percent of doctors identify as black, though blacks make up over 13 percent of the population. The American Society of Clinical Oncology’s March 23 bulletin complains that only 3 percent of practicing oncologists identify as black. By contrast, nearly 90 percent of hospital leadership “self-identify as White,” according to doctor Manali Patel. The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases sees a crisis for medical science in the fact that “only” 7.3 percent of full-time medical faculty come from “underrepresented backgrounds,” though those “underrepresented backgrounds” constitute 33 percent of the national population.

The team leader in the Slayman transplant, Riella, directs a kidney transplantation research lab at Mass General. Its members look like a United Nations gathering, with researchers from Turkey, Lebanon, China, Spain, Japan, and other non-U.S. countries. Though white Americans are a small minority in the Riella Laboratory, it would not count as “diverse” for purposes of science funding or political legitimacy, because it has no blacks in it. We are to believe that this absence of blacks comes from white supremacist machinations, though those backstage white supremacists didn’t do a very good job of maintaining numerical advantage in the lab. And without blacks, the Riella Laboratory has never functioned at the highest levels of scientific achievement, according to diversity thinking.

Slayman may have had a positive outcome this time, despite being treated by nonblack transplant surgeons, but other black kidney patients have no guarantee that they will be as lucky in the future. In early April, the New York Times wrote about new techniques for keeping donated organs functioning outside of a body before transplant, a process known as perfusion. The transplant doctors whom the paper quoted—Daniel Borja-Cacho (originally from Colombia), Shimul Shah, Shafique Keshavjee, and Ashish Vinaychandra Shah—also don’t resemble the members roster of a Greenwich, Connecticut, country club, circa 1955. The Times undoubtedly tried to find a black source. Its inability to do so reflects a medical ecosystem that, according to the establishment, lacks diversity and, as such, puts black lives at risk.

So medical schools, hospitals, and funders are working overtime to change the racial demographics of the medical and science professions. First job: rewrite the past. The history of medicine and science is scandalously Western and scandalously white. To be sure, the ancient Egyptians and Babylonians made early contributions in mathematics and folk medicine, and Arab and Indian cultures introduced our present number system and some rudimentary algebra. But the essence of science—the “mathematization of hypotheses about Nature,” in historian Joseph Needham’s words, coupled with hypothesis testing and controlled experimentation—sprung from ancient Greek critical thinking and gathered unstoppable momentum in early modern Europe. That great, rushing onslaught of discovery remained for centuries exclusively European—i.e., Caucasian. And that is an embarrassment. To protect medical students from the traumatic effects of that historical lack of diversity, medical schools are trying to conceal the demographic reality of what was once (but is no longer) a Western phenomenon.

A portrait of Joseph Murray used to hang in the main teaching amphitheater of Brigham and Women’s Hospital. (Murray was the Nobel-winning plastic surgeon whose organ transplant work in the 1950s and 1960s laid the groundwork for the Slayman pig kidney operation.) After the Slayman operation, the leaders of Mass General Brigham (which manages Brigham and Women’s Hospital) may have celebrated their forebears’ boundary-pushing science, but in 2018, the president of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Betsy Nabel, removed Murray’s portrait from its place of honor. Murray was not the only Brigham scientist purged from the school’s portrait gallery. Twenty-nine other paintings of the hospital’s medical giants—including trailblazing brain surgeons and pathologists—were also taken down, because, like Murray, they were offensively white. (A Chinese scientist in the portrait gallery who had slipped past the white supremacist gatekeepers was also removed, due to guilt by association.) Other components of Mass General will be repositioning now-unacceptable visual tributes to their medical past.

Yale’s Sterling Hall of Medicine contains 55 portraits of Yale’s medical luminaries. They, too, are doomed. A Yale professor and two medical students interviewed 15 other Yale medical students about those white (though not all male) faces in the Sterling Hall gallery. Seeing the portraits, the students reported, induced feelings of “discomfort and disappointment,” against which they had to implement “coping mechanisms.” Though the survey was laughably unscientific, the Journal of General Internal Medicine published it anyway in 2019, undoubtedly hoping to inspire other such polls in other medical schools. It need hardly have bothered; the defenestration movement continues apace.

The aforementioned Baruj Benacerraf actually was excluded from medical school because of his identity, unlike today’s underrepresented minority students, whose race and ethnicity secure them admission and a protective phalanx of diversity bureaucrats. As a Jew and a Venezuelan, Benacerraf was rejected from all the American medical schools he applied to, despite an excellent undergraduate record at Columbia University. Only the intercession of a family friend obtained Benacerraf a place at the Medical College of Virginia. Benacerraf certainly did not see any Jews or Latin Americans on the Medical College’s walls. Yet he managed to overcome that supposed handicap to go on to win a Nobel Prize for discovering the biochemical mechanisms behind immune response.

Erasing history is just the start in combatting medicine’s systemic racism. Standards also need to go. For decades, medical schools have admitted the bulk of their black students with scores on the medical college admissions test that would likely disqualify a white or Asian applicant. The yield was still deemed inadequate. So, some schools are waiving MCAT submission entirely for black students.

 Once in medical school, those racially preferred students flail academically. Time to change how performance is measured. In 2022, the first part of the U.S. Medical Licensing Exam, known as Step One, went pass-fail. Step One, taken after the second year of medical school, measures knowledge of human anatomy, physiology, biochemistry, and other building blocks of medical expertise. Hospitals use Step One scores to select residents. Black students on average scored so poorly on Step One that they were only infrequently landing their preferred residencies. The directors of the USMLE eliminated Step One scores so that hospitals would not be able to see where black students fell on a grading curve.

The USMLE directors did not disclose the scoring data that had prompted the change. A 1994 paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association, however, did reveal the Step One performance gap: 51.1 percent of black medical students failed Step One on their first attempt; the white failure rate was 12.3 percent. The 1994 JAMA paper would never get published today, but we have no reason to think that matters have improved since then.

Medical schools are introducing into the curriculum material in which everyone can excel. Programming on “structural racism” and the “need for a diversified workforce” is now part of a core content area, according to the academic head of the American Medical Association. A mandatory three-semester course at the University of Pennsylvania medical school, Doctoring I, looks at such topics as “race/racism in medicine,” “narratives,” and “structural competency” (the last means that, if you are white, you are structurally incompetent to give optimal care to underrepresented minorities). The Diversity Strategic Action Plan at the Case Western Reserve medical school trains faculty and students to address implicit bias and microaggressions. The DSAP was developed in response to the changing demographics of the student body, explains the school. None of these courses will help physicians diagnose obscure tumors or prescribe the proper course of drugs.

What and who gets published in scientific journals, who reviews submissions and edits articles—these decisions are now being driven by the felt need for more diverse, that is, more black, faces. An article in the March 14, 2024, edition of Nature by a professor of social policy and race at King’s College, London, complains about how “exhausting” it is to exist at the “intersection” of being black and a woman. A December 2023 article in Science announced that “racism in America is a system of oppression that produces and sustains racially unequal outcomes.” Systemic racism places “Black Americans at a compounded disadvantage even in the absence of overt discrimination,” according to the article.

The author of another 2023 Science article titled, “I’m a Black scientist, tired of facing racism and exclusion from academia,” attributed every criticism or academic disappointment the author had encountered to “systemic racism,” though she was recruited into a research laboratory because of her race. These articles, typical of the scientific press today, would not have been published even 40 years ago. Applicants for NIH grants will no longer be ranked according to their scientific expertise and the research capacities of their colleges because doing so has a disparate impact on underrepresented minorities.

As medical and science institutions lower their standards to achieve “diversity,” we are supposed to believe that doing so will have no impact on the quality of medical care or on the pace of advances in scientific research. The evidence suggests otherwise. Lower scores on Step Two of the U.S. Medical Licensing Exam correlate with higher patient mortality rates, in the case of international medical school graduates, according to a 2014 study in Academic Medicine. American medical school graduates have a higher likelihood of receiving disciplinary actions, the lower their scores on Step Two, according to a 2017 study in the same journal. Scores on the American Board of Medical Specialties certification examination are inversely correlated with the rate of severe disciplinary action.

Not just the scores on exams but the number of times medical students and doctors have to take an exam in order to pass also predict medical practice. Multiple failures on Step Three of the USMLE, for example, lead to an 11 percent greater chance of being disciplined by a state medical board for malpractice a few years out of school, according to the Federation of State Medical Boards.

Diversity lore holds that if underrepresented minorities on average perform poorly on the standardized tests, it is because the tests are biased. If the charge of bias were true, underrepresented minorities would outperform their test results. In fact, once admitted to medical school, underrepresented minorities continue to underperform. A 1987 study from the RAND Corporation found that only 48 percent of minority physicians, 80 percent of whom were black, were able to qualify as board-certified within seven years of graduating from medical school, compared with 80 percent of whites and Asians. That 48 percent who did finally pass would have retaken the certification exams multiple times. In 1996, Abigail and Stephan Thernstrom wondered whether a doctor who had to study the same material repeatedly to eke out a passing score on a licensing exam would be able to keep up with the rapid accumulation of knowledge in his specialty. The data on malpractice actions suggest not.

The medical profession is determined to cover up an unwelcome truth: it is blacks’ low average academic skill level, not the racism of gatekeepers, that prevents them from being proportionally represented in the medical profession. In 2023, only 3 percent of black high school seniors were ready for a STEM major, according to the ACT exam. The ACT defines STEM readiness as possessing a 50 percent chance of earning a B or better in first year STEM-related courses—not a high bar.

By contrast, 44 percent of Asian seniors and 20 percent of white seniors were ready for a STEM major in 2023, based on their ACT scores. The percentage of STEM-ready Asian seniors was over 14.6 times the percentage of black STEM-ready seniors. The percentage of white STEM-ready seniors was 6.6 times the percentage of black STEM ready seniors.

Based on the same 2023 ACT exam, only 8 percent of black seniors possessed the math skills that would give them a 50 percent chance of earning a B or more in a nonremedial first-year college math course, compared with 62 percent of Asians and 38 percent of white seniors.

According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, in 2019, 66 percent of all black twelfth-graders did not possess even partial mastery of basic twelfth-grade math skills, defined as being able to do arithmetic and to read a graph. Only 7 percent of black twelfth-graders were proficient in twelfth-grade math, defined as being able to calculate using ratios. The number of black twelfth-graders who were advanced in math was too small to show up statistically in a national sample. By comparison, 29 percent of white twelfth-graders were below basic in twelfth-grade math in 2019, 28 percent were proficient, and 4 percent were advanced. Twenty percent of Asian twelfth-graders were below basic in math in 2019, 37 percent were proficient, and 15 percent were advanced. These skills disparities, which have held constant for decades, mean that you can at present have diversity (defined as black proportionality) in medicine and STEM or you can have meritocracy. You cannot have both.

The durability of the diversity industry depends on concealing the academic skills gap. Anyone broaching it, even in private, will suffer professional consequences. In 1976, Bernard Davis, a professor of bacterial physiology at the Harvard medical school, published an anodyne op-ed in the Journal of the American Medical Association asking whether medical school faculties had properly balanced their “obligation to promote social justice” (through racial quotas) with their obligation to “protect the public interest” (by upholding standards of competence). (In fact, doctors have no “obligation to promote social justice.” Mastering increasingly complex scientific knowledge and properly putting it to use is doctors’ sole comparative advantage. Anything that distracts from that mission is a misallocation of resources.) A black medical student at what Davis called a “distinguished school” had failed to pass Part One of the national licensing exam despite five tries over five years. The school (which turned out to be Harvard) awarded him his medical degree anyway. Davis did not regard this as a positive development, even though “guilt over our history of enormous racial injustice” made it an understandable development, he wrote. Thanks to his guest editorial, Davis became a pariah for the remainder of his career.

The punishment for candor has only become more severe. On December 1, 2023, Peter Groeneveld sent a private email to a fellow doctor at the University of Pennsylvania medical school. Groeneveld and his colleague were codirectors of the school’s Master of Science in Health Policy program. Groeneveld was concerned, he wrote, that many “underrepresented minorities” in the program were at “high risk for struggling . . . and ultimately not finishing.” He wondered if those struggling students had been pushed into the program by external forces rather than by intrinsic interest. Groeneveld carefully couched his observation with an acknowledgment of several “superstar” minority students.

Groeneveld was not making a public statement. This was an internal email intended solely for his co-director as they prepared for a meeting of the Master of Science in Health Policy executive committee. But the email leaked and Groeneveld became the latest scapegoat for the underperformance of black students.

Groeneveld was not a likely contender for racist of the week status. Besides the MSHP program, he directed the U.S. Veterans Administration’s Center for Health Equity Research and Promotion, where he studied how new medical technologies can worsen health-care disparities between white and minority patients. Once his email became known, however, the student body erupted in a primal scream of victimhood. Groeneveld symbolized the “institutional and interpersonal racism” that keeps students from succeeding, the students thundered. The medical school immediately launched an investigation, though there was nothing to investigate. Senior Vice Dean for Clinical and Translational Research Emma Meagher emailed the students on February 21, calling Groeneveld’s comments “alarming and understandably distressing,” as if the problem were the comments and not the facts to which they alluded.

The medical school declined to sanction Groeneveld but tried to sweeten this bitter decision with the creation of new diversity booty—a new Associate Director for Diversity and Inclusion and a new associate director of student affairs. To no avail.

Whether or not MSHP students are academic stars, they are masters of rhetorical fury. One student called Senior Vice Dean Meagher’s decision not to fire Groeneveld “incredibly insensitive, tone-deaf, opaque, and caked in bias—emblematic of how deep structural racism runs and how traditional power structures benefitting certain groups continue to be upheld within this elite institution.”

The adult thought police now came out in force. On March 20, ten medical school faculty members objected to the decision to leave Groeneveld in place on the ground that the “thoughts and ideas” in his email had had “tremendous negative impacts” on underrepresented minority students and were inconsistent with the university’s “stated mission for health equity and anti-racism.” In other words, merely thinking about the problem of academic mismatch, regardless of whether you publicly communicate those thoughts, violates the sole unifying mission of today’s college campuses: antiracism.

Two weeks after Groeneveld’s email was leaked, Penn announced that he would lose the co-directorship of the MPSH program after all. In celebration, the students sent off more volleys of grandiose academic prose: “I hope this is used as an opportunity to think critically about ourselves, our positionality within our health system and community, and what we need to learn and unlearn,” one student told the Daily Pennsylvanian.

There will be no “critical thinking” about the problem over which Groeneveld lost his directorship: the underperformance of minority students. The faculty at the Penn medical school and beyond are on notice (if they had missed the memo the first, second, and third time around) that if they so much as think about that underperformance and whisper it to a colleague in confidence, they risk their own professional careers. And university leadership has again revealed itself as cravenly beholden to student narcissism.

Back in the world created by a disappearing meritocracy, Richard Slayman was released from Mass General on April 3, 2024, his pig kidney performing all the tasks expected of it. Though he did have a post-operative rejection episode in the hospital, his doctors tamped that reaction down with immunosuppressive drugs. If Slayman and the kidney continue to be compatible and the xenotransplant can be replicated in other patients, a new era of medicine will have begun.

The hundreds of thousands of scientific insights that lie behind the dawning ability to exchange a healthy animal organ for a diseased human one were the product of burning curiosity, intellectual prowess, and preternatural focus. (See this timeline for a further depiction of the evolving knowledge behind organ transplantation.) The scientists were operating in a world of pure thought and speaking a universal language, freed from the trivialities of “identity.” Yet the NIH currently seeks research applicants who were on welfare as a child or who came from a single-parent home, because those factors correlate with race. Such “life experiences,” as current diversity jargon puts it, have no bearing on the ability to understand, for example, the hyperacute rejection of a non-human organ transplant, whereby xenoreactive natural antibodies are directed against terminal carbohydrate, Gal1, and 3a-GalbGlcNAC-R, under the control of an enzyme galactosyl transferase. Hard, focused study does have a bearing on such understanding.

Scientific progress would not have gone faster or more successfully had its early contributors been swapped out for more “diverse” ones. And doing so now, when diversity is defined by the underrepresented minority quotient, will all but guarantee worse medical and scientific outcomes. Given the current skills gap, it is impossible artificially to “diversify” the scientific and medical workforce further without lowering its overall capacities. To make way for a less-qualified student, faculty prospect, or lab member, a more qualified prospect will be set aside. The passed-over candidate may get a job elsewhere, but that job may not allow him to maximize his capacities. By informal reports, scientifically gifted students who might otherwise undertake a medical career are now abjuring the profession, knowing that they will be racially discriminated against at every turn. Meantime, the unabated push to lower standards in medical admissions and credentialing means that malpractice will increase.

Though Slayman’s surgery team and the long line of researchers whose work they drew upon were not black, his nephrologist was. Winfred Williams is the founding director of the MGH Center for Diversity and Inclusion, which seeks to diversify the physician workforce through hospital-wide “diversity goals.” Not surprisingly, Williams was the only representative of Mass General who played the race card after the operation. Minority patients have “unequal access” to kidney transplant due to “system-based barriers,” he said in his press release.

That charge was unfair. The “system” is not preventing blacks from getting kidney transplants. Blacks tend to enter treatment for kidney failure at a later stage of the disease, making transplantation even more complicated than it already is. Patients must opt in to the process for determining transplant eligibility, and black patients are less likely to initiate that evaluation process. Blacks are more reluctant to have someone else’s organ transferred into their body, according to a nephrologist who has worked with patients of all races. (Slayman was obviously an exception to that tendency.) As for the higher incidence of kidney failure among blacks, behavioral and genetic factors play a dominant role, as they do in hypertension and diabetes. To deny the influence on health of exercise, weight control, and types of food eaten is as counterproductive as denying the effect of the skills gap on black underrepresentation.

Medical progress of the future is going to be ever more scientifically demanding, requiring the ability to synthesize a rapidly exploding body of knowledge and to understand mathematical modeling, nanotechnology, and other developing fields. A research lab or medical school is not the place to undertake academic remediation. The Middle Easterners, East Asians, Southeast Asians, and South Americans flooding into the science and medical professions are a testament to STEM’s colorblindness. They are a patent refutation of the charge of “white privilege.” Black patients like Richard Slayman are as much the beneficiaries of science’s erstwhile commitment to meritocracy as white patients are. And blacks will suffer as much as the rest of humanity if we replace the magnificent edifice of scientific exploration with identity-driven mediocrity.

Photo: Illustration of a xenotransplant (BSIP/Contributor/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)


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