A father and a son were in a car accident. The father went home to rest. The son was taken to the hospital for minor surgery. The surgeon came in and said: "I can't operate on this boy because he's my son." How is this possible?As children of the '60s we went through all sorts of lateral thinking solutions before we got to that one: he was adopted and the doctor was his real father; the man in the car wasn't really his father but his grandfather; his father had a twin brother; he'd been abducted by aliens. A woman surgeon was the very last thing we thought of.
Answer: The surgeon was his mother.
I'm frankly dismayed by the number of women students of medicine who still automatically and consistently employ the personal pronoun "he" when referring to a doctor and the strange thing is that there are more young women studying medicine than men.
But perhaps it's not all that surprising really when one of the major publishers of medical textbooks is using the image on the front cover of its current catalogue:
The message is clear if stylized: doctors are intelligent men with square jaws who look down on admiring little nurses.
While we're on the subject, has anyone else been reading Dr Crippen's ongoing diatribe against specialist nurses? I don't live in the UK and I have no experience of specialist nurses and I'm more than willing to believe that the National Health Service is slowly being flushed down the toilet, and that the usurpation by specialist nurses of some of the power traditionally held by doctors is somehow part of that process. I refuse, however, to swallow his elitist guff about a group of specialist nurses:
This gaggle of well-meaning women have neither the training nor the intellectual capacity to understand what is going on, and are incapable of making judgements.Despite Dr Crippen's protestations to the contrary, that to me is sexist language. What do you think?
Today, 8th March, has been declared blog against sexism day. That was my contribution.