Oprah‘s got a new project that addresses racial disparities in healthcare and COVID … something she believes definitely isn’t over, and which has been somewhat forgotten.
The media mogul spoke with LA Times to plug her new documentary, “The Color of Care,” which is debuting this weekend on the Smithsonian Channel … and she opened up A LOT about racism, healthcare, celebrity privilege, mask mandates and what one might characterize as COVID amnesia … especially relating to those who’ve died in the pandemic.
First off, she discussed putting a spotlight on what POC, particularly those living in relative poverty, have had to deal with navigating the healthcare system these past 2 years … and how she believes race has had much to do with them getting the cold shoulder.
Then, Oprah got personal with her own history … acknowledging that she’s been afforded an enormous amount of access and priority as a well-known person throughout her life.
She says that’s actually one of the best perks of being famous … being able to get the best of whatever you need anytime something is wrong. And, yet — she explains that one time in the mid-2000s, she had a thyroid problem that was misdiagnosed by multiple doctors, whom she suggests didn’t want to find what was really wrong with her out of fear of her fame.
When she did go to a thyroid specialist, she claims the guy told her to “embrace hunger,” otherwise she’d gain a lot of weight. Some say that speaks to the fatphobia that permeates this country — but big picture, O says that even the medical establishment is deeply flawed … and advocates for folks to get multiple opinions, and to have a support system with you.
On the issue of masks … Oprah says she still very much supports wearing them, even at this point … saying it’s too soon in her mind, but that she respects those who wanna ditch it.
Finally, Oprah spoke about the idea that we as a society seem to have glossed over the many COVID deaths we’ve endured … saying, “I don’t recognize a country where you’ve lost nearly a million people and there hasn’t been some form of remembering that is significant. Not at the opening of a speech or mentioning in a State of the Union.”
She believes there should be some sort of formal communal gathering specifically for this, adding … “Who are we that we don’t recognize the significance of that acknowledgment?”