Please sign my petition.

I objected to this characterization of my College and my colleagues by the ACS leadership in a post in the online discussion forum. This led to the largest comment thread in the history of the ACS. I was invited to a private conference with several ACS leaders, including the new Director of Diversity. It all seem very civil and respectful. A few weeks later I was banned for life from any further access to the discussion forums. The leadership went further in banning me from acccess to the members directory and my own private messages. They clearly saw me as a threat of some sort that needed to be silenced.

The proximate reason for my ban was that I allegedly used disrespectful language and posted non-clinical material on clinical forums, i.e. I objected to the racialization of surgery. The ACS leadership has refused to provide me with a single example of what I have posted that justifies a lifetime ban.

When I appealed to the Board of Regents, my ban was upheld. I appealed to the Head of the Central Judiciary Committee, which is responsible for disciplining Fellows of the ACS and was informed that my ban was never brought before the committee, a clear violation of the bylaws of the ACS. I was further told that, since this was not done, my lifetime ban was not truly a discipline and therefore my request for a hearing was denied, another violation of the bylaws. Think about it. A lifetime ban as punishment for alleged infractions on the discussion forums is not a disciplinary action according to ACS leaders!!!

I have exhausted all options for seeking reinstatement within the ACS. Now, I have a petition out seeking reinstatement that I hope will be signed by enough people, especially other physicians and Fellows of the ACS to prompt the ACS to reinstate my rightful privileges.

A professional organization supposedly dedicated to excellence, such as the ACS, should not be banning and silencing surgeons who speak up and express opinions contrary to the party line of the leadership especially when that party line is divisive and controversial. If there is truly racism in the ACS, in surgeons, and in surgery itself, let us identify this objectively and engage in debate and discussion on how to deal with this, openly and transparently, not behind closed doors and by banning surgeons who disagree.

I and my fellow surgeons should be free to discuss such a controversial issue among ourselves. Our patients deserve no less.

Please sign the petition at . If you are an ACS Fellow, please indicate this when you sign.

Thank you.

Richard T. Bosshardt, MD, FACS

3 Comments, RSS

  1. Connie waterman

    Thank you for stepping up & speaking out. If changes aren’t made our healthcare, hospitals, medical Procedures, surgeries, doctors, nurses, will fail us all.
    Stay strong; most people are on your side.

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