Howard University Med Students Petition Bravo To Cancel “Married To Medicine”
Med students from Howard University College Of Medicine started a Change.org petition to urge Bravo to cancel a new reality show, “Married To Medicine.” The reality TV program set to debut on March 24 portrays the ups-and-downs for black women doctors and doctors’ wives/socialites in Atlanta.
According to Bravo’s web site, the show only features two black women who are doctors: Dr. Jacqueline Waters and Dr. Simone Whitmore, who are both OBGYNs. The other stars of the show are all doctors’ wives — from various ethnic backgrounds — who work, raise children and do volunteer work.
“Married To Medicine” looks to have the same charity-attending-ball-gown-wearing-wine-glass-throwing subplots as other Bravo reality shows, albeit with an inside peek at the world of medicine (as well as what goes on at home). And that’s why Change.org petitioners want it canceled.
According to the petition:
Black female physicians only compose 1 percent of the American workforce of physicians. Due to our small numbers, the depiction of Black female doctors in media, on any scale, highly affects the public’s view on the character of all future and current African American female doctors. Bravo’s “Married to Medicine” not only exploits the 6 lives of its Black female cast members, but, through its advertisements and commercials, heavily associates Black females in medicine with materialism, “cat fights”, and unprofessionalism.
The petition requests Bravo cancel the program “for the sake of integrity and character of black female physicians” over concern that the depiction of these women onscreen and their association with medicine will hinder black women in their careers.
I’m sympathetic to the Change.org petition because I don’t trust that Bravo’s crack team of video editors won’t exploit the content of “Married To Medicine” to portray the usual “ratchet TV” stereotypes. But if I’m being honest, I also think this show doesn’t sound that bad — and on the contrary, maybe even interesting or a little inspiring. Female doctors are a fresh topic for reality TV and problematic as reality TV may be, I’d be more interested in watching the adventures of doctors than watching more of anyone’s “wives.”