The “nation’s doctor” made headlines for praising the HUD secretary and saying that he once was an “inspiring” doctor at Trump’s questionable attempt to address Black History Month at a White House reception on Tuesday. Adams, one of only two Black senior Trump administration officials, said this to the world about Carson:
“The first time I even interacted with a Black physician in college when I had the opportunity to meet Dr. Ben Carson. To see a Black man making such important contributions to the field of medicine. Dr. Carson, it lit a fire in me…If you have a chance, say thank you to him. Thank you, Dr. Carson from my heart for inspiring me and inspiring so many others.”
Adams, 42, came under some criticism on Twitter for praising Carson, who is now more noticeably known now for his disparaging statements as HUD secretary, not his years as a pioneering neurosurgeon. With the racist and divisive rhetoric from Trump, Carson and other administration officials having been nationally condemned, Adams has stood behind several controversial individuals. But exactly how did he get to the White House?
The surgeon general’s history with Vice President Mike Pence is worth noting, given that Pence vetted Adams for the job. Pence, who was previously governor of Indiana, appointed Adams, a then-anesthesiologist, to health commissioner in Indiana in 2014. Pence later lobbied for Adams to Trump to secure the surgeon general nomination last September, making Adams the second health official from Pence’s home state to join the president’s administration.
Adams, who went to Indiana University for medical school before he earned a public health master’s degree, had helped fight an HIV outbreak into Pence’s home state with a needle exchange program, CNN reported.
Aside from his abilities to lead the nation on public health matters and policies, Adams has a great opportunity to call Trump on his wrongdoing. The real question is this one: Will Adams denounce Trump’s racist rhetoric or will he only remain quiet on the errors of HUD and Trump’s administration?