Even President Trump has noticed. “Why is it that the African American community is so much, you know, numerous times more than everybody else?” he asked on Tuesday, adding: “It doesn’t make sense, and I don’t like it.”But the answer to Trump’s question is obvious: Black people are at the mercy of everything that is flawed and dysfunctional about America’s health-care system, which has long been shaped by racism.Decades of research show the ways that racism produces a rigged system that drives disparities in health outcomes across lifetimes and generations. Higher levels of discrimination and bias are associated with elevated risk of a broad range of diseases, from higher levels of stress hormones, to blood pressure, to obesity and early death. All of those underlying conditions put people at higher risk for bad outcomes from covid-19.It doesn’t take “a very stable genius” to connect black people’s higher rates of unemployment, mass incarceration, chronic preexisting medical issues, poor housing, homelessness and less reliable access to quality health care to see why they’re more vulnerable to increased viral transmission, infection and death during a pandemic. Black people are also less likely to work in the kinds of jobs that will continue to


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