Avoid the Party Doctors—Both

On too many days and in too many ways, we as a nation can’t talk about politics anymore—we can’t find a common ground. A real incivility has taken hold in America.

To listen well is as powerful a means of communication and influence as to talk well.

—John Marshall

During a recent visit to see my daughter at her college in New York City, we got the chance to talk a little civics. For those who don’t recall—civics was what politics used to be known as before it went off the rails.

On too many days and in too many ways, we as a nation can’t talk about politics anymore—we can’t find a common ground. A real incivility has taken hold in America. I fear for the Republic, now more than ever. But what I treasure about my daughter (and there’s a boatload to be proud of with her) is that we can talk about politics, even when we don’t agree, and it feels like civics. We really look forward to the discussions.

She listens to my points, I listen to her points and we seek out common ground or we agree to disagree. We also require that each person makes reasoned arguments, not emotional ones. She’s changed my mind about some things and I trust that I have changed hers about others. No matter what, there’s a mutual respect and a love of vigorous debate too.

Fundamentally, we agree that you can’t have a right to do what is wrong, that hard work pays off, and that having dreams brings joy.

So how might doctors vote in the upcoming presidential race? I suggest they don’t. I have decided not to cast a ballot in the 2016 US presidential race. With these two candidates, it’s not a choice, it’s a punishment.

For sure, I’ll still go to the polls on Election Day (as it happens, it’s my daughter 21st birthday on November 8) and vote on the down-ballot races. In New Jersey, there are serval important state legislative, county, and local races to be decided. And at that level things haven’t gotten quite so bad—yet!

In conclusion on politics, Yale University is out with a large new study on physicians and their politics. While the overall picture shows the medical profession is splitt evenly about 50% Democrat/50% Republican, there are some variations among medical specialties.

The following medical specialties have the highest percentage of doctors who are registered Republicans:

Surgery — 67&

Anesthesiology — 65%

Urology — 62%

ENT — 61%

Radiology — 59%

Ophthalmology — 57%

Physical Therapy/Rehabilitation — 54%

Dermatology — 53%

Family Medicine — 52%

Emergency medicine — 51%

The following medical specialties have the lowest percentage of doctors who are registered Republicans:

Infectious disease — 23%

Psychiatry — 24%

Pediatrics — 32%

Geriatrics — 37%

Endocrinology — 40%

Neurology — 40%

Internal medicine — 41%

Pathology — 42%

Nephrology — 43%

Oncology — 43%