Prescribing Political Racism

April 2, 2010

Florida urologist Jack Cassell doesn’t want to treat 69,438,983 Americans. “If you voted for Obama. . . seek urologic care elsewhere,” reads a sign outside Cassell’s office in Mount Dora, reported the Orlando Sentinel, a newspaper I helped edit for much of my adult life.

Think of how shunning Obama backers could spread. When I next visit Orlando to see family, will restaurants owned by Republican zealots refuse to serve me? But this is about something much larger. Cassell is expressing revulsion for 52% of those who voted because of our political views. The revulsion is so rabid that the doctor prefers not to talk to us, not to touch us, not to treat us. For a change, a racial minority isn’t facing discrimination but rather a racially diverse majority.

Let me be the first to coin a word for this practice of avoiding, at all costs, fellow citizens who disagree politically with Republicans: Cassellism. I can already see bumper stickers, such as Proud To Be A Cassellist! and I ♥ Cassell.

A Cassellist version of the modern Hippocratic Oath is also inevitable:

I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow beings McCain voters. . . May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling, and may I long experience the joy of healing those Republicans who seek my help.