Richard Hanania Profile picture
Jul 14 39 tweets 15 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Why care about merit? What harm is there in affirmative action programs that reward the less qualified?

Here's the story of the Martin Luther King Jr/Drew Medical Center (King/Drew) in Los Angeles, which operated from 1972 to 2007.

Or as patients called, it "Killer King." 🧵 Image
The hospital was founded in 1972, in response to black riots of the late 1960s. Elites in LA, like elsewhere in the country, determined that racism was the cause of pathologies in the black community.

Therefore they decided to open up a hospital to serve locals. Image
Officially, as a public institution, it couldn't be a "black hospital." But most employees and administrators were black, and it was said to belong to the community.

California schools practiced massive affirmative action at the time, and graduates would go work at King/Drew. Image
Problems appeared right away.

In 1975, the LA Times reported on "horror stories implying neglect and incompetence."

Employees were said to be drunk on the job or on drugs stolen from the hospital pharmacy.

A letter from a nurse in 1977 gave it the moniker of Killer King. Image
Nothing was done for decades.

It took an LA Times report in 2004 to reveal how things had gotten.

According to one accreditor, the hospital had "problems of orders of magnitude that are substantially greater than almost all other hospitals in this country." Image
King/Drew spent $20.1 million on malpractice payouts from 1999-2004. Adjusting for the number of patients it saw, this was the worst figure of any hospital in the entire state of California. Image
Patients would come in with minor medical issues and end up dead.

Locals would run away from ambulances in order not to be brought to Killer King.

Police officers had an understanding that if their colleagues were shot, they would not allow them to be taken there. Image
Once, a nine year-old daughter of Guatemalan immigrants was hit by a car. She had minor scrapes and a few broken teeth, and her parents thought should would be out before long.

But the girl wouldn't survive Killer King. Image
First, they gave her enough sedative to sedate a grown man.

They then needed to hook her up to a ventilator, but the settings were wrong.

She was starved of oxygen, and then for unclear reasons a doctor had her breathing tube removed.

Staff failed to monitor her condition. Image
The girl was soon brain dead and had to be taken off of life support.

The family settled with the hospital for $195,000, and as of 2004 was planning to build an alter at her grave in Guatemala. Image
In 1992, a sheriff's deputy was taken to the hospital with four gunshot wounds. Joking with nurses when he arrived, he was dead two days later. The surgeon had given him a lethal combination of heart drugs. Image
In 1994, a woman went to Killer King for a hysterectomy. She got a blood transfusion that had tested positive for AIDS, but nobody had bothered to check.

The hospital tried to discourage a doctor from letting her know, but he did anyway.
Community activists complained that King/Drew didn't have enough funding.

In fact, it got more funding per patient than the other three general hospitals in Los Angeles County.
Where did that money go? Overpaid employees, many of which became famous for their creative disability claims.

"Between April 1994 and April 2004, employees filed 122 chair-fall claims at King/Drew."

The hospital spent $3.2 on claims of employees falling out of chairs alone. Image
Once, a cashier was getting married. Her supervisor found out that she hadn't been asked to a bridesmaid.

The supervisor got mad, and the cashier said this gave her stress.

Killer King paid the cashier $216,000 on that claim. Image
A male nurse was tending to a semi-conscious patient having a leg operation. 20 minutes in the surgery, he reported being slugged in the back by a female colleague who knocked him to the floor.

King/Drew was expected to pay him more than $500,000 for back and neck injuries. Image
It wasn't just the lower level staff. The nueroscience chief made $1 over two years. He appeared to do few surgeries, publish few papers, and got paid for times he wasn't at the hospital.

Once, he reported working 26 hours in a day, after spending 6.5 hours at the hospital.
In five years, Killer King spent nearly $34 million on employee injuries. That was more than any of the University of California medical centers, some of which were two or three times its size. Image
LA Times in 2004: "Some employees habitually fail to show up, logging weeks, even months, of unexcused absences each year. And those who do come to work often don't do their jobs, causing one consultant in 2002 to remark that they had 'retired in place.'" Image
"King/Drew pays its ranking doctors lavishly. Some draw twice what their counterparts make at other public hospitals - often for doing less. Eighteen King/Drew physicians earned more than $250,000 in the last fiscal year, including their academic stipends. Harbor-UCLA had nine" Image
In the hallways of Killer King, employees would sell peanuts and bootleg DVD.

Patients would sit in their hospital beds, being ignored as hospital staff sat out in the hallways talking about parties they'd been to and the movies they'd seen. Image
Once, a nurse ordered a janitor aide's to mix up IV medication for a critically ill patient.

According to Civil Service records, the janitor aide's job only required him to recognize "a limited number of two- and three-syllable words."

The nurse lost her license. Image
One resident, Warren Lemons, was fired when he couldn't get licensed in California

Later, he was found barricaded in a room with a deaf-mute patient. Lemons had baby oil and soft restraints

When he was later arrested for killing a man, police found videos of naked male patients Image
A 28 year-old man died when the nurse who was supposed to be watching him had silenced the alarm on his vital-signs monitor.

She also falsified his medical charts, claiming that he was in stable condition an hour after he had died. Image
Why was nothing ever fixed? Remember, the hospital was called "Killer King" in 1977, and it lasted 40 more years after that, until 2007. You won't be surprised to learn that community activists denounced those who tried to do anything as racists.
When LA County met to discuss closing the trauma center, Maxine Waters organized a demonstration that included Jesse Jackson, and grabbed the microphone as she took control of the meeting. Politicians were cowed into silence for decades. Image
One influential activist warned against a "Latino takeover" of the hospital, called the head of the county health department the "grand wizard," and referred to police as pigs. Image
Over time, the surrounding community became more Hispanic. Many of them illegal immigrants, they were generally unwilling to assert themselves.

Some already expected hospitals to do things like operate on the wrong leg, so they didn't see anything surprising at King/Drew. Image
Nonetheless, the LA Times won a Pulitzer Prize for reporting on what was happening at Killer King in 2004. Under increasing pressure, the hospital was finally shut down in 2007.

In 2015, it was replaced at the same site by the MLK Community Hospital, a $200 million building. Image
While still serving the black community, the new hospital appears to have much lower ambitions than King/Drew. As of 2017, it didn't have a trauma center and avoiding hiring specialists or treating the most difficult cases. It focused on basic preventative and primary care. Image
Having learned nothing, since 2020 California schools have been announcing new DEI initiatives. We'll see what happens after the SCOTUS decision.

King/Drew shows what happens when you bring DEI staff together in one place. The problem is less noticeable when you spread them out
Everywhere you look in the medical system, once you let some people in through AA, you have to lie about everything.

In 2015, blacks were 5% of residents, but 20% of those kicked out of medical school. 2% of whites studying surgery were dismissed, and 12% of blacks.

From 2003-2013, the Medical Board of California reports that blacks were 2.7% of doctors but received 4.4% of complaints, among those whose race we know. Numbers are also bad for other groups that get AA.…
See here for the Pulitzer Prize winning reporting from the LA Times on Killer King. In 2020, the LA Times apologized for its previously racially insensitive coverage, so we're unlikely to see many reports like this again.…
The diversity ideology poisons everything it touches in a vicious cycle.

Incompetent doctors, race baiting politicians intimidating those who know better and protecting failed institutions. Now, a press that has become more openly committed to covering up inconvenient facts.
This is a reminder that, behind the statistics you see on racial realities and the harms of DEI ideology, there are real costs in terms of health, public safety, and ultimately the functioning of our civilization.

Let the memory of Killer King remain as a testament to that.
I’m going to do a series on these, so follow in order to keep up to date. Trust me, there are many more Killer Kings out there in practically all areas of American life.
UPDATE: I just found out that the reputation of Killer King was such that it made its way into a 1991 Ice Cube song.

🎵Woke up in the back of a trey
On my way to MLK
That's the county hospital, jack, ha
Where n*ggas die over a little scratch 🎵…
Its reputation for ignoring patients was well known. Next verse, they make Ice Cube fill out forms while coughing up blood.

🎵 Sittin' in the trauma center
In my back is where the bullet entered
"Yo, nurse, I'm gettin' kinda warm"
Bitch still made me fill out the fuckin' form🎵 Image

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Richard Hanania

Richard Hanania Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @RichardHanania

Nov 27
Some people say that Israel should fight a less aggressive war to avoid creating more terrorists.

This view reflects a deep misunderstanding of the conflict and Palestinian society. If anything the opposite is more likely to be true.

Here's why🧵…
There are three models you can have of Palestinian hate of Israelis

1. Linear: Oppression goes up, hatred increases
2. Logarithmic: Same as 1 but rises more slowly after a certain level
3. "Lose Hope": It is hope of victory that inspires them.

Which is likely to be true here?
Which model you adopt determines what you think a smart Israeli response to October 7 looks like. If you have a Linear Model, fighting an aggressive war is self-defeating. If you think Palestinian hatred can't get much worse, you might as well destroy their ability to make war.
Read 21 tweets
Nov 26
Ethan Watters, Crazy Like Us is on how westerners exported our ideas about mental illness across the world.

Western psychiatry treats mental illness like physical illness, universal, but the human mind is influenced by memes. By talking about mental illnesses, you create them🧵
A girl died of an eating disorder in Hong Kong. In response, the government and media went around "raising awareness" about the disease and relying on western experts to understand it. As a result, one study showed a 25x increase in eating disorders.
After Sri Lanka was hit by a tsunami, western "trauma experts" came and told them to stop relying on their religious traditions and communities. The society dealt with a parent's passing by telling kids they moved away, westerners demanded they tell them their parents are dead.

Read 11 tweets
Nov 19
Reminder that Nayib Bukele single handedly brought down the crime rate in #ElSalvador but instead of admitting it, the media made up a bunch of excuses: "it was going down anyway", "he made deals with the gangs," etc

Here's why that's all nonsense.…
"Vox complains that there aren’t enough public defenders in El Salvador to advocate on behalf of all the accused criminals. Should a country therefore let gangs roam free until it sets up a few more law schools and finds enough money in the budget to hire the new graduates?" Image
Yes it the muder rate was declining for a few years before Bukele took power. Note that should sometimes happen by chance! But going by recent history, it should've gone back up again. Bukele got the murder rate down to unthinkable levels. Image
Read 4 tweets
Oct 14
Washington Post: "A trans woman joined a sorority. Then her new sisters turned on her."

They're portraying a 300+ pound man who wants to shower with women as being bullied by them.

How can you mock this? What joke could add to this article?…

"How's it going, fellow sisters?" Image
My God, how tall is this person? They include these photos and don't realize what a laughingstock it makes it. The trans thing is an assault on the human senses, you join the cult you become unable to see or hear what's in front of you. Image
Read 7 tweets
Oct 6
Whatever happened to American governance? The US used to pride itself on merit-based selection in federal hiring. Government wasn't always seen as the incompetent monstrosity it is today

🧵on how the war on incompetence was originally won, and how civil rights changed everything
Over the course of 19th century, government hiring was based on patronage. Whoever won elections would hire their supporters.

The reputation of the government was so low, it was said that in a congressional report that jobs went to only adventurers, incompetents, and scoundrels.
After President Garfield was killed by a disappointed office seeker in 1881, Congress finally had enough.

It passed the Civil Service Reform Act, which required competitive examinations in hiring and banned drunks from office. By 1900, it covered nearly half the gov workforce. Image
Read 15 tweets
Sep 26
New form of equality is here. The year after BLM, 94% of over 300,000 S&P100 jobs went to non-whites.
Wow, blacks and Hispanics really knocking it out of the park with “less senior” roles.

If you’re a white guy trying to get your foot in the door, good luck. Image
Check out Nike. They’re shedding white employees like they’re lepers.
Read 7 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Don't want to be a Premium member but still want to support us?

Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!


0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy


3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!