This morning I got an email from AMA President Patrice Harris, which said:
The AMA is pressing the President and his administration to use all levers to help you on the front lines, including an urgent appeal to use the Defense Production Act to immediately increase the domestic production of PPE, medical supplies and equipment.
We are teaming up with the American Hospital Association and American Nursing Association to get financial assistance for physicians and to urge the public to STAY HOME.What immediately struck me was how short her list of allies was: AMA, AHA, and ANA are important, but it is clear that we need to go into this fight for a moral response to the pandemic with much more power. Why isn't the Poor People's Campaign listed as an ally in the fight to save the lives of our health care professional? One consequence of the inexcusable mismanagement of this epidemic will be the deaths of doctors, nurses, x-ray technicians, respiratory therapists and others who have responded to the moral calling of their professions, but without adequate back-up from the nation.
We have to be acting in a moral manner if we are going to ask them to do so.
Reverend William Barber, who is a leader of the Poor People's Campaign developed the seminal idea of the moral fusion coalition while serving as President of the NAACP in North Carolina. He observed that there were many small and siloed organizations fighting for justice, each with its own issue. He asked them to come together, recognizing that they had different issues but a common enemy. Together those small groups formed the powerful "Moral Monday Movement." It is an important truth in American history that great victories have been won by coalitions. The moral fusion coalition is the coalition we need at this moment to fight for us to be on the right side of history.
What are the demands of a moral response to the pandemic?
Who are the organizations that will join this moral fusion coalition?