Statement by Project 21’s Archbishop Council Nedd II on Jesse Jackson’s Attempt to Inject Race Into Ebola Discussion

Washington, D.C.Project 21’s Archbishop Council Nedd II of the Episcopal Missionary Church has the following response to Jesse Jackson’s effort to inject race into the discussion about the treatment of Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan:

For Jesse Jackson to suggest that Ebola victim Thomas Eric Duncan might not have gotten the best treatment because of his race is wholly unnecessary and extremely unhelpful. With the nation potentially on the verge of a national health crisis, injecting race into this very emotional issue can only hurt when our nation needs to be unified.

In 2009, I was one of the first people in America to suffer from H1N1 swine flu, having contracted it during a visit to Spain. My doctor initially refused to believe I had swine flu because no one else in Pennsylvania had it at the time, but it was later confirmed when those around me were later diagnosed with it. Doctors in Dallas were obviously not expecting an Ebola patient to show up at their door, but once Duncan was properly diagnosed and quarantined he reportedly received the best care possible. Even Jackson admitted that fact. My misdiagnosis was not rooted in race, and I can’t believe Thomas Eric Duncan’s was either.

On missionary work in Middle East and Africa, I have seen the devastation that untreated disease can cause. I understand the mental and physical toll that may befall the American people if we were to suffer from an outbreak of a contagious and very deadly virus. We need to be ready to work together and not distrust each other.

There was no need for Jesse Jackson to insert himself into the Ebola crisis in the first place. It further cements his reputation as a media-craving race hustler, and it diminishes any good work he has done in the past for civil rights. It’s time for Jackson to retire from public life.

In 2014, members of the Project 21 black leadership group have been interviewed or cited by media over 1,500 times, including TVOne, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Orlando Sentinel, Fox News Channel, CNN, Westwood One, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, SiriusXM satellite radio, Conservative Commandos and 50,000-watt talk radio stations such as WBZ-Boston, WJR-Detroit and KDKA-Pittsburgh, on issues that include civil rights, entitlement programs, the economy, race preferences, education and corporate social responsibility. Project 21 has participated in cases before the U.S. Supreme Court regarding race preferences and voting rights and defended voter ID laws at the United Nations. Its volunteer members come from all walks of life and are not salaried political professionals.

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