Campaign stretches health privacy limits


In light of Hillary Clinton’s recent health scare at the 9/11 Memorial site’s 15-year observation, there has been increased pressure on the presidential nominees to release their medical records.

In an effort to promote the transparency both candidates speak so frequently on, both Donald Trump and Clinton have both made some degree of information regarding their health public.

While it is interesting to note Trump’s slight battle with obesity and his genetic link to Alzheimer’s, and Hillary’s bout of pneumonia and previous blood clots; elected official or not, would you want your medical records made public for the world to judge?

Although the health and medical condition of our elected officials is essential in regards to their capacity to handle their position, it is similarly important to preserve their right to privacy and individual liberty as human beings and, despite their status, I believe matters of health are quite personal.

“Trump plays chicken on health records” read the headline of the Sept. 15 Time Magazine politics page. While the headline mockingly accuses Trump of being scared to release the one-page medical report done by his physician, Harold Bornstein, Trump did in fact make his medical records public on Wednesday, Sept. 14 during a taping of “The Dr. Oz Show.”

The issue has now become the extent to which he has informed the public, as Trump’s one-page summary was not an extensive review of his health.

CNN’s Brian Stelter and MJ Lee refer to Trump as a “master showman,” claiming that “the TV appearance gives the appearance of transparency, but the summary by Bornstein will fall far short of experts’ calls for detailed information about Trump’s health and medical history.”

The New York Times agreed, stating that “the information Mrs. Clinton has made public is more extensive than the details and assessments” given by Trump’s physician, Bornstein. Although Clinton’s records can be deemed as more “extensive”, her physician, Lisa Bardack, failed to include basic information such as her weight and height.

CNN also refers to Bornstein as “hyperbolic,” in saying that, if elected, Trump would be the healthiest president in history and, according to The New York Times, David Plouffe, a former senior adviser to President Obama, tweeted that the Republican nominee would rival William Howard Taft in terms of portliness.

While I am not a supporter of Donald Trump, nor his campaign or policies, I am a firm believer in morality and The Golden Rule. I don’t think that is appropriate to weight-shame, and I think we’ve witnessed a slight double standard; would Plouffe have made the comment if the Republican nominee was an obese woman?

I don’t think so.

So, more importantly, Mr. Trump … where are your income tax records?