The saga of Houston doctor Hasan Gokal is an important reminder of just how far adherents to the racial obsession of “equity” will go to ruin someone’s life. Rambo Islas, 8 months, is held by his mother Maria Islas, as he gets a shot for a vaccine administered by RN, Nicole Ives at the Dallas County Health & Human Services immunization clinic in Dallas on Friday, March 8, 2019. (Vernon Bryant/AP)
How a Texas county, in the name of vaccine ‘equity,’ tried to destroy a doctor’s life
Zachary Faria July 01, 04:13 PM July 01, 04:13 PM
The saga of Houston doctor Hasan Gokal is an important reminder of just how far adherents to the racial obsession of “equity” will go to ruin someone’s life.
After a vial of a COVID-19 vaccine was opened in December, Gokal had six hours to find 10 eligible people to administer the doses before the safe usability expired. He did just that. A Pakistani immigrant, Gokal called people in his contact list, hoping they were eligible or that they had neighbors or family members who were. He administered the final dose, 30 minutes before it expired, to his wife with pulmonary sarcoidosis after his final contact canceled.
After filing the appropriate paperwork, Gokal was fired by the Harris County Public Health Department for violating protocol. The department said the vaccines should have been wasted (!) rather than distributed. (Gokal says that in his time at the department, they were told otherwise.) More troubling, Gokal was questioned over the lack of equity in the people he vaccinated.
Worse, Gosal was then targeted by the Harris County district attorney. All because he violated the sacrosanct principle of “equity.”
Gokal’s alleged crime was that there were too many Indian names in the group he vaccinated. This is what he says he was told when he was fired. And the use of “crime” here is not an overstatement: Democrat Kim Ogg, the Harris County district attorney, charged him with “stealing” a vial of the vaccine in January this year, shortly after he was fired.
No one from Ogg’s office reached out to Gokal before he was charged to get his version of events. He had violated no written protocols. During a public health crisis, he distributed doses of a vaccine that were about to expire. The Texas Medical Association and the Harris County Medical Society voiced their support for him. A criminal court judge dismissed the case days later for lack of probable cause.
It didn’t matter. Ogg’s office continued to try to destroy him. Only now, 160 days after Ogg’s crusade against him began, a grand jury put an end to it by declining to indict Gokal.
There is no excuse for any of this. Gokal said he called a Harris County public health official in charge of operations to get the green light to make sure those doses weren’t wasted. He told his supervisors and colleagues what he did and filed the appropriate paperwork. He did what any reasonable doctor would. This never resembled “stealing” a vaccine. This was a witch hunt influenced by the sanctification of “equity.”
Gokal is owed an apology by the Harris County Public Health Department and the district attorney’s office. Ogg should be run out of politics. And the rest of us should remember this is what happens when the racial obsession of equity governs how our society operates.
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