Dr. Dora-Linda Wang, author "The Kitchen Shrink," discusses diversity in New Mexico

Air Dates: May 22-24, 2021


TOPICS · Diversity in New Mexico

· Celebrating May - "Asian-America and Pacific Islander Heritage Month"

"I envision a New Mexico without racial hierarchies... New Mexico has a caste system... we have to get past that and I would encourage New Mexicans to embrace and be proud of a mixed-race heritage." – Dr. Dora Wang

May 20, 2021 -- This week's guest on REPORT FROM SANTA FE is Dr. Dora-Linda Wang, M.D., M.A, discussing diversity in New Mexico and celebrating in May the national observance of Asian-America and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

Based on her experience and training as a psychiatrist, Dr. Wang suggests that racism should be treated as a mental illness, and as a factor that causes mental illness. She evaluates the national history of racism and racist events and looks closely at New Mexico’s history of racism. She reviews racist language that was embedded in the New Mexico Constitution and in Albuquerque property deeds, and the efforts made to overturn this form of discrimination.

Dr, Wang makes a provocative case for the fact that diversity in New Mexico is not so diverse, and details the economic consequences of this, as the world enters a more global economy in the 21st Century. “I just envision a New Mexico without racial hierarchies,” Wang states.”I envision a New Mexico where New Mexicans are proud of their mixed-race heritage. And New Mexico has to stop wanting to be an outpost of Old Spain, and to move forward into the 21st century.”

Just this week, President Biden signed a bill aimed at addressing the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes. Dr. Wang serves as the president of the Caucus of Asian American Psychiatrists, under the auspices of the American Psychiatric Association (APA). She recently participated in a forum on the “Mental Health of Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders during COVID and the Rise of Xenophobia” where she discussed national incidents of anti-Asian hate which have provoked so much fear and anxiety in the Asian-American community. In the past year, since the COVID pandemic started, there have been over 4,000 reported incidents of hate crimes and attacks against Asians-Americans. Many such crimes go unreported due to the victims’ fear and shame. Dr. Wang explores the many causes and effects of these hate crimes nationally.

A graduate of the Yale School of Medicine and the UCLA Neuropsychiatric Institute, Dr. Wang has been on the faculty of the University of New Mexico (UNM) School of Medicine, training students of psychiatry since 1998. She completed an MA in English Literature from the University of California, Berkeley, with an emphasis in ethnic American literature and the history of medicine. She is the author of The Kitchen Shrink and The Daily Practice of Compassion: A History of the UNM School of Medicine…. She hosted Duke City Magazine on New Mexico GOV-TV for eight years.