A medical and health-related Twitter account posted a photo of a little girl in pink scrubs holding hands with a boy in green scrubs in a hospital hallway in the hopes that it would go viral. “This is cute, isn’t it?” the Medical Shots Twitter account asked. Little did they know the tweet would go viral for all the wrong reasons.
“The children are cute. The sexism on their backs is NOT,” responded one Twitter user.
This is cute, isn't it? 😍 pic.twitter.com/ab9YfjiExN
— Medical Shots (@TheMedicalShots) March 10, 2019
People online slammed the photo for being sexist, labeling the young girl as the “Nurse in Training” on the back of her scrubs while the boy’s scrubs read “Doctor in Training.” They argue that there shouldn’t be an assumed professional role based on the children’s gender.
Many women and female doctors were quick to point out the biased assumption that the boy would be the doctor in training instead of the young girl. “How come she’s the nurse?” asked one user.
Despite the gender roles assumed in the photo, according to a survey by health care network Athena Health, more than 60 percent of the physicians in their network are female. “Sorry, I live in a world where women can be doctors too,” another user shot back.
Other users also pointed out that the sexism goes both ways — there are plenty of “murses,” (a nickname used for male nurses) in the medical field as well, they argued. “Nope. Male nurse here,” wrote one Twitter user.
“My brother is a ‘murse’ and he’s the absolute best. PS: the doctors in our family are women,” added another. However, one female physician even criticized the kitschy nickname used to describe male nurses. “Using the word ‘murse’ is like using the phrase ‘lady doctor.’ It implies that nurse isn’t a gender neutral word,” she wrote.
In addition to slamming the assumed professional roles of the blond boy-and-girl duo, others called out the sexist pink and teal colors of the scrub as well. So, the internet decided to “fix” the photo, creating a black-and-white gender-neutral version of the image labeling both the boy and girl as “health professional[s] in training.”
See all the best reactions to the photo of the blond duo below:
— Alan (@GammaCounter) March 11, 2019
No it’s not. Why isn’t she a Dr as well? Or why is the boy not a nurse?
— Twenty-One 💋 (@21_03_90) March 10, 2019
Nope. It’s tacky and misogynistic. Delete your account.
— Carol Blymire (@CarolBlymire) March 11, 2019
How did you tweet this from the year 1950?
— Jill Tatara (@jilltataraworld) March 10, 2019
Same! My brother is a “murse” and he’s the absolute best!
PS: The doctors in our family are women.
— A Sands (@avengingmomgel) March 11, 2019
Agreed. Using the word “murse” is like using the phrase “lady doctor”. It implies that nurse isn’t a gender neutral word.
— Lexie Mannix, MD (@ALMannixMD) March 11, 2019
Sorry, I live in a world where women can be doctors too. pic.twitter.com/1nHOGkmrlx
— Andrea Marie (@DaniPayson) March 10, 2019