In the last 6 years spent researching my autoimmune disease and others, I have learned that what is known as autoimmune disease is not well understood by capitalistic patriarchal medicine. Just saying those words puts a shiver down my spine because since when does capitalism and patriarchy tell the truth about anything, especially anything that regular people could use to better understand their world and their station, and especially any information that regular people, especially women, could potentially use to better their own lives? They say they don’t understand the cause of autoimmune disease, and that that’s why they also can’t seem to find a cure; they also can’t offer any advice for what to avoid that may potentially cause or trigger it, things you shouldn’t be exposed to, conditions you should never endure, but “stopping doing” or “not doing” or “avoiding doing” is anti-capitalist and anti-consumerist at base. Of course they would never tell us what to avoid doing so that we were never struck down by a crippling incurable progressive disease, and definitely not one that’s so, so profitable.
Whether they know or not really isn’t my point or my concern since there’s nothing we can do to find out if they don’t want us to, but it does make room, I think, to think outside the box and consider more radical possibilities when in fact all possibilities remain on the table. Big Pharma and Big Medicine playing dumb or being dumb opens doors to radical theorizing about the possible origins and causes of our diseases because we know we need to start from the beginning. Anymore, I just naturally assume everything we “know” and don’t know about disease is a lie. And in the case of autoimmune disease, Big Medicine likes to say that it’s a dysfunction or misfiring of the immune system — that “for some reason” the immune response “mistakes” healthy and native tissue for diseased tissue or pathogens and starts erroneously attacking it with white blood cells, fever, inflammation and the like, in order to kill it.
In the case of Crohn’s disease, “something” is indeed seriously damaging if not killing my tissues and this has been demonstrated on scopes where I have been found to be housing countless aphthous ulcers in my small intestine and ileum as well as chronic inflammation (as far as I know there is no necrosis, and I assume I would know if there were). But I think the claim that my or anyone’s immune system, which have evolved over millenia and seem to have been successful to date have made a mistake carries a large burden of proof, and so far I have not seen the proof. And particularly in the case of women, who comprise the majority of autoimmune disease patients, and where capitalistic patriarchal medicine has long assumed that female bodies were defective and “doing ‘body’ wrong” as compared to men and male bodies, the suggestion that it is our female bodies which are defective and mistaken is absolutely suspect.