Few doctors are following in the footsteps of physicians who crusaded for social causes in the early 20th century, according to a University of Rochester historian and expert in the history of medicine.
"One reason why physicians are no longer as public-spirited as they once were is that society has become less political," says Theodore Brown. "As political energy has declined, so too has social activism by doctors."Americans also cling to the belief that science and technology can solve all our problems, he adds. "We have lost much of our former will to work directly for social and political ends."