Mark L. Rosenberg
Mark L. Rosenberg (born 1945) is an American physician and public health researcher who is the current president and CEO of the Task Force for Global Health, where he began working in 1999. He is also on the faculty at Morehouse School of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine, and the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. He previously worked at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), where he helped oversee research on gun violence through the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC).
Rosenberg received his undergraduate degree, as well as degrees in public policy and medicine, at Harvard University. He completed a residency in internal medicine and a fellowship in infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital, a residency in psychiatry at the Boston Beth Israel Hospital, and a residency in preventive medicine at CDC.
Career at the CDC
Rosenberg worked at the CDC for 20 years, where he was instrumental in founding the NCIPC. He also served as the first permanent director of the NCIPC beginning in 1994. While there, he was responsible for overseeing gun violence research at the CDC prior to the enactment of the 1996 Dickey Amendment, the Congressional restriction which prevented the CDC from using its funding "to advocate or promote gun control," in 1996. Specifically, advocates of the restrictions referred to comments Rosenberg made in 1994: in a Washington Post article, he was quoted as saying “We need to revolutionize the way we look at guns, like we did with cigarettes. Now it [sic] is dirty, deadly and banned.” The same year Dr. Katherine Christoffel, head of the CDC funded Handgun Epidemic Lowering Plan, said in an interview with American Medical News "guns are a virus that must be eradicated...." In the same interview Rosenberg concurred with Christoffel, saying "...she’s not willing to be silent anymore. She’s asking for help.”
For his part, Rosenberg has been highly critical of this restriction, saying in 2012 that the National Rifle Association (which lobbied Congress to enact this restriction) has "terrorized" the scientific community. He has also said this restriction has impaired researchers' ability to understand the problem of gun violence, saying in 2015 that “Because we don’t know what works, we as a country are left in a shouting match.”
In a 2016 article in The Atlantic on the impact of the Dickey Amendment, Rosenberg says: “It was the leadership of CDC who stopped the agency from doing gun violence research ... Right now, there is nothing stopping them from addressing this life-and-death national problem." As the article notes this assertion runs counter to the "conventional wisdom" of the Dickey Amendment "as blocking the agency [i.e. the CDC] from conducting research on firearms deaths and injuries."
Honors and awards
In 1995, Rosenberg was elected a member of the Institute of Medicine. He has also received the Outstanding, Meritorious, and Distinguished Service Medals, and the Surgeon General’s Exemplary Service Medal.
- "Mark Rosenberg". Task Force for Global Health. Archived from the original on 22 January 2016. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- "Biographies". Institute of Medicine. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- Strassmann, Mark (17 January 2013). "NRA, Congress stymied CDC gun research budget". CBS News. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- Bell, Larry. "Why The Centers For Disease Control Should Not Receive Gun Research Funding". Forbes.
- Pearson, Erica (29 May 2014). "NRA lobbying led to law that stopped CDC from using federal funds to study gun violence". New York Daily News. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- Singal, Jesse (23 December 2015). "What the CDC Could Learn About Gun Violence If the NRA Allowed It to Research the Subject". New York Magazine. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
- Masters, Kate (April 5, 2016). "Why Did the CDC Stop Researching Gun Violence?". The Atlantic. Retrieved February 21, 2018.
... experts assert that while the Dickey Amendment placed constraints on the agency, it did not ban the study of gun violence outright.
- "Mark L. Rosenberg, M.D." Institute of Medicine. Retrieved 17 January 2016.