Sunday, October 19, 2014

Let's all lose our shit about Ebola

My mom is flying up for my birthday. It will be the first time in five years that we'll be seeing each other in person. And yet, the other day she asked me, "Do you think I should cancel the trip because of Ebola?"

I sent her this chart,

and said, no, it's been completely blown out of proportion, and more people are going to die of the flu this year. Certainly, it's extremely dangerous under certain circumstances, but fear of Ebola is going to be more dangerous than actual Ebola.

I don't normally watch the President's weekly address, but a friend pointed it out to me and I thought Obama had some really salient points.

From the address:
First, what we're seeing now is not an "outbreak" or an "epidemic" of Ebola in America. We're a nation of more than 300 million people. To date, we've seen three cases of Ebola diagnosed here-the man who contracted the disease in Liberia, came here and sadly died; the two courageous nurses who were infected while they were treating him. Our thoughts and our prayers are with them, and we're doing everything we can to give them the best care possible. Now, even one infection is too many. At the same time, we have to keep this in perspective. As our public health experts point out, every year thousands of Americans die from the flu. 
Second, Ebola is actually a difficult disease to catch. It's not transmitted through the air like the flu. You cannot get it from just riding on a plane or a bus. The only way that a person can contract the disease is by coming into direct contact with the bodily fluids of somebody who is already showing symptoms. I've met and hugged some of the doctors and nurses who've treated Ebola patients. I've met with an Ebola patient who recovered, right in the Oval Office. And I'm fine.
I'm occasionally critical of Obama's presidency, but it's hard to find fault with any aspect of this address. This is what real, actual leadership looks like.

And in related news, I read this from the local news site.

Ebola scare temporarily closes Hackettstown pharmacy

From the article:
Police said they and the Hackettstown Rescue Squad responded "in reference to an ill male who was possibly showing the signs of Ebola."
"signs of Ebola".

Considering in its early stages, it's pretty indistinguishable from the flu, is it really so unusual to see someone with flu-like symptoms in a pharmacy?

Man, what the fuck is wrong with people?

I assume the EMTs are obligated to take the call, and I further assume that their response was to smack the caller upside the head, and tell him to stop wasting their time when they could be out actually helping people. 


  1. Josh blogs: "Man, what the fuck is WRONG with people?"

    I ask: Can we assume that's a rhetorical question, Josh?

    1. At the time of your reply, the number one search term for the day for finding the blog was "Free Willy Porn".

      In light of that information, I do not believe that there is any satisfactory answer to my question. There's just too much wrong with people.