And what a scary world it is. Just when you don’t think things can get any worse – that when it seems as though we as American citizens have enough challenges to juggle – hemorrhagic fever with an alarmingly high fatality rate has come knocking on our doors and the most the CDC seems to be doing is asking it to wipe its feet before it comes in.
Ebola, which has been ravaging villages of West African countries without a shred of mercy, has become our new dinner guest passing out rolls with unwashed hands. Never before has this deadly virus graced our communities, but that all came to an end when an incredibly selfish man traveled from Liberia to the United States. He lied on his questionnaire so he may be granted travel rights by his home government (needless to say ours would have let him in regardless and “monitored” him) and, days later, decorated his apartment building parking lot with jet streams of Ebola-infested vomit.
Let’s not give this man all of the credit, though. A special hats-off goes to Texas Presbyterian for sending the man home with antibiotics and keeping the ambulance the returned him to the hospital in transit for two days afterwards. Crews without proper hazmat suits were sent in to handle the poisonous stream of emesis that glistened and sparkled in the glow of the street lights, striking these puddles with powerful jet sprays that sent the virus flying into the air only to settle on the many doorknobs of neighbors everywhere.
If only the CDC had been a little more honest about how the situation was being addressed. Swelling with arrogance over the successful treatments of previous Americans that had survived infection, they assured us that we have nothing to worry about. It’s been contained. They’re on top of it and it’s actually quite difficult to catch Ebola despite being a level 4 virus in their own labs where access is only granted to those with a multitude of vaccinations and boatloads of training. By all means, just go about your day and know that the CDC is on top of it.
It’s a shame that they failed to mention how patient zero’s family was left to fend for themselves without food in a crowded apartment alongside linens stiff from the aftermath of an Ebola victim. Sure, it’s not the CDC’s fault that this family failed to follow the recommendations of health officials and stay in on their own accord, but where’s the empathy for this family’s basic needs as they endure quarantine until October 19th?
As more and more details surrounding the case of Thomas Eric Duncan, just how confident are we in the Centers for Disease Control? After filling our heads with ghastly images of hazmat suits wading through disinfectant, weeping families and corpse-lined streets, we’re being told not to panic. More passion has been put towards having citizens get their flu shots than the arrival of Ebola Zaire in the United States. The flu each year will land a whole 1% or less of its victims in the hospital where less than .02% will die. Ebola Zaire has a fatality rate of up to 90%, averaging 50% during this current outbreak. It’s really sweet that Walgreen’s is donating a flu shot for each customer that gets one here, but, in all honestly, just which one of these African citizens gives a shit about their donated flu shot right now?
In all truthfulness, even if more cases of Ebola spring up around the country, this will not affect our land in the same way it’s affected the poor nations of West Africa. Unless it mutates and becomes airborne, we’re not going to see another 1918 flu pandemic. However, it doesn’t seem to make much sense to have another incident as we did just this weekend at Newark International Airport, now does it? The ill Liberian passenger has tested negative (in a matter of hours) for Ebola, but imagine if the test had been positive?
So, on top of a medical industry that has no idea how to handle Ebola in a land with paved roads and running water, we also show no signs of taking the initial steps towards a more definitive approach to stopping an outbreak – banning all travel from Ebola-stricken countries to the United States. Sure, other countries have done it, but they’re not as nice as us. Would we cease to achieve our goal of becoming the most polite, politically-correct state should we void a person’s travel rights during a time of plague? After all, we have a government more alarmed by Global Warming then they are Global Terrorism, focusing whole-heartedly on a threat that is not only theorized and disputed regularly, but will take hundreds of years to kill us, if true, rather than terrorists that may kill us tomorrow.
We feared that, the moment the first Ebola patient was flown back to the United States for treatment, the God-like complexes would grow. If he lived, which he did, there would be no stopping the abundance of confidence from spreading like… well, like a highly contagious level four hemorrhagic fever.
The right questions are not being asked by our journalists such as, “Isn’t it possible to catch Ebola from the microscopic droplets that spray from every person’s mouth when they vomit?” How about, “how long would a patient remain contagious from Ebola even if he survives due to the shedding that occurs?” Lastly, “what are the possibilities of an Ebola Mary?”
Personally, our fingers are crossed for a different outbreak of class action lawsuits against United Airways, against Texas Presbyterian and even against the CDC. After all, the only kryptonite to the personal freedoms superhero is money so it’s time to make the gods get over themselves and admit that the monster is loose and borders must be tight.