Paranoia Overblown for World Wide Disease

Ashlyn Scott, Assistant Editor


***Opinion pieces reflect the opinion of the writer only, and not the opinion of the newspaper staff, student body, administration or school faculty.***

America is very paranoid about the virus Ebola these days. The misinformation about this virus has run rampant due to media scare tactics, which is why I am going to give you some educational information about the virus.

The first thing that you need to keep in mind is that it is more than okay to have a healthy fear towards something that can kill you, but it is not okay to be completely paranoid. For instance, it is fine to have a healthy fear of a car, the flu, a gun and anything else that can kill you. Just because people have cars, or the flu or a gun does not automatically mean you will die in a car wreck, from a case of the flu or will be shot. You have just as much of a chance of being mauled by a bear as you do dying from Ebola in the U.S. If people had as much fear for a car as they do Ebola I honestly think the rate of deaths due to car wrecks would drastically go down.

Yes, Ebola is dangerous and yes it can kill you, but so can many other things in this world. The fact of the matter is that in West Africa the conditions are significantly different from America. West Africa is largely without adequate medical resources, sanitation, or education necessary to effectively stop the spread of this epidemic.

There are numerous videos of infected people being held and kissed by their loved ones. Contact in this way is of course the best way to contract and further spread the virus. Bodily fluids are at this time the only way in which Ebola is caught.

Misinformation and ignorance has led many villages to rejecting the help of the health care physicians and conventional medical wisdom. Most of these communities have wiped themselves out.

If you have not been in direct contact with a person’s bodily fluids when they were showing symptoms of the virus, then you are completely fine. When the CDC updated the status of how the virus is spread to droplet form they were again reinforcing that it is spread through fluids. The virus can remain active in the droplet for only a short time, and it is still not considered airborne.

All the conspiracy theories, all of the paranoia and worry is completely unnecessary. No one is out to get anyone. This is just a virus taking its natural course and infecting people that are not effectively trying to stop it. There have been outbreaks before but they were controlled quickly using conventional means. The spread of this disease is largely due to ignorance and the lack of sanitation in third world countries.

Go to science class folks. Take Ebola for what it is, not what the media has made it out to be.

For more information, check these sites:

Click to access facts-about-ebola.pdf