Going deep into the tunnel

In the words of Willie Wonka as he took a boat of children through hell in his chocolate factory,

There’s no earthly way of knowing
Which direction we are going
There’s no knowing where we’re rowing
Or which way the river’s flowing

Is it raining, is it snowing
Is a hurricane a-blowing?

Not a speck of light is showing
So the danger must be growing
Are the fires of Hell a-glowing
Is the grisly reaper mowing?

Yes, the danger must be growing
For the rowers keep on rowing
And they’re certainly not showing
Any signs that they are slowing!

It feels a bit like we are moving into uncharted territory for our generation.. A time where disease and pestilence plague the landscape.. a time when the young eat the old, and where the demons inhabit the most innocent people and places on the planet.

This is the new world..
A ravaged population..

The Halloween season upon us again, and yet again there are things taking place in the real world that make the symbols of the season of the witch look tame. Images of Thomas Eric Duncan’s family after his death, and now a new nurse infected–with up to 70 other hospital workers deep in the heart of Texas coming in contact with the dying Duncan before he succumbed to his fate on earth..

The United States and Europe are attracting the majority of headlines–amazing since they have the vast minority of cases. Nonetheless, they want to keep it that way. Budget cuts over the past few years may make that difficult to do.. Lawmakers are now rushing to fund anything they can throw money at to keep Ebola at bay. At least until the November election passes and it doesn’t turn into a November insurrection.

But here is the problem: We are a free-flowing population of billions of people. Airfare happens. And with it comes sickness, as we saw from the Duncan case.  The WHO is warning us that air travel may even become more dangerous–even if that is implied. the WHO said that there is strong evidence that the Ebola epidemic in Africa is still spreading. The number of cases in West Africa will exceed 9000 this year.. This plague of the people has gone on for months now, and there are some signs that the hardest hit areas are seeing less cases. On the flipside: There are more prefectures and districts coming in contact with Ebola..

The other problem may be the underreporting of cases on the African continent.

The media isn’t helping.
Their focus has solely been on the spread of Ebola to nations that are not in Africa. That is typical of their journalistic style but not doing anything to address the root cause of the problem or find solutions so future epidemics don’t happen. The ignorance of Africa is appalling. On many levels. Even from me.. I took a quiz on JetPunk days ago and had to take a long look in the mirror. My least strong continent was Africa. We don’t hear about it from our news sources unless there is a ‘strange’ or bizarre story that only reinforces the images that the Western world has of the land.. That has not done anything to help this Ebola situation.

When the disease began to ravage, instead of completely ignoring information, the media should have been quick to report it.

I recall the 1990s outbreak.. Ebola always felt like it was ‘there.’  Though I go back in memory and recall old Art Bell shows in which he was worried Ebola would break out here, things were not nearly as close together as now.

Now.. no screening for Ebola takes place at airports, but hands are quickly down pants of every age to sniff out the shoe bomber .. even though the shoe bomber had a well dressed man helping him on board. I digress…

Now, as Halloween approaches, we are forced to deal with a potential outbreak. At this point, it appears that the fear is catching on quicker than the actual plague. That could change, though.. especially if 70 people handled the blood, sweat, vomit, and tears of Mr. Duncan. Seventy people can multiply like wildfire.. Breed like rabbits.. and hop from continent to continent.

EBOLA is not just ‘there’ in one of those countries run by warlords on a continent far away. It’s here. And it could be everywhere..

Maybe this is a lesson: The next time that a disease breaks out among poor indigenous people someone on the planet, the media should pay attention, report, and realize that we are all connected. Not only by plane, train, and automobile, but in spirit. And for that, the media owes it to other humans just to report their plight–before it takes flight.

Yes, the danger must be growing
For the rowers keep on rowing
And they’re certainly not showing
Any signs that they are slowing!