Wednesday, October 15, 2014


*Disclaimer: I am not a medically trained person. Having said that I am a student of history and especiallyof the old quote that "history tends to repeat itself."

Bubonic Plague was often used synonymously for Plague, but it refers specifically to an infection that enters through the skin and travels through the lymphatics. (Wiikopedia)

The Black Death arrived in Europe by sea in October 1347 when 12 Genoese trading ships docked at the Sicilian port of Messina after a long journey through the Black Sea. The people who gathered on the docks to greet the ships were met with a horrifying surprise: Most of the sailors aboard the ships were dead, and those who were still alive were gravely ill. They were overcome with fever, unable to keep food down and delirious from pain. Strangest of all, they were covered in mysterious black boils that oozed blood and pus and gave their illness its name: the “Black Death.” The Sicilian authorities hastily ordered the fleet of “death ships” out of the harbor, but it was too late: Over the next five years, the mysterious Black Death would kill more than 20 million people in Europe–almost one-third of the continent’s population. Some estimates were at least 75million. (Wikopedia)

Why do I bring up the subject of Black Death? Count the ways that it parallels Ebola. Spreads through the skin. Virulent spreading.

The major difference in the spread was in the 14th century, fleas from rodents which prolifically  existed back then.

But the huge difference between the Black Plague and Ebola is the methods of transportation then and now. In the middle ages, people traveled by ship, by animals, (horses, mules, etc) and mostly on foot.

Flash to now, travel is by air, by buses, cars and trains. It doesn't take a great imagination to see how much faster this type of disease  can and will spread if emergency measures are not immediately effected. an infected person not yet showing symptoms will board planes that girdle the earth. This time if it gets away, it won't just be one continent.

Instead of the health authorities leading this issue, Homeland Security should right damn now, limit travel. With a three week germination, checking temperatures at airports is a political solution, not a practical one. 

With just three weeks, or about the same as the disease, are the mid-term elections. this suggests that throwing the public into panic would be a bad campaign strategy. So what I see is a band aid where a tourniquet is needed. Already, Texas, Cleveland and CDC, are involved. Three destinations very far apart.

Air travel, except military flights should be terminated right now from Sub-Saharan Africa. We must be aware that panicked people in these regions will take extraordinary measures to escape what they may already by carrying. Travelers that have come from these areas should be detained wherever their connection flight originates.

If we do all of these things it still might be too late, but at the very least the government needs more than ever, to govern.  Dragging feet at this time will assure panic at the polls, that is if people go to them at all.Avoidance of places where many people meet may need to take a three week vacation.Sports venues with thousands stuffed together may need to resort to Television rather than attendance.

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