This is a serious disease, but we can’t give in to hysteria or fear-because that only makes it harder to get people the accurate information they need. We have to be guided by the science. We have to remember the basic facts.
It’s time to sit down, get a grip, take a deep breath and learn the facts about Ebola before America loses its ever-lovin’ mind. That’s the message, presented in a much more presidential fashion, by President Obama in his weekly address this morning.
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.
Got that, freaked-out America? Calm the hell down and get a flu shot. And he further explains, because we’ve turned into a nation of hair-on-fire kindergartners who know nothing about all the things we really should know about if we want to be considered scientifically literate:
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.
And so on. Explaining the basics to folks, that’s pretty much the whole address—sad but necessary information to get Americans to stop making homemade Hazmat suits for Halloween.
To read the transcript in full, check below the fold or visit the White House website.