Sunday, October 25, 2009

Shut-Up Stupid Sunday: Swine Flu Scare

The current strain of Swine Flu (H1N1) and its vaccine has inspired the same irrational fears that have been going around as long as I can remember. The difference is that now fake news outlets are reporting those urban legends as fact.

Swine Flu: What it is.

The (H1N1) strain is merely a very contagious version of the flu, similar strains had outbreaks in the 50s and 1976. The only reason it is lethal is that the CDC has done such a good job in the recent past of suppressing flu outbreaks that young adults don’t have the anti-bodies built up from dealing with past flu’s.

Those born before 1950 and have good immune systems are relatively safe (although age makes it harder to fight it off if you do get it.) If you’ve had the flu a few times in the past you will recover quickly as your anti-bodies from previous flu’s can quickly adapt.

Children and the Elderly are always at risk from the flu or any other disease. The difference with the (H1N1) is that young adults haven’t built up immunity from exposure to flu viruses.

What it isn’t

It is not a super-virus that is going to wipe out humanity so the reptile race can take over.

It is not a plot by the Government to get its citizens sick.

It is not an intelligent alien virus that will enslave humanity to the galactic hive mind (That was the plot of my first book).

The vaccine: What it is.

The vaccine for the H1N1 strain is the same vaccine as the seasonal flu shot slightly modified for this strain. Had the modifications been rushed like some people claim it would have been included in the regular seasonal flu shot. (CDC)

It is as safe as the normal seasonal flu shot.

The vaccine: What it isn’t.

It is not a retro-virus that will transform people’s DNA making them mindless drones for the (insert your own version of the Boogeyman here).

It is not a ploy by the Government to make seniors face a government run “Death Panel”.

It is not filled with Nano-Probes to turn humanity into Borg-like Cyborgs.

It is not a plot by Atheists to somehow get rid of Prayer in Schools, That is done by the by the Evil Atheist Agenda’s ring of mind controlling satellites controlled by Activist Judges.

Whatever insane Conspiracy Theory Glenn Beck is crying about, it’s not that.

To all the morons that are trying to start a panic over a public health panic that the CDC has relatively under control, I say, “Shut-up Stupid.” Let the professionals deal with this.


Stephanie B said...

The CDC was right to be concerned. There were sufficient similarities between this strain and the "Spanish Flu" epidemic to treat it with great care and caution. Scientists are often faced with a catch-22 when if comes to warnings. If we feel there's justification for warnings, and we make them, but nothing or less of something than worst case happens (even if our warnings drastically reduce the death toll), we are labeled alarmists and ignored when the next threat comes through.

If, however, we wait to provide warnings because we don't want to come across as warnings and worst case happens, we are assholes who let people die needlessly.

Safety and preventive medicine are thankless tasks because it's almost impossible measure their benefits, but the benefits are head and shoulders above the dramatic triple bypass that could have been averted with an intelligent lifestyle. The more effective preventive medicine and safety programs are, the less visible an impact they have because problems are solved before they become problems. Ironically, that often leads the uninformed to question those very programs because they can't see what it buys us.


Project Savior said...

I wasn't talking about the CDC, they seem to be handling it with the right amount of caution. "Limit Exposure, Get the vaccine"

I was talking about the fear mongers - especially the anti-vax fear mongers that are just stoking peoples fear to panic levels when a little caution and commonsense is all that is required.

askcherlock said...

Those fear-mongers must be running out of issues. The H1N1 is a common sense issue. If you fall into the demographics of children or pregnant women, get the damn shot. I think the issue has been handled in a forthright manner and needs no SPIN.