Barely one month after Mexico reported its first death from a suspected swine flu outbreak the topic is already falling off the media agenda. In that time we have seen global media organisations calling the outbreak a “global crisis” and a “real threat to humanity.” However, there has only been one death outside Mexico (a Mexican infant visiting America) and now those same organisations are backpeddling stating that it is not as bad as first feared and the flu is only a mild form of the much feared H1N1 strain.
Did the global media over react to the so called “crisis”? Well the media certainly loves a good horror story and nothing is greater it seems than the end of existence. It seems that everyday humanity takes one step closer to its inevitable doom and these companies seem to be competing to have the biggest and best coverage. The accute irony, that if it was actually the end no one would be around to read this fantastic coverage, seems somewhat lost.
What the media should state in cases where a global pandemic seems possible is that western countries are most likely going to be least affected. The vast wealth of these countries, experienced medical organisations and the effective hygine controls mean that they are very well equiped to combat viruses speading. The actual places that we have to fear for are the countries like Mexico, Africa, China and many more where standards of living, medical care, and health are so low the virus is far more likely to rack up a horrific death toll.
Of course the media werent the only ones proclaiming that swine flu could be tragic. The World Health Organistation were also stating that it was a real threat, however, they did not have much in the way of reliable information from Mexico and most Western scientists still do not know much about the virus. Therefore, a lot of advice was based on guesswork and what could have been the worst possible outcome.
It now appears that swine flu will not be the end of human existance, with scientists even suggesting we should contract it so as to build up natural immunity. Clearly, the human race will have a little longer on this earth, at least until global warming kills us all off…….
the better twin