Tags: Ebola Outbreak | Ebola | Outbreak

Too Risky to Bring Ebola Patients Here

Monday, 18 August 2014 11:31 AM Current | Bio | Archive

In 1957, despite extensive quarantine measures, thousands of African bees that had been brought to Brazil were accidentally released. They rapidly colonized Central and South America, and by 1985 reached America, making them one of the most successful biologically-invasive species of all time.

We know them as killer bees.

They continue marching northward, and why would we expect anything different?

As Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park correctly states, nature always finds a way, "The kind of control you're attempting simply is not possible. If there is one thing the history of evolution has taught us, it's that life will not be contained. Life breaks free, it expands to new territories and crashes through barriers, painfully, maybe even dangerously . . . life finds a way.”

The list of human-introduced invasive species is long: Chestnut tree blight — a fungus from Japan that wiped out almost all of America’s 4 billion Chestnut trees. Asian pythons, snakehead fish from China, stinkbugs, wild boar in Hawaii, and lionfish in the Caribbean — which escaped from a seaside aquarium destroyed in a hurricane — to name just a few.

All wreak havoc because they reproduce prodigiously and have no natural predators. Despite our best efforts, there is no cure to stop their advance, let alone eliminate them.

Accidents are bad enough, but deliberately introducing a foreign species makes the sin mortal. That’s no pun, given the decision by America’s leaders to allow the extremely deadly Ebola virus into America — an incomprehensible move that could prove mortal to millions if the virus escapes or worse, mutates.

Allowing two American health care workers entry to the U.S. to receive medical treatment after contracting Ebola is simply baffling. It was not prudent, beneficial, and most certainly, not humanitarian.

It was stupidity and arrogance at the highest level.

Here’s a sobering analysis,
  • The highly-contagious Ebola virus is not your typical nasty infection, but a say-your-prayers, because-you’re-about-to-meet-God killer. In horrendous fashion, it wipes out 70 percent of its victims, with the Zaire strain’s death rate exceeding 90 percent. It doesn’t get much worse.
  • There was absolutely, positively no reason to transport missionaries Dr. Kent Brantly and Nancy Writebol into America. None. It was right to treat them with an experimental drug, but an unforgivable mistake administering it within U.S. borders.

There is nothing we can learn from their stay in an Atlanta hospital that we couldn’t learn from a secure, offshore location. The smartest thing would have been to quarantine them on a specialized Navy ship equipped to deal with bio-hazards such as Ebola. Or we could have transported them to a remote island with a special Center for Disease Control unit on-hand, with the equipment and expertise necessary to constitute a Level 4 bio containment lab; the most secure bio-facility in the world.

But we didn’t. Instead, whether for headlines of just being headstrong, our leaders needlessly placed Americans at extreme risk, especially since scientists aren’t sure exactly what they’re dealing with.

These missionaries were performing a service so selfless as to be almost incomprehensible. But that choice came with extreme risk. As educated people, they knew those risks, and courageously faced them. But their decision should not place Americans at risk of contracting a deadly virus that had not yet crossed the ocean.

We can mitigate risk but not eliminate it.

Ebola will certainly enter the country via an air traveler, but why we voluntarily chose to allow it is unfathomable.

We keep getting reassured by experts that there is no chance of Ebola getting loose here because it is spread by bodily fluids — not airborne, at least for now — and therefore difficult to contract. To that, refer to Point One, as history is full of the incorrect predictions of arrogant scientists.

But here’s a question no one is asking.

If it’s so hard to get, why did an American doctor and his aide, who knew the virus better than most, contract Ebola? The same for Sheik Humarr Khan, a leading doctor who recently died from Ebola.

Either they weren’t protecting themselves, or the virus is spreading more easily than we are being told. Either way, since transmission via blood, sweat, saliva and urine isn’t the easiest way for a virus to spread, all research should be performed at a remote location outside America.

That should be standing policy, no exceptions.

People’s outrage and fear are well-justified. Evolution has had devastating effects on human populations. As the most intelligent life, we have the unique ability to study, alter and eradicate some of nature’s most lethal concoctions. But in doing so, we can’t forget to use our most important gift: common sense.

No more Ebola patients into America. No exceptions.

It’s time to make that message go viral.

Chris Freind is an independent columnist, television commentator, and investigative reporter who operates his own news bureau, Freindly Fire Zone Media. Read more reports from Chris Freind — Click Here Now.


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Allowing two American health care workers entry to the U.S. to receive medical treatment after contracting Ebola is simply baffling.
Ebola, Outbreak
Monday, 18 August 2014 11:31 AM
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