The migrant crisis: the biggest disaster America won’t care about since Ebola

If you ask the average American if they remember Ebola, most would probably guess that it’s the name of Kanye West and Kim Kardashian’s most recent child, rather than a deadly disease that has killed more than 10,000 people in West Africa since 2013.

People like to say that there is a white privilege in this country, and while they’re almost certainly right, I think there is also such a thing as American privilege. Because we are such an economic and military powerhouse, viewed as the land of opportunity, and share a border with such few countries, we don’t really have to concern ourselves too much with what’s going on in the rest of the world.

I mean, we definitely should. But most Americans do not. Hence American privilege.

The World Health Organization just declared Liberia Ebola-free, by the way.

Migrant crisisBesides island countries, citizens of other nations have no choice but to be deeply attentive to nearby countries. Greece’s recession, for example, has had a profound impact on the entire economy and currency of every country in the European Union. Puerto Rico, meanwhile, is an island territory of the U.S. also amid a recession, but nobody cares.

Anyway, so it comes as no surprise that when Europe finds itself facing its biggest humanitarian problem since World War II, a migrant crisis, it’s still not enough to capture America’s attention.

The closest we get in the U.S. to the topic of migration is Donald Trump accusing all Mexicans of being rapists.

The crisis certainly got the attention of the rest of the world last week, when a photo of a Syrian infant boy lying face-down, dead on a beach was widely circulated on the Internet. Or when Czech officials began marking the hands of migrants upon entry, reminiscent of the Nazis’ procedures during the Holocaust. Or when Hungary built a fence to keep them out after chaos broke out at a train station when migrants were told they were being trained to Austria but instead were sent to refugee centers.

They’re coming from mainly Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq, escaping civil war and the advance of terrorist groups, searching for better days in prosperous European countries. And leaders of those countries have no idea what to do.

But hey, we’re more than 4,000 miles away from all of this, so let’s rock out to the new Justin Bieber jam instead! That hook in the chorus that Skrillex added is sick, yo!

Americans aren’t bad people. We’re just blissfully ignorant because we can be.

But in a way, that is the American Dream. The same dream these migrants are seeking, that we very much take for granted: to live a carefree life in a comfortable home in a country where we are welcome.

And yet, Justin Bieber, that Canadian slimebucket, still can’t take a hint.

Go home, Justin. Go home.

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I listened to the whole Taylor Swift album today and I have no shame in it

I realized that every time I don’t post for a few days, I must begin my next entry by clarifying that I have not died of Ebola.

Yes, the virus has made its way to my home state. But unless I take a train to Bellevue hospital, walk into the secure, quarantined unit where the victim is being treated, and tell him to spit in my face, then I think I’ll be fine.

And considering that the dude is a doctor who risked his own health to volunteer to treat people in Guinea, I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t even spit in my face if I asked him to.

Why am I talking about asking people to spit in my face?

Anyway, we shouldn’t even be worrying about an Ebola outbreak in New York. What we should be worried about is Mali, where a 5-year-old traveled throughout the West African nation, not only Ebola ridden, not only showing symptoms, but with a nosebleed. The toddler has since died, and now officials fear others may catch it. It’s especially significant when you consider that health officials have determined that the ground zero patient of the whole West African outbreak, to begin with, was a 5-year-old.

But enough about Ebola.

What was significant about today? Sure, it’s the 110-year anniversary of the first Subway line opening in New York, but no one cares about that. It’s also been exactly 28 years since the New York Mets beat the Boston Red Sox to win the 1986 World Series. I do care about that, a lot, but it doesn’t fit my narrative so let’s move on.1989

Taylor Swift’s new album, 1989, dropped today.

And yes, albums that are not hip-hip or rap can “drop.”

I listened to the whole thing today. The whole goddamn thing. It’s 61 minutes and two seconds long. And I listened to it. If it makes me sound any better, I listed to it while I did an 8-mile run this evening, which took me 64 minutes to complete.

But who cares about my accomplishments. Back to Taylor.

The album is good. The rest of the tracks are nothing like “Shake it Off,” her satirical, malice-driven anthem against her critics. Rather, the album is more aligned with the second single, “Out of the Woods.”

Swift’s transition from country, where she started, to pop, has been a steady one. But in 1989, she abandons country entirely. The whole album is infused with energy, and Swift kind of tip-toes outside of the confines of today’s pop music. There’s a pleasing balance between conventional and innovation. It’s smooth yet disordered. It’s clear that she attempted to evolve her sound, while experimenting with various elements of pop, and I think she accomplished it.

My personal favorites after one listen are “How You Get the Girl” and “Wonderland.”

Now allow me to address another issue. I don’t care about admitting I like Taylor Swift. I’m secure with my masculinity (or lack thereof), and even more secure with what I believe is my highly sophisticated musical taste. Which also happens to include Taylor Swift.

You know what? I think I’d let Taylor Swift spit in my face.

Yeah, I just made this weird.

 

 

Great. We’re as stupid in real life as we are in movies.

When watching movies that depict a nationwide epidemic of a contagious and deadly disease, like 1995’s Outbreak, or 2011’s Contagion, one can’t help but laugh.

Not because we enjoy seeing millions of people die in a number of days, but because it’s pure fiction. We think, “we’re not stupid enough to do these things in real life, right?”

We’d like to think that our healthcare professionals, government, and just people in general are intelligent enough to understand the ramifications and danger of spreading a deadly virus. You don’t have to be brilliant. You just have to not be an idiot.

For example, if you know that you were somewhere where you are liable to be exposed to a virus, then you should be closely monitoring yourselfEbola for symptoms, avoiding crowded public places, and absolutely avoid airplanes.

I mean, airplanes are the cardinal sin. That’s like the #1 rule of not spreading disease. If you want to go to work, be my guest. Infect your coworkers. If you want to go to your nearest Walmart, then you’re really stupid, but still, at least an outbreak could still be prevented at that point.

If you get on an airplane, you’re pretty much just sending a giant “Fuck you” to the human race. Because now you’re making the disease airborne, and threatening our extinction.

And, if you were previously in a situation where you are at high risk to catch a disease, and start showing symptoms, and still don’t take proper precautions, then you’d like to think that a doctor or a nurse will do it for you. They’ll quarantine you and prevent whatever you have from spreading.

I’m talking about people who either just traveled to a country afflicted with disease, or a healthcare professional who was treating a patient with an infectious disease. Those are the people who should be high alert.

In the movies, there’s always an idiot who doesn’t take those necessary precautions, and starts the outbreak.

But that would never happen in real life, right? We’re smart enough to —

Wait, what’s that? You said a second Dallas nurse was infected with Ebola on Thursday? And she … did what? SHE GOT ON A GOD DAMN AIRPLANE?! ARE YOU KIDDING ME. WHAT THE HELL.

In the words of a teenage girl, — I can’t even.

Amber Joy Vinson, 29, a nurse who treated the first Ebola victim in the U.S., Eric Thomas Duncan, at the Texas Health Prsbyterian Hospital, was also exposed to the disease.

Days later, she got on commercial flight to Cleveland. 

No, she was not showing specific symptoms of Ebola at the time, but she did reportedly have a high temperature of 99.5 degrees at the time of her flight.

So let’s get this straight. She treated an Ebola victim. She was a threat to contract the virus herself. She was experiencing a high temperature. So she got on an airplane. Makes perfect sense. The worst part? She allegedly called federal officials before boarding the flight, and was given the OK.

This isn’t even worth a face palm. This is worth smashing your head into a desk.

At this point, we deserve whatever happens next. We all deserve Ebola. Government officials say the passengers on the plane with Vinson are at “low risk” because she wasn’t showing symptoms just yet, but, at this juncture, I don’t really trust what anybody says.

I’m just in awe that the idiotic things that happen in a movie also happen in real life.

What other movie cliches are true? Do people really run upstairs when they’re being chased in their home by a masked serial killer?

Does making a toast with your friends about losing your virginity guarantee that you will lose your virginity?

Is Hogwarts real?

I don’t know what to believe anymore.