Ebola: A Symptom of Our Morbidly Diseased Media and Politics


On October 25, the BBC reported that, according to the World Health Organization’s best estimates, there were over 10,000 Ebola cases in West Africa. At least 4,922 people had died from the disease, with all but 27 of those deaths occurring in three countries: Liberia, with 2,705 deaths; Sierra Leone, with 1,281 deaths; and Guinea, with 926 deaths.

At that point, there had been fewer than ten cases of Ebola in the United States, and just a single death. More significantly, all of the cases in the U.S. had involved health care workers who had volunteered to fight the epidemic in the most affected West African countries or who had cared for one traveler from West Africa who became the only U.S. fatality.

Yet the following headlines appeared in the Far Right media:

“Ben Carson Warns of Ebola Bio-Terror,” Newsmax.

“Ebola Can Be Weaponized,” Newsmax.

“[Michael] Savage: ‘They…

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About martinkich

I am a Professor of English at Wright State University's Lake Campus, where I have been a faculty member for more than 25 years. I have now served multiple terms as the President of the WSU chapter of AAUP, which now includes all full-time instructional faculty, and as the Vice-President of the Ohio Conference of AAUP. I have also served several terms as an at-large member of the Executive Committee of AAUP's Collective Bargaining Congress. In addition to serving as co-editor of the Academe blog, I am also a member of the editorial board of Academe and have been a guest editor for an issue of the magazine on collective bargaining strategies. As co-chair of the Ohio Conference's Communication Committee, I began to do much more overtly political writing during the campaign to repeal Ohio's Senate Bill 5, which would have eliminated the right of faculty to be unionized. I have sustained that activism, and at the risk of stating the obvious, I have very much enjoyed contributing to the Academe Blog and to our chapter blog. I also maintain several other blogs to which I have re-posted, by topic, my posts to the Academe blog, as well as some other items.

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