Sunday, 26 April 2009

"It's the End of the World as we know it, and I feel Swine..."

The Big Bad Wolf stopped at the Straw House and listened to the sounds from inside. Suddenly he didn't feel the desire to 'Huff and Puff'...

According to today's news you and I and everyone we know should mindlessly panic because of a potential Swine Flu pandemic. On Sky News there has been dramatic music, computer graphics, worried-looking experts and news readers giving it there all to scare the living daylights out of you. 'Pigs will kill you!!!' apparently. In the end I put on a DVD (Devil Wears Prada - people who know me well will understand why) because I was getting angry at the seeming enjoyment the news was taking in covering every single worrying detail about how a piggy virus that has killed 80-something people (out of a country of something like 25 million. And compared to that number I wonder how many people died on Mexico's roads or passed away from Cancer in the past week?) could, possibly, maybe, perhaps, kill untold millions. It was as though they were getting off on the fetishism of scaring people with what could happen and not what is actually occuring. I've now decided not to pay attention ot the news. I mean, we've seen this all before with SARS and Bird Flu. I remember being told by the print and TV media, who love to indulge in a bit of doomsday talk, that half of us would be killed by SARS or sneezing birds and the rest of us would have to live in hermetically-sealed bunkers. Years later, we're still standing and eating the chicken.

If/when the Swine Flu death numbers start getting worryingly big (I'm talking about hundreds of thousands across the entire Earth), then I'll start to pay attention. But for now the news can sit and swivel. Under a hundred people have died and many who have suffered from it have lived. And this is out of a planetary population of 6 billion. The human race isn't going to end just yet my friends. I'm not going to get dragged into the scaremongering and neither should you. Millions of people die every day from far more virulent and vile dieases that have been around for much longer but aren't as 'dramatic' to cover. So just switch off the news, sit back with some sausages, and take it easy. After all, it's Sunday.


dangerous dan said...

I agree. The media loves to overemphasize a story.