I know I usually keep my posts limited to TV shows and movies, but if a topic pisses me off enough I have to comment.
The second I saw the New York Times report about the confirmed Ebola patient in New York, I knew that the public outrage about the virus would grow exponentially. Mostly because, and I can say this because I am from New Jersey, New Yorkers love to whine and complain. The fact of the matter is that Ebola affects health care workers and the relatives of people with Ebola. The virus is not airborne, and high levels of Ebola are not found in saliva or sweat, but rather in blood, feces, and vomit. So unless someone with Ebola bleeds or vomits on the subway, you are in the clear. Boycotting public transportation only negatively affects the economy and makes you look like a fool. The incense about Ebola shouldn’t consist of people screaming, “We are all going to get Ebola! It’s an epidemic! Ban the flights!” We should be more concerned with how the health care workers interacting with Ebola patients can receive more proper training to protect them and their families.
Most people have no control over Ebola, cannot do anything about Ebola, and will not be affected by Ebola. Yet, this is the issue receiving the most media attention. The midterm elections affect the entire country, everyone can actually participate and make a difference, but you barely hear anything about them. Our Congress has an 8% approval rating, and yet voter turnout falls by roughly 15% compared with presidential elections. The G.O.P already controls the House of Representatives, and Republican control of the Senate would make it virtually impossible for President Obama to push any important issues through Congress. Do not simply vote for a Republican candidate because you define yourself as “Republican” and feel obligated to. Most Republicans wind up voting against their own self-interest; research who it is you are voting for. When the Republicans in Congress refuse to cooperate with the President, we all suffer because nothing gets accomplished. I don’t know about you, but the thought of a government shutdown scares me more than Ebola.
A midterm election might not be as exciting as a frantic medical outbreak, but it still deserves your attention. Take the ten seconds you would have spent writing an angry tweet about Ebola, and register to vote. Find out when and where to vote and figure out who’s on your state’s ballot. For my fellow college students, go online and register for absentee voting if you haven’t already.