26 December 2007

Reporting Like This Drives Me Nuts!

http://www.reuters.com/article/healthNews/idUSN2526656920071226?feedType=RSS&feedName=healthNews&rpc=22&sp=true

The article tells us that lots of inner-city folks are getting tapeworms and other worms that are more prevalent in third-world countries. And plenty of Hispanics have these worms as well.

OK.

So... Does that mean that the "Hispanics" affected are mostly from Mexico and carrying dread disease? Or is it something about the food they're eating in *general* that is a source of concern? (Should *I* avoid tacos or is there some other food that is suspect?) Is it transmissible if those affected are working in food service or factory work?

The article tells us that one suspected source is animal feces in inner-city parks. Well, once you HAVE the worms, you could get seizures. OK. What are some other symptoms? Do you see the things crawling around when you poop/ throw up? Are they sexually transmissible? Are they transmissible in families by sharing cups, etc.? Is there a vaccine for these worms or a treatment? Antibiotics?

Reporting like this DRIVES ME NUTS. Stories like this tell you only enough to freak you out, and not enough to have some rational thought when you're done with the article. One would *think* from reading the article that Hispanics and inner-city dwellers are mangy, dirty worm-filled people spreading their vermin about these great United States. And I think there needs to be some balance or perspective in the article about what these worms are, how they're treated and how we don't need to flip out that our gardener or the workers in our local restaurants will infect us. If that's true. Which I hope it IS.

I honestly have no clue how easily spread these worms are from the article, or how to get rid of them. Or even whether I should worry about my own cat having such a problem!

Bleh. Please don't report the story at ALL if you're not going to get off your bottom and do a little research and explaining to the layperson next time, ok??

2 comments:

  1. Are you saying black people and Latinos are full of mangy dirt or whatever? Why are you writing this?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Um, I think I was trying to convey the exact OPPOSITE; that I felt the article incited panic. Maybe read what I posted again?

    I think it's irresponsible reporting not to give a clear picture of what is going on and the relative threat of the problem. Or what can be DONE about the problem, or what is being done.

    The point I was trying to make had virtually nothing to do with inner-city blacks and Hispanics, except for the fact that that's who the article was about. The point I was trying to make was about incomplete and/or irresponsible reporting.

    Hope that clears that up.

    ReplyDelete

Non-troll comments always welcome! :)