As the death toll from the latest Ebola outbreak in Africa nears 1,000, Sociology Professor Susan Sered challenges the tepid response from the United States in the Salon.com article “America’s shameful Ebola ignorance: The troubling truth about our attitude toward the virus.”
“The United States has sent …a seven-person team to help in Guinea, and provided protective clothing and equipment for healthcare workers in all three countries. In the grand scheme of things, that is a minimal amount of aid – echoed by the minimal coverage the outbreak has garnered in U.S. media," she writes.
Sered cites racism and “compassion fatigue” as some of the possible reasons that Americans aren’t more engaged with the deadly outbreak. Yet she points out that the United States can help by putting its expertise to work, but it also can learn through involvement with public health emergencies elsewhere.
“Ignoring the reality that the health of each of us is inexorably intertwined with the health of others is a collective disaster-in-the-making,” she writes.