Sunday, May 3, 2009

Something to consider

This contribution to Mellow Yellow Monday is not as lighthearted as past posts, but considering the current hubbub about swine flu, it is time appropriate.

What you are seeing in the photo is the image from a thermal scanner. This one was set up in the airport in Indonesia to screen travelers for body heat – which translates to having a temperature. There was not an accompanying article, but I’m assuming if you were radiating heat, you would be detained or confined or whisked away.

I’m happy to relay information from an editorial that appeared in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Instead of jumping on the media fear frenzy, the article took a step back with a different approach. Here are the highlights:

“Frightening though the risk may be, it’s also important to keep the numbers in perspective. Consider these risks…”

Annual seasonal flu deaths in the U.S.: 36,000
Shark attacks in U.S. waters (2008): 59
Annual deaths from food-borne illness: 5,000
Accidental poisoning deaths (2004): 23,618
Estimated deaths from being uninsured (2006): 22,000 to 27,000
Diabetes deaths (2004): 73,138
Heart disease deaths (2004): 652,486
Annual tobacco-related deaths U.S.: 438,000
Motor vehicle accident deaths (2004): 43,667

It’s a wacky world we live in. Be safe. Stay healthy.

Photo credit: Bay Ismoyo/Getty


DrowseyMonkey-Photos said...

That's very interesting!

I think the media loves these kinds of stories 'cause it gives them something to talk about.

Rudee said...

Creating the atmosphere of fear keeps us little sheep in line.

kayleen said...

I hope I'm correct in thinking it's media over-hype. Of course since the media is constantly blathering about it, we're all taking more precautions. So how much will that impact whether it really turns into a pandemic. Guess we'll never know.

kayleen @ Lincoln Daily Photo

Greta said...

Excellent way to put it P! The media does make it just ridiculous most of the time.

Tess said...

Very interesting and informative post. Thanks for sharing.

Sally in WA said...

Interesting post and picture! Thanks for sharing. Enjoy your Monday!

fickleinpink said...

thanks for sharing!

Lover of Life said...

Thanks for the perspective.

Lindy MacDuff said...

I am very glad to see the article highlights you posted. I have been trying to figure out how the swine flu is 'more fatal' than regular seasonal flu and no one ever seems to address that issue.

In any case, your photo is a most interesting/artful/historical capture.

Thanks for stopping by my blog, too.

C. Michael Cox said...

I refuse to live my life in fear. Great post!

Ribbon said...

I like the look of those thermal images.
They're scanning people here at our airports in Australia too.
You're spot on... you can't believe the hype.
Good to be informed, but not worried.

best wishes

Marvin D. Wilson said...

Good post - helps to keep things in perspective. :)

prkl said...

Great post, innovative photo. Media gives what we wanna. Vast majority swallows it up and don't think. Gladly there are few. Like you. And your readers. Happy MYM! :)

SpookyRach said...

The whole situation is just embarrassing.

Way embarrassing.

Debo Hobo said...

Awesome post, it is very important to keep things in perspective. I am ashamed of the MSM blowing this out of proportion, causing the govt to over react.

But, if they didn't take some kind of action we would be scream holy heck and calling for heads to roll, so it is a lose lose for them.

♥peachkins♥ said...

this is very informative.thanks

lakeviewer said...

Good words to remember. We do rush and overeact don't we?

drollgirl said...

this is totally right on to post! the whole thing is nerve-wracking, but i think the chances are still quite minimal of catching it. hopefully!!!

Cormac Brown said...

You, too! Salute!

earthtoholly said...

Interesting photo...and very different! And thank you for the accompanying info. A bonus!

Lola said...

Wise and interesting post, Patrizia. Thank you! Media hype I fear more than pandemic swine flu. But it's never too bad to stay healthy and OD on vitamin C.
Ciao pazzerella and again thank you for the kind award, Friend!

(word verification: inmed. Now don't say blogger doesn't read EVERYTHING we write)

disa said...