NYT article: Notable Absence of New Ebola Quarantines at New York Area Airports

Looks like there’s effectively no quarantine for Ebola. So I guess it’s not a problem, since it’s being treated with such cavalier disregard. If someone returns from Africa and starts infecting people here, then maybe it’ll be a problem. And that’s what it will take, because in this country we don’t take measures to prevent crises. We wait until crises occur and then attempt to deal with them. What happens when a a heroic health worker picks up a virulent and easily transmitted disease? We don’t quarantine heroes. And heroes, in their darling heroic way, feel they have the right to come home triumphantly and ignore the risks they may present to others rather than take minimal precautions. Surely three weeks of comfortable quarantine is a lot more tolerable than the conditions they dealt with in Africa.  These people are incomprehensible.  So noble away from home, so  selfish and arrogant on their return.  Since they know better than most what the risks are, you’d think they’d want to help their nation avoid them.  But no, they’re such fine noble beings, so superior to we who stayed at home, that they mustn’t be inconvenienced or disrespected.  Better to let them bring home epidemics! Maybe they want to.  Maybe they want the opportunity to continue their heroics in their own country by bringing the plague home with them.  I have no faith in our government’s capacity to respond at any level, now, seeing how inconsistent, ineffectual, and cowardly, and vacillating the response has been to Ebola.

Trigger Warnings

Maybe it would be safest to have blanket trigger warnings for all English, history, and psych courses. Come to think of it, how about a trigger warning in the catalogue to cover all liberal arts courses? For those too sensitive to bear the curriculum, there’s always engineering. However keep in mind that in engineering you have to get the right answers, not just show that you thought and felt deeply about the problems.

Here’s a little scenario:

Imagine the following discussion of a class syllabus between a weary professor and an eager young student. Student: ” I’ve gone over the readings, and one of the novels has so many trigger warnings that I think it might be better if you went ahead and removed it from the reading list.” Professor: “Really? And which novel is that?” Student: “Sanctuary. Why just in the first few chapters my pencil would have broken from all the triggers I had to underline, except of course I did it all virtually on my e-reader. But still…” Professor: “”Hmm. So you want to take Sanctuary off the reading list? But what could I replace it with?” Student: “Well, I’m glad you asked. How about Anne of Green Gables?” Professor: “But it’s a course on William Faulkner!!!!”