>Are you a young child under 5 years old? A senior citizen? If not, then the swine flu will most probably NOT kill you!

9:44 AM


Pork influenza / fluImage by hulk4598 via Flickr
With the president announcing a national emergency and there being a new swine flu vaccine made available, I'm betting a lot of people are panicking about the swine flu.

First of all, let's get something straight. At the time of the president's announcement, the swine flu had killed about 1,000 people. That seems like a lot until you take the following in to consideration:

  • Millions of people have had the swine flu.
  • The seasonal flu kills an average of 36,000 people a year.
When you read up on what the swine flu really is, you find further evidence that it's not nearly as scary as the media would like you to think it is. The swine flu is a combination of swine, bird, and human flu strains. That makes it super potent, right? Wrong. It just makes it the first time a single flu virus has been able to infect humans and animals. Other than that it is just your typical flu strain.

So what got the government so worried about it? First of all, it's very easily transferable. Second, over half the people that have gotten infected with the swine strain of the flu virus have died. The only thing that kept people from getting it was that it was hard to transfer. Now they're worried that with the swine flu virus people will start coming down with the swine version of the flu and they will be able to catch it more easily than ever. Then there's Mexico.

Mexico has suffered a very high death rate from swine flu. Scientists are puzzled as to why so many in Mexico are dying in comparison to the U.S. where the swine flu has barely made a dent in the population even though it's gotten a lot of people sick. I can take one pretty good guess at that. It all comes down to income levels. I don't think a lot of Americans realize exactly how poor a lot of Mexicans are. You know when you see those third world countries on T.V. where everyone is living in hovels and there's no running water or electricity? That's what a lot of Mexicans deal with on a daily basis (and is a big reason as to why we end up with so many illegal immigrants). Anyways, when you're that poor, you're not very likely to have the best health to begin with. My guess is Mexicans are having a harder time fighting the virus off due to weaker immune systems and more than likely poor medical care as well.

This is also a brand spanking new virus. Viruses have an amazing ability to mutate in order to ensure maximum survival. This means they may become more contagious, broaden the number of the types of hosts they can infect, reproduce faster, become immune to current treatments, or even increase their "potency" (create new symptoms and/or make the symptoms they already produce worse than they were before). This makes anti-viral drugs and vaccines only effective for so long - they have a shelf life before the virus mutates so much they're rendered ineffective. The government has put tons of money in just keeping seasonal flu vaccinations and treatments up to date. With the swine flu in the picture, now the government not only has to worry about keeping up with another virus, they also have to worry about what this virus is going to become. It's already shown itself to be a lot smarter than your average flu strain by showing the ability to infect 3 different types of hosts. The government is more than likely worried this virus is not done with its bag of tricks quite yet.

Anyways, now there is a vaccine. We're all saved, right? Think again. This vaccine has mercury in it. Mercury is not only toxic to humans, it can cause all kinds of problems in the types of people that would need this vaccine the most - children under 5 and senior citizens. At least one doctor has came forward to say that he does not trust this vaccine.

I'm not saying that people should not worry about the swine flu, or that they shouldn't get this vaccine. I am saying that they should carefully consider everything before choosing to receive or not to receive this vaccination. I personally will not be getting it because I'm not one of those likely to die from the virus and I don't particularly like the idea of pumping any amount of mercury in to my body. I'm not really sure yet as to whether or not I will look for Brennan to get the vaccine. That is a decision that needs to be heavily weighed, because Brennan is in the age group likely to experience fatal complications from the virus but he's also in the age group likely to experience complications from getting injected with mercury. Right now I am leaning more towards taking precautions against infection and taking him to the hospital should he show any flu-like symptoms so if it is the swine flu it can be treated with anti-virals early in the game.

Am I being paranoid? Hardly, considering I have to look someone in the face all the time that was crippled for life by a polio vaccination... Speaking of polio, it has been found that the people receiving that vaccination also seem to have ended up with a monkey virus strain that causes tumors and cancer. This viral strain evidently has been passed on through the population as they're finding quite a few cancer patients that never got the polio vaccine that have this particular virus. This happened because the government was developing the polio viral strain on monkey's kidneys and did not realize the monkeys were infected with this other virus.

When you culture a virus on a living being, you run the risk of culturing any other viruses that living being may have.

How are they making the swine flu vaccination? They're culturing it in chicken eggs...

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