HOUSTON, October 27, 2014 — President Barack Obama is on the verge of becoming President Barack Ebola. While the title may appear to be a slur, Obama is wearing it like a badge of honor. It should be neither.
Obama may have genuinely put his own life at risk to prove an ideological point.
When the Ebola crisis broke out in West Africa, Americans were assured that it would not come to the United States. Perhaps the government lied and perhaps they were just wrong. What matters is that several cases of Ebola have developed in Texas and New York. Obama represents the group of Americans convinced that the problem is overstated. Many Americans who already distrust the Obama government and government in general believe the situation is understated.
To make his point, Obama invited Nina Pham to the White House.
Ms. Pham was one of the two nurses who came down with Ebola after treating the original victim. After nearly dying herself, Pham received aggressive medical treatment and appears to have completely recovered. She has been declared Ebola free and therefore no longer a medical risk capable of spreading the deadly contagion.
In a symbolic act at the White House, Obama gave her a hug for the entire world to see.
Obama has been praised for his act of compassion. After all, Americans were originally terrified of AIDS in the 1980s. It was unknown back then, and fear allowed misinformation to be spread. By hugging people with AIDS, some of the stigma was removed. People became educated about how it could and could not be spread. So if Obama is right, his hug of Pham will show there is nothing to fear.
But there is one potentially fatal problem.
What if Obama is wrong?
What if Pham still carries the Ebola virus? What if Obama just contracted it without knowing it?
It probably won’t happen. The President would probably survive skydiving — George H.W. Bush does it — but do we want him taking the risk?
No decent person would ever wish Ebola on anybody. Obama’s toughest critics want him to lead a healthy and happy life far away from the levers of government power. What if he just hastened his own death to win some short-term political points?
Obama is not a doctor. He is not surrounded by doctors. His Ebola Czar Ron Klain is a political operative with no medial experience. The Centers for Disease Control, which frequently handles things well, has been wrong on Ebola every step of the way.
This issue is medical, not political. Unfortunately, Obama has allowed politics to trump sound medical judgment.
Obama insisted that he was “not philosophically opposed” to a quarantine of Ebola patients. This is untrue. He is using the heavy hand of the federal government to intimidate any state and local officials who try to put a quarantine in place. Liberal New York Governor Andrew Cuomo backed down from his tough state quarantine under veiled threats from the White House.
There is so much unknown in the world of medicine. The only constant is change. The only way to gain knowledge, as Americans did with AIDS, is through time. Children in the back of the car know how to ask, “are we there yet?” With Ebola, we are not even close to being there yet.
Obama could very well be right about there being nothing to worry about. “Could be” is not good enough. His administration has gotten too many things wrong for Americans to take him at his word. His credibility is long gone.
While Obama’s sincerity has often been criticized for valid reasons, the Ebola situation shows Obama to be a true believer. He is not willing to turn his wife into a widow or his children into orphans just to make his case. He genuinely believes that this Ebola scare is much ado about nothing.
He had better hope and pray that he is right. If he is wrong, he may have just sentenced himself to death.
No political victory is worth that ultimate price.
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