Wed | Oct 17, 2018

LETTER OF THE DAY - God, chik-V, and Ebola

Published:Saturday | October 4, 2014 | 12:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir: Bacteria, viruses, and disease are facts of life. As global warming marches on, expect the return of viruses which have not been seen for decades. Expect also the mutation and evolution of hybrid viruses.

Chikungunya and Ebola have not been commissioned by God or Satan. Nor are the diseases a consequence of moral failure or political negligence. Like other natural phenomena such as earthquakes, hurricanes, and volcanoes, the created order is dynamic and life is what it is because of the multiplicity of forces at work. Some of these forces lead to death, especially where effective responses have not been engaged.

It is ever so misleading and even embarrassing to hear representatives of the Church and other religious groups declaring that a virus is the voice of God!

Since we have all been recipients of a brain, we ought to use this more. If the Bible were a substitute for the brain, numerous transplants would have been done before.

Whether people are of religious faith or otherwise, we may indeed use the current concerns regarding chik-V and Ebola as a catalyst for some life-enriching experiences and lessons.

Jamaica can ill afford the luxury of political mileage at the expense of working together. Why should anyone die after seeking medical care and waiting almost 24 hours in a medical facility?

We have good cause at hand for thousands of Jamaicans to march for literally clearing the environment of mosquito-breeding sites. Imagine communities, led by the churches in those communities, marching out to do a massive clean-up of anything that would prevent the breeding of mosquitoes.

We have good cause at hand for community partnering to transcend the barriers of political colours and religious bigotry! Imagine communities in which it does not matter what your religious affiliation is and people become more focused on the well-being of everyone.

We have good cause at hand to be reminded that Ebola does not care whether or not you keep the Sabbath. Ebola does not care whether or not you are the only one with the 'truth'. Ebola is most certainly not interested in your ability to speak or not speak in unknown tongues. Like any other disease affecting primates and humans, Ebola's only interest is PEOPLE!

What a powerful opportunity we have at our disposal. Will we use it?