It’s no secret that the United States is experiencing issues with fighting Ebola. Anyone who actually understands how things work knows, as National Institutes of Health head Dr. Francis Collins, explained, “NIH has been working on Ebola vaccines since 2001. It’s not like we suddenly woke up and thought, ‘Oh my gosh, we should have something ready here.'”
“Frankly,” he said, “if we had not gone through our 10-year slide in research support, we probably would have had a vaccine in time for this that would’ve gone through clinical trials and would have been ready.”
Right-wing blogger Erick Erickson responded to a recent ad called “Republican Cuts Kill,” which highlights examples of conservatives pushing for the very cuts that are hindering our ability to fight Ebola by explaining that the real reason we are so ill-prepared is that fat lesbians took all the Ebola money.
In an article titled, “Fat Lesbians Got All the Ebola Dollars, But Blame the GOP,” Erickson claims that a study on obesity that focused on sexual orientation, along with one on marital bliss, studies on the public health issue presented by gun violence, and campaigns intended to encourage people to stop smoking took away every penny that could have been spent preparing for an Ebola outbreak.
It’s a defensive ad that reeks of desperation. At a time when more and more Americans, including millennials, are concluding government just doesn’t work, it probably won’t be effective. And Republicans can respond in kind.
For example, instead of studying Ebola, the National Institutes of Health were studying the propensity of lesbians to be fat.
Then there was the money for a study on wives who calm down quickly.
And the Centers for Disease Control spent its budget on gun violence studies on order of the Presidentas part of his agenda to curtail the second amendment.
The CDC also spent its money to survey what bus riders thought of HIV videos.
Hey, and let’s not forget all the money the CDC spent to convince people to stop smoking and now we need tobacco to manufacture the drug to fight Ebola. Classic.
Yes, classic. Erickson ignored the undeniable fact that conservative budget cuts have led to a 50% decrease in the CDC’s emergency preparedness budget since 2006.
Scientific American notes that,
The CDC’s discretionary funding was cut by $585 million during [2010-14]. Shockingly, annual funding for the CDC’s public health preparedness and response efforts were $1 billion lower for 2013 fiscal year than for 2002. These funding decreases have resulted in more than 45,700 job losses at state and local health departments since 2008. Again, it is not just the Ebola that is a looming threat. We need to worry about vaccine-preventable but neglected infections like influenza, measles, and whooping cough; the serious emerging viral infections in the US like Enterovirus-D68, chikungunya and dengue, as well as overseas MERS and bird flus, and natural disasters.
None of this matters to Erickson, though, because it is much easier to scapegoat “fat lesbians” than to realize that one’s party has some very real issues.
Remember that Erickson’s readers and followers will be voting in the midterm elections. Will you?