The Outbreak Of Ebola Virus

1866 WordsMay 29, 20158 Pages
The recent outbreak of the ebola virus in 2014 reminds the world of the vulnerability of society because of the great force of disease. However, this outbreak of ebola is miniscule in comparison to all the pestilence and plague that has emerged throughout history. Nothing compares to the bubonic plague, which killed one-third of Europe’s population, smallpox, which completely eradicated some indigenous populations in the Americas, and AIDS/HIV, which is one of the greatest challenges the world faces today. All of these are characterized by to no methods of treatment (at their height), extremely painful symptoms, and their ability to spread easily. The Black Death, smallpox, and AIDS may be considered the most devastating pandemics to…show more content…
When Columbus first brought this disease to the Americas, he landed on the island of Hispaniola, now known as Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Here in 1507, the local indigenous group of three million people, the Taino, was exposed to smallpox. A couple of decades later, the Taino were completely extinct. Soon afterwards, smallpox spread to Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean. Every two years, three to four million Indians continued to die. As a result, it destroyed all Aztec civilization. Also, religious and political leaders were among those that died, and this only weakened the social structure of this region. Smallpox led to the loss of culture, knowledge, and tradition (Mari 24-28). Even recently after the attacks of September 11, 2001, the government of the United States has been concerned with the possibility of smallpox being used as a weapon of bioterrorism. In other words, smallpox, a biological agent is purposely spread as an act of terrorism ("Smallpox"). On the other hand, HIV, which stands for human immunodeficiency virus, is most prevalent in sub-Saharan Africa, which has 62% of the world’s HIV cases. Because sub-Saharan Africa is home to 70% of the poorest people in the world, people lack the skills and the money they need to survive. Therefore, the only way they can get their basic needs is the risky behavior. For example, women have to engage in sexual transactions for commercial
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