You know how in the middle of a big-assed concert, the drummer will come out from behind the kit and the roadies will bring out the acoustic guitars and a free-standing pair of toms and a stand-up bass and the band will 'bring it down for an acoustic set?' Today I'm turning the volume down a bit and getting a little more intimate.
I haven't really weighed in on H1N1, despite my general rage with anti-vaccination, and the obvious connection there. But right now it's the discussion du jour over on Skeptic North, and over on the related Facebook H1N1 info group. I've made my presence known over there, presenting information when I have it. But when it comes right down to it, this is not a subject - H1N1 specifically - that I as a non-medical professional know a lot of details about. And right now I am swamped with other work. Bad timing. I just don't have time to read up.
For the most part I've kept out of the discussions except for a few points that I am willing to hammer on as I am reasonably well versed in - they are anti-vax issues foremost, and not H1N1 specific - and staying away from the more complex concerns, leaving them to the pros we have in our court.
So, due to bad timing and a lack of specific information I have kept out of the detailed arguments - though I have read along. And holy smoke have some of the folk out there who are refusing the H1N1 vaccination (many of whom are not anti-vax in general) manufactured some complex arguments. I am truly not in a position to keep up right now. I'm just patiently waiting for the window for vaccination of my demographic to open up.
But it may be too late for that. This week two people who work in my office came in sick. WTF!!!??! I think that's bad news in a regular flu season. But right now? You have got to be kidding me. One of them was practically hemhorraging phlegm. Anyhow, guess what. I am not at the office today. Thanks guys, I guess I needed the day off.
But there's something a bit more disturbing happening. I may have mentioned that I have a friend who is a naturopath. She is someone who I have always been fond of, but there is a big gap in there in that she is both a ND and a Christian, so... not fond in the serious way. In spite of said fondness it's not an easy friendship due to the previously mentioned factors. We really just have to ignore our conflicting worldviews or not be friends.
Today she posted on Facebook that her boys are really sick. She was defiantly challenging H1N1 and touting the values of Vitamin C. All of a sudden I felt sicker than I am. It's never hit so close to home before, and if it is H1N1 that her boys have, this could be really serious. They of course are not vaccinated. Naturally I don't want her kids to be badly sick, but if they get better it's only perpetuating her belief system. All of a sudden the pernicious nature of that vicous cycle is really clear in an ugly way. I'm still processing this. There will probably be more no matter how this episode plays out.
I couldn't shoe horn this in further up in a more appropriate place.
On top of largely being on the outside of the H1N1 discussion in my immediate skeptical community - which I heartily defend, me trying to advance the cause without information would be distinctly un-skeptical and ironic - I had a series of posts for Skeptic North lined up. A two parter on hockey, which has already been posted... uh yes, a skeptical article on hockey. Yes it was silly. I felt sillier posting it in the middle of all of this. And this Sunday I've got a post ready for Hallowe'en... feels kind of lame posting this stuff when there's important things going on. I'm just saying....
The Death of Expertise
2 hours ago