Friday, September 17, 2010

Of Bedbugs and Whooping Cough...

The rage these days is bedbugs. They're suddenly everywhere, and a multi-billion-dollar industry is springing up to take care of the problem. For many years, the word "bedbug" was simply a reference made in a polite good-night admonition to not "let the bedbugs bite"; the threat or discomfort of the bedbug was something that was, in a way, made light of. Several generations of Americans have lived life comfortably without the discomfort of bedbugs. I think, in my whole life (43-plus years), I can barely recall of a single person I've known who's house was infested by the little bastards.

The average American home was probably more likely to have mice, hornets or termites than bedbugs.

But now, they're front-and-center. Bedbugs are everywhere, and no one seems to know why.

Well, let's be honest...everyone KNOWS why... they just don't want to say so.

We live in a world of international air travel, where it's not uncommon for people to arrive on these pristine shores from countries where the words "hygiene" and "cleanliness" have no local equivalent in about 1,100 languages. These people stay in our hotels, when they don't disappear altogether. They've more than likely brought bedbugs with them (amongst other things. West Nile Virus wasn't exactly a common phenomenon in New York in year's past, and now the City Spends millions on mosquito control). Legions of illegal immigrants pass through our borders everyday, carrying their clothes and bedding with them, and most likely, the filth of Mexico's barrios. Those immigrants then become the chambermaids in our hotels, the laundry workers, the cleaning staff.

Environmental laws and businesses looking to save a buck, no longer clean hotel sheets in hot water. DDT -- the wonder poison of the 1950's that killed everything from mosquitoes to New England Democrats, was banned because it might kill off some species of migratory birds -- was once used to eradicate bedbugs, too...and it worked. But now, we're told the bugs have developed a resistance to more-modern-and-safer pesticides (Tree Huggers take note: The bedbugs evolved, but the birds didn't!) and using DDT is now unthinkable and illegal.

And the bedbug population explodes. Literally. Now, the Solons of the Upper East Side are infested with bedbugs (probably brought in by the maid and kitchen staff they're not paying Social Security taxes for), and suddenly it's become a major problem. Here in New Yorkistan, we refer to them as Bloombugs, and unflattering reference to our Emperor...errr...Mayor -- a bloodsucking parasite that serves no obvious purpose except to feed upon it's host.

Of course to even suggest that foreigners, and especially illegal immigrants, are responsible -- at least in part -- for the return and spread of bedbugs, is to be branded an insensitive, racist douche. Let's just put it this way: there was hardly any mention of bedbugs in humdrum-work-a-day American life before 12-15 million illegal immigrants showed up on our doorstep, was there?

And if bedbugs aren't your cup of tea, there's always whooping cough...and measles...and polio.

These were diseases that were all-but-eradicated in this country in my lifetime. In fact, we were so good at eliminating these often-deadly childhood diseases that we had to make up a bunch of new ones to take their places, just so we could obsess over our children: food allergies, ADHD, lactose-intolerance, Autism-as-attention-getter. Influenza is a killer again, and not just your run-of-the-mill flu, we're talking killer Chinese flus that came about because someone fucked a chicken in Shanghai or something. We had just pretty much wiped out SARS (also brought by foreigners immigrating/visiting the West) and then they bring us a new version of flu! Reported cases of Malaria are on the rise in this country.

Just yesterday, the news was that the state of California alone was about to report a 50-or-so-year high in the number of children who had contracted Whooping Cough...and who had, subsequently, died from it.

Part of this is due, of course, to all the brouhaha over Autism; some mothers are willing to expose their children to deadly diseases because of unfounded fears about inoculations. These women are flat-out morons, and would probably buy beachfront property in Oklahoma. But, the majority of cases are probably due to the fact that most illegal immigrants -- and especially their children -- are probably not immunized against these diseases AT ALL, and the only time they get any sort of treatment is when they show up in the emergency room and die on the waiting room floor...very expensively...for want of a vaccination back in whatever shithole they climbed out of.

It's an old theme, I know: Immigrants bring disease.

Take a look around you: more bedbugs, more once-eradicated diseases, and every few years a newer-deadlier flu or syndrome comes out of Africa or Asia. Does this sort of unchecked immigration look like it's a good thing to you?

If you suggest a correlation between vermin, disease and The Foreigner, that makes you a racist, right? Those who make that charge usually have to do so in spite of the evidence.


toadbile said...

"Heirloom diseases" is a nice phrase for this effect. And DDT doesn't harm birds, Rachael Carson was as much a liar as any modern Greenpeace "climate disruption" activist. Peasants are dirty, whether they come from a trailer park in Narobi, Mazatain or Kansas City.
So amma blame Rachel Carson's fans for the typhoid in Nevada. That way i can dodge the racism charge for another hour or so.

Sabra said...

Good to know that snark never sleeps! Excellent post, Matthew. Bedbugs have been on the front page of our paper every day for weeks now... But nary a mention of the reason why - or how...