by Danny Altman
Yesterday we suggested that the “swine flu” was not properly named. Well it seems that a lot of experts agree with us but they don’t necessarily agree with each other.
In a New York Times story headlined “The Naming of Swine Flu, a Curious Matter” it turns out that we were correct that this is a political football.
Officials in Thailand are calling it “Mexican flu.” Israeli government officials are also pushing this idea so ultra-Orthodox Jews don’t have to say the word “swine.” My guess is that there aren’t a lot of Mexicans in either country to offend, so that makes sense.
The World Organization for Animal Health is lobbying for “North American influenza” which lumps the Canadians, U.S. people (“Americans” properly would be anybody who lives in either North or South America), and Mexicans into one less-than-happy family.
And the Mexican ambassador to China, not to be outmaneuvered in this game of pass-the- virus, floated the idea that the disease arrived in Mexico thanks to a visitor from “Eurasia,” which he figured was a big enough area not to insult the Chinese.
Yes we could call it a day and name this the Nimby Flu, which of course stands for Not In My Back Yard. And some of the best submissions from yesterday were: Pigenza, Snoutbreak, Drafted by the Lions, the Michele Bachmann disease, and of course, The “It’s a slow news day so we’re going to scare the shit out of everyone with wildly irresponsible journalism by over-reporting on every case of flulike symptoms outbreak.”
As for us, we are sticking with the name Sex with Madonna because it is the coolest thing to say you have, but of course it brings with it some dangers of over reporting.