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Publicity And Perspective



Publicity is a powerful molder of perspectives. This compelling image by André Carrilho – intended to illustrate the racial nature of concern surrounding Ebola – communicates both negative and positive messages. From a negative perspective, some diseases causing profound suffering do not receive worldwide media attention until those in wealthy nations are infected. HIV, polio, and now Ebola are examples. While this fact can be used as evidence of racism or nationalism, it is also true that wealthier nations in response have mobilized massive resources to combat these diseases, both on their own soil and in remote corners of the globe. No matter how well intended, such mobilization could never be realized by the low-resource nations themselves who first felt the painful stings of HIV, polio, and Ebola.


From a positive perspective, publicity over the plight of economically depressed people has repeatedly tugged at the hearts of thousands of well-resourced individuals. They respond by giving, by going, by generously offering themselves – often with little heed to potential adverse consequences. Richard Randolph, INMED Hybrid Course Graduate and US military physician, provided healthcare among Syrians fleeing the conflict in their motherland. Last month he also announced, “I am going to Liberia – Yes, I know that is one of the countries that is effected by Ebola. That is why I am going.” How did Dr. Randolph know? The power of publicity, molded by his own very healthy perspective.

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