Ebolaas a Moral Panic
1.Moral panic and why it is understood as a moral panic
Themoral panic under study is the Ebola epidemic of 2014 and 2015. TheDallas hospital decided to release an Ebola patient from West Africa,Liberia, who later died of the disease. The incidence initiated aheated debate in the United States on how to deal with the potentialoutbreak. The case made the US people to bar people from the affectedregions from getting into the country. The matter is a significantcause of moral panic since the fear was escalated about the actualthreat since Ebola is not as contagious as other diseases such asinfluenza that claim many lives. The recommendation to bar admissionsfrom the countries of risk was impractical as there are many tiesconnecting people all over the world in the region. However, therewere strident objections regarding the anticipated invasion of theassumed folk devils.
2.Who are the folk devils?
Thefolk devils in the case were the people from West Africa. The casehas the media and the politicians as the instigators. The media madethe case public and the way the situation was elaborated. There wasinflicted fear among the citizens since no one desires to fall sickor die. The steps were taken by the government to enforce laws toensure that the people from the affected region were also barred anincitement as the people perceived the situation as a criticalcondition.
3.Social backgrounds leading to moral panic
Asocial background that resulted in the moral panic is the commonattitude. Considering that such a pandemic leads to losing of lives,there is a prevalent belief that the disease is a threat and that itshould be prevented by all means. Discovery of the threat in a regioninstills fear as people cannot know who has the disease and thepossibility of contracting the deadly disease.
Thecruel discrimination against the people from the affected regionsaffected the world relations with the area. Other countries startedalso reducing ties with the assumed folk devils and individualsboarding flights from the area thoroughly screened. Others canceledtrips to the area and also the economic deals, hence affecting theeconomic activities of the area. The perception may not clearovernight, hence may have some lasting effects on the West Africa.