Notes from a small island
A weblog by Jonathan Ali

Tuesday, January 04, 2005  

There is a practice in our little island Trinidad--I don't know if it obtains elsewhere--when the flu is going around, of informally giving it a name, not unlike the way hurricanes are named. The name is topical, often connected with world events (our penchant for attaching remote drama to ourselves, according to Naipaul) and not always chosen with the greatest sensitivity: for example, after the events of 9/11, anyone who came down with the flu was said to have the Bin Laden.

Well there's a flu currently making the rounds, apparently named the Tsunami. Now Trinidadians aren't exactly the most politically correct people (sometimes refreshingly so) but surely this, as harmless as it may seem, is going too far. Of course there's nothing that can be done; there's no body you can appeal to for a name change. I just wish that sometimes we as a people could be a bit more sensitive to the suffering of others. Perhaps a collective resolution for 2005?

posted by Jonathan | 9:50 AM 0 comments


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