Move over Benghazi, IRS, Fast & Furious, and Bill Ayers, because Ebola has arrived on the right:
The Ebola virus, which killed a patient at a Dallas hospital Wednesday, has become part of the conversation among politicians and pundits — in particular, conservative politicians and pundits. The virus has added heat to conversations about immigration and border control, as well as ongoing criticisms of the Obama administration and the government in general.
Among the claims being made is this one by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee: The idea that non-Americans will infect themselves with Ebola and travel to Mexico from which they will enter the United States with the intention of spreading the disease. I'm sure some people are scared by that scenario, but it's truly insane. There are easier ways to get in the U.S. with Ebola than to travel through Mexico even if there weren't, the fact that there hasn't been a single case of "Ebola terrorism" let alone sufficient amount of it to be effective is pretty good evidence that Huckabee's threat exists only in his mind.
But still, the fear mongering on the right cannot be contained:
One theory making the rounds is that liberals, including those in the administration, actually want Ebola to spread across America, as punishment for the sin of slavery — because Liberia, where Duncan was from, originally was designed to be a country for former America slaves.
Yeah, I didn't believe it either. Nobody could be that loopy, right? Except that's exactly what right-wing radio hosts Rush Limbaugh and Michael Savage are telling their audience. And apparently a lot of conservatives are lapping it up, which shouldn't come as a surprise: When the bedrock foundation of a political ideology is a rejection of science, and when the political leadership of the party representing that ideology stands to benefit by fueling fear, these kinds of theories take flight
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Ironically, it's actually created a bit of a problem for some conservatives, including Texas Gov. Rick Perry who initially
sounded a lot like President Obama in trying to reassure Texans that public health authorities would prevent the spread of Ebola after the first case appeared there. Now, however, Perry has figured out how to protect his right flank: By calling for
quarantine facilities at every point of entry anywhere in the United States, because above all else, we must be afraid.