Humanities Blind Spot.

The things that I found interesting was the definition they had for public health, top ten leading causes of death, and the success of global health. I found the definition of public health interesting and surprising because they said public health is a negative. As soon as I read their definition it made sense to me right away that if nothing happens then it is at its best. I found it was interesting that the biggest cause of death in the U.S. and Worldwide was heart disease. After I saw the list I was surprise that cancer wasn’t the leading cause of death because of how vicious the diseases is. Finally the success of global health was interesting was because I didn’t know that the life expectancy around the world is about 80 and is rising. We live for a long time in this day and age.

Article One: Battling Pollution On Our Lands. Article Here. Published on September 2016.

The article is about the various companies from the oil industry polluting the river water and the many pollutants being dumped near the Ponca Nation in Oklahoma in the United States. There is a lot of injustice and discrimination going on at the reservation and what Mekasi Horinek describes as “environmental racism and environmental genocide”. The Ponca Nation and some people from a neighboring community are having long term medical health affects like cancer due to all the pollution going on. The reservation is located at the south end of Ponca city along with the low income community. There the city put their municipal dumping site on their burial ground a the Ponca people’s most sacred site on the reservation. The EPA and other various government agencies have done nothing to help the Ponca people. All the EPA has did was water testing and even then they couldn’t figure out the source of the pollution, while Horinek can pin point it to the fracking industry who has been draining the water out and putting back the waste water from fracking. A quick overview of what fracking is; it’s a harmful way to extract natural gasses from the ground that not only hurts the environment, but also the people living there. All of this blatant disregard for the the Ponca people and the environment is disgusting and frustrating that this can be allowed to happen. There was a class action lawsuit that went through and gave finical compensation to some people allowing them to be moved. Even then they are still sicken with long medical affects and having to move people from their homes that they have been living on for generation for causes of your fault is wrong.

Article Two: The Hawaiians: Health, Justice, and Sovereignty. Article here. Published on March 2000.

The group involved was the indigenous people of Hawai’i when they had thriving population before James Cook visited them. They were located in what is today the state of Hawaii which is the eight island chain in the pacific ocean. Because they lived on an archipelago isolated from the rest of the world James Cook and his crew was amazed at the health and population size of the people of Hawai’i. This is quite ironic as they were the downfall of their population size and health. Since the Hawai’i people lived in isolation for so long they were never exposed to the deadly diseases that the rest of the world has faced. When James Cook and crew first arrived to Hawai’i they were previously sick with Syphilis and Gonorrhea which has been widespread in England. Once they left Hawai’i the diseases they brought with them were already widespread among the Hawai’i people. At the time they probably couldn’t see it, but time and time again we see the travelers bring diseases from around the world to the “new world” which devastates the indigenous population. Shortly after James Cook’s discovery of Hawai’i the population dropped 85%. We see the same thing happen when Columbus visited the new world and when the colonist from England met the Native Americans when smallpox ran wild. I hope we learn from history and become cautious when meeting new living things on the final frontier.

Article Three; Spraying Crops, Eradicating People. Article Here. Published on December 2002.

In this article the indigenous people of Columbia are affected by toxic chemical ariel spray to kill the plants being grown to make cocaine and heroine. These people are from Latin America in the country of Columbia. The health concern that was brought up was the ariel spray to kill the plants are actually also harming the animal life and the people who lived there. They noticed that animals like birds whom were there predominately suddenly disappeared after the spraying started. Once the public in the United States learned of the chemical spraying they started pressuring the U.S. congress to investigate further to make sure this is up to code with health regulation and follows columbian law. After the EPA testing they found that the spray was up to U.S. standard and there was no danger to the people and the environment. Although they did admit that there is a chance for “acute eye toxicity”. Not only is the spraying affecting the health of the people and environment it is also indirectly affecting their culture. Some think about leaving their ancestral homes while others are altering their live styles.

When it came to reading and writing about these articles I found it difficult to stay focused and answer the questions. As I learned more, I passionately got caught up with the harm and disrespect for human life and the environment. I found myself expressing how upset I was with companies putting their interests first before human beings. This is also a success that I had I found for in no time I was writing this blog post.


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