Newspapers all over the world shared a top story in their Monday editions, the swine flu. I understand that there is concern that a lot of misinformation is going around via new electronic gossipy devices such as Twitter, and I have nothing authoritative to add to the serious subject of the swine flu. But I was perusing a site I have on my favorites by the Newseum that displays front pages all over the U.S. and all over the world. Most of the papers carried the swine flu as the lead story and others had it prominently displayed. The Japan Times (English edition) headline said: Swine Flu in Mexico Sparks Global Panic. I thought that was a little over the top, perhaps (above that newspaper’s masthead is the slogan: All the news without fear or favor).
From Minnesota, however, the Duluth News headline read: Flu Threat Real, but Don’t Panic. The Buffalo News ran the story below the fold with a headline that read: Nations Gird to Avoid Flu Pandemic.
Most of the newspapers had photos of people in Mexico City wearing face masks. A newspaper in Germany ran a photo of Mexican soldiers armed with automatic weapons and wearing face masks with a headline that said: Soldiers Looking for Sick (that seemed ominous).
One in Vienna had a photo of a violin player in an orchestra wearing a face mask, but I don’t know if the photo was in Vienna or Mexico. But a violin player photo from the city famous for violins seemed appropriate to me.
My German is not good, but I do know some Spanish. The headline in Reforma out of Mexico City, the heart of the Swine flu crisis, read: Federal District Lives in Suspense. An accompanying photo showed a religious procession with people wearing masks carrying a replica of Jesus on the cross.
And I hope I am not spreading misinformation, but it seemed the headline below the main story said something to the effect that “they knew since April 2.” I do know that I heard a story on the CBS Evening News that said workers on commercial hog farms in Mexico (some owned by U.S. companies) had reported getting sick for some time.
By the time most people read this blog it will be Tuesday, and I don’t know what the updated assessment will be, but I know I am going to avoid crowds and keep using that hand sanitizer.
You can see the front pages of newspapers all over the world by Googling newseum front pages. (Newspapers are not dead yet!)