During a week-long action held last month in the places Hilton, Merkinch, Muirtown Basin and Kirkhill in Inverness as well as in Nairn (Scotland) three mothers were caught while leaving their dog’s droppings on the ground. The mothers were taking their dogs and their children out for a walk and left the faeces of the animals on the ground. The action was held by the Highland Council to make sure that people really cleaned after their pets. Dog’s faeces can be very dangerous to children because it could be infected with the toxocara canis worm, which can harm human eyesight. Fortunately, the majority of the people cleaned after their pets. The three mothers that did not could expect a punishment.
I really applaud this action of the Highland Council and I think all the countries should take this as an example. There is nothing more disgusting than walking with your kids on the sidewalk trying to make yourself a way between the dog’s droppings. Sometimes people even let their dogs run into the fields where children play and do not do anything when they see their pets doing number two. Some of them do not even clean it! I think that kind of people should get a big financial punishment, like 100 Euros for each dropping they did not clean. That would teach them very quickly.
Government launches swine flu advert The UK government has launched an advertisement where UK citizens are informed about how to help prevent infection by the swine flu virus. The most important thing people can do by their selves is having a good hygiene. Cover your face with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then throw this tissue away and wash your hands with an anti-bacterial soap immediately to kill the virus. If we all do this, the chance of getting infected by the virus would be smaller. The UK government also posted pamphlets with information about the new virus to all the citizens of the UK.
My opinion Launching this advertisement is a very good action of the government of the UK. It is good to keep people informed about how to act in a situation like this. But there is another aspect that we should consider. The government of The Netherlands has not done something like this yet and I think they have done it very consciously: they do not want Dutch people to panic. Does this mean that the UK is now panicking about the swine flu? Or are we Dutch people being kept uninformed? I really do not know what is the best choice. What is the best solution to prepare a country for an upcoming pandemic: keep the people informed (and taking the risk that people panic and overreact like it is happening in the USA) or keep them ignorant and let the virus develop its own way? Like always: in Holland you relay in your own capability of finding a solution when it comes to health care, but I am afraid a paracetamol will not help against the swine flu... I am just a very worried mother.
This is a short advertisement where famous people like Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig, The Dalai Lama and lots more join normal people like schoolchildren in the UK and Africa to make viewers conscious about saving the rainforest. At the end of the advertisement comes the surprise: the Princes of Wales also make an attempt to convince us about the importance of saving the rainforest with not too much words. Fortunately, Prince Charles makes a better work of it at the end of the commercial. After seeing it, we all have a cosy feeling and want to adopt a frog immediately.
Hopefully this is a successful campaign to help us improve the environment. I always applaud the fact that famous or important people enlace their hands for a good cause. In this case I have a doubt. Two questions arise in my head after viewing the Princes’ advertisement: do they really care about the environment? Or is this a very well prepared campaign to repair the image of the Princes who have not been behaving properly the last years? I have not decided yet. And you? Watch the commercial on the link below and make up your mind...
First US face transplant revealed Despite the fact that this is a news item in the US, I have chosen to write about it because it made a deep impact on me. Connie Culp, 46 years old, was shut on her face by her husband in 2004. The bullet destroyed almost all the bones of her face. She was left without nose, mouth, teeth and cheekbones. Plastic surgeons operated her several times but they could not really give her hope for a new face in a short period of time. Dr Sieminov and another eleven surgeons operated Ms Culp for the last time using the face of a donor woman who had recently died. The surgery took 22 hours but it was a success. Ms Culp can eat and breathe now in a normal way. During a press conference she played tribute to the family of the donor woman. My opinion My feelings about this news item are divided. In the first place I am thankful that we live in an age where science can help us to improve (and even save) our lives. In this case, it is wonderful that somebody can get a face again after such a tragic accident. On the other hand, we have to deal here with the ethic and psychological effects of this kind of surgeries. Should we use the faces (or other organs) of dead people to help others? Is it not very shocking for the family of the donor to see its face in someone else his/her body? What about the patients? Are they not going to fall into a depression after seeing their selves in the mirror and not being able to recognize the person they see? What about the children of the victims and other family members? For me, the idea of “wearing” the face of a dead person seems very morbid, but I understand that people like Ms Culp are very thankful and happy with it.