Catholic World News

L’Osservatore Romano chides last decade’s medical alarmism

July 29, 2011

An Italian neonatologist known for his staunch defense of the unborn believes that a “self-sufficient culture that is diffident towards others” has developed a “tendency towards panic” in the past decade.

“World crises have been unleashed with ‘Mad Cow,’ in 2001, SARS in 2003, Avian flu of 2005, swine flu of 2009,” and now the European E. coli scare, writes Carlo Bellieni.

He adds:

The Avian flu, according to a March 28, 2006 article in The New York Times, was predicted to cause from 5 million to 150 million deaths, whereas actual deaths were registered at around 300; the Swine flu saw a similar end, but not before causing States to purchase millions of doses of vaccine, which were left for the most part untouched, because the Swine flu proved to be less lethal than your average seasonal flu.

Bellieni notes that Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger wrote in 1989 that “liberalism and illuminism want to insinuate us in a world without fear; they promise to do away with every type of fear … When one tries to completely eliminate fear, without any residue, repressed fear shows up in many guises, as a fundamental anxiety… In our time, these new anxieties germinate and assume in many ways the form of collective psychoses.”

“It is urgently necessary to shift the weight of the rich West’s phobias to those who are really suffering epidemic illness, which has always devastated the poorest, and of which industrialized and powerful nations--short-sighted and distracted by often unjustified anxieties--have only a minimum awareness,” Bellieni concludes.

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  • Posted by: JP810 - Jul. 29, 2011 8:36 PM ET USA

    The L'Osservatore Romano full text by Carlo Bellieni is an excellent and cogent analysis of the general phobias by the liberal media. Count "Global Warming" as another! Professor Patrick J. Michaels and Dr. Roy Spencer in his latest book, "Blunder," does justice in dispelling and deflating the hot air and phobia of "Global Warming."

  • Posted by: rpp - Jul. 29, 2011 5:45 PM ET USA

    While much more eloquent, I have had similar thoughts about our America's growing need to be "safe" and insulated from all risk. I cannot help but find Dt. Bellieni's statements quite compelling.