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Just Pray You Live To Learn

, , , , , | Related | January 5, 2021

Here in Australia, we have a fairly low infection rate during the health crisis compared to many other countries, mainly due to our fairly strict but not infallible quarantine methods. As a result, most of us do not know anyone who has been affected by the illness. Many of my friends are conspiracy theorists and spout drivel about how it’s just a hoax to control the masses.

It just reminds me of a discussion I had about another disease with my father after I discovered that he buried building rubble in the backyard.

Me: “I dug up some fibro pieces in the yard today. That has asbestos in it, hasn’t it?”

Dad: “Yeah, probably. It’s nothing to worry about.”

Me: “It is worrying, especially seeing as it causes asbestosis.”

Dad: “I don’t believe in that. I’ve worked with that stuff for years and don’t have any lung problems. It’s just a hoax, probably made up by lawyers to get money.”

Me: “Really? What about all those people who die from it?”

Dad: “I’ve never met anyone who has it, so it can’t be true, and just about everyone I know has worked with it at some time in the past.”

Within a few months, Dad’s best friend, who was in his late seventies, was diagnosed with incurable lung disease linked to asbestos. He had last worked with it at the age of nineteen. A friend of Mum’s was also diagnosed; hers was from a childhood game of using asbestos products as chalk. The final straw was Dad’s sister passing due to the disease. A couple of years after her passing, it was discovered that an insulation company had pumped loose asbestos into her ceiling illegally, after advertising that they used a clean paper waste product. Her house and many others had to be demolished; my poor cousin lost his mother, house, and all of her belongings due to this.  

I only hope that my conspiracy theory friends don’t find out the hard way, too, though it would have to take that to convince some of them. Dad definitely is a believer now.