Saturday 19 January 2008

Mything the point

I can't let the Cairns Post get away with this cock up.

Last week they reported about a story of a young child allegedly stepping on a condom with his bare feet, evidently found under a bed in a Woree motel.

Whilst this would not be a pleasant experience, there are apparently no grounds that this was a proven fact. The hotelier to whom the complaint was reported says he never sighted the offending condom, and this was following a health inspection in the previous few days. He thought it may have been a ploy for a refund claim, as the mother wasn't there in the room.

Regardless, the cleaner could have missed this in the cleaning.

The Cairns Post boldly announced the name of the motel in which this alleged incident occurred.

But it gets worse.

A child lost sleep over this and now lives in mental fear that he has AIDS, an idea that surely could only have been put into his head by foolish uninformed adults.

Is this an indication that all the publicity and money spent on health information about this pandemic of more than 20 years has failed to reach the general public?

And it didn't take one, but two, to let this mis-leading statement go into the story. Why didn’t the Post writers who put the story together, Tyron Butson and Carenda Jenkin, contact a medical professional to get some correct information in order to present accurate information before printing such a shocking claim, even though it was from a twelve-year-old? It's rather obvious that neither know how to or how not to contract HIV / AIDS.
For the record, and let me make this perfectly clear: You can’t get HIV/AIDS from stepping on a condom!

However, you can be hugely misinformed by the sensationalism you read in the newspaper.

I feel sorry for the named motel owner.

I feel sorry for a child who may be permanently scarred by this incident.

I feel sorry for the readers or the Cairns Post who believe this rubbish they read.

I am pleased to hear that someone used a condom.

Please Mr Editor, next time you wish to print a ludicrous claim like this in the Cairns Post, I suggest you first telephone Joanne Leamy on 4050 6205 at the Sexual Health Service, Doll's House, Esplanade, next to Base Hospital.

You can also contact Kevin at QaHC. They're at 290 Draper Street or him on 4041 5451.

Both Joanne and Kevin will provide any journo researching such a delicate subject with appropriate and accurate information.

You may wish to check out this website about other absurd ways the public think about HIV.


Anonymous said...

You "forgot" to acknowledge that this article already appeared in the Cairns Post on Monday January 14 in the form of a letter to the editor from Dr Darren Russell of Cairns Sexual Health Service. Right down to the comment about being happy about someone using a condom.
Tsk, tsk.

Anonymous said...

"Farctman" ??? Sounds like Freebody's at it again!

Anonymous said...

One of Cairnsblogs "Quotes of the Day" appeared as The Cairns Post "Quote of the Day" the following day. Spooky, isn't it possums.