In 2006, a total of 77 out of the state’s 102 counties were found to either have West Nile-positive horses, mosquitoes, humans, or birds. There were also 215 human cases of the West Nile virus. Of those 215 cases, 10 people died last year in Illinois.
Neither health department surveillance nor the medical literature supports the widely held perception that giardiasis is a significant risk to backpackers in the united states. In some respects, this situation resembles (the threat to beachgoers of a) shark attack: an extraordinarily rare event to which the public and press have seemingly devoted inappropriate attention.
I admit that I don’t really know what they feed all those cows fattened up in pens and turned into taco fodder. But every time I read a report about where meat like beef really comes from, I wind up realizing that meat is an everyday environmental disaster. I once read that 50% of the water used in America goes to raising cattle. Then we feed them all this horrific junk feed and stuff them full of hormones so they’ll grow faster, bigger, fatter and meatier.