President Biden has ordered the de-stigmatization of the Monkeypox virus once and for all. The World Health Organization (WHO) is set to change the name of the virus to “MPOX.” Sources indicate that Biden officials have nagged the WHO to make the name change and have threatened to adopt a new term without their approval should they not move quickly enough. The administration believes that the name “monkeypox” carries a stigma for ethnic people.
It’s no surprise that the Biden administration focuses all its efforts on something so menial and unimportant to most Americans. The WHO was already working on this before the insistent nagging came into play. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of WHO announced in June that the organization was working with partners to change the name of the monkeypox virus.
Another WHO representative said that naming diseases should avoid offending cultural, social, national, regional, professional, or ethnic groups. On Wednesday, WHO will rename the monkeypox virus to “MPOX” to reduce any stigma surrounding the virus. But this comes after months of threats from the Biden administration to rename it unilaterally since the organization wasn’t acting fast enough for the administration’s taste.
The Foreign Press Association, Africa registers its displeasure against media outlets using images of black people alongside stories of the #monkeypox outbreak in North America and the United Kingdom. pic.twitter.com/u32yWLELJg
— The Foreign Press Association, Africa—FPAA. (@FPA_Africa) May 21, 2022
The WHO reported that they traditionally act as global coordinators, including declaring international health emergencies and naming diseases. But the POTUS worried that the virus’ name deepened stigma among ethnic groups and slow movement towards the rename was hurting the vaccination campaign.
The vaccination campaign for Monkeypox started over the summer. But it’s more likely that people just aren’t interested in getting another vaccine and have lost trust in the administration’s unwavering advertisement campaigns on public health. Besides, contracting Monkeypox isn’t the same as Covid. It is not a widespread issue among every person.
Among those calling for the name change are LGBTQ+ activists who had called for the renaming of the widely publicized disease in the spring. The virus was discovered in 1958, but of course, it is only getting attention now. Activists called the name “monkeypox” imprecise, saying it plays into racist stereotypes about Africa and is detrimental to the global response.