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Letter: Quarantine complaint ignores big picture

Health officials say a 5-year-old New York City

Health officials say a 5-year-old New York City boy who recently traveled to West Africa and had a fever does not have Ebola. Credit: AP / Mark Lennihan

One can easily sympathize with the frustration endured by those few forced to undergo the inconvenience of complying with the any enforced Ebola quarantine protocol ["A U.S. focus on Africa," News, Oct. 30].

Complaints that their rights are being violated, however, are invalid. When they believe the public's safety is threatened, elected officials have the authority to make unprecedented decisions. The Ebola virus is such a threat.

Based on what we know, the quarantine precaution is a tool that might prevent the spread of this life-threatening disease. Hopefully this will provide medical researchers with the time needed for the emergence of another Dr. Jonas Salk.

The frustration and inconvenience endured by those few forced to comply with quarantines are unfair, but seem a small price to pay.

William F. Haffey, Massapequa