Ebola Doctor Hates the Media and Politics; Is Neither Hipster Nor Hero

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NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 11:  Dr. Craig Spencer, who was diagnosed with Ebola in New York City last month, is viewed at a news conference at New York's Bellevue Hospital after being declared free of the disease on November 11, 2014 in New York City. Spencer, a 33 year old Doctors Without Borders physician, was diagnosed last month after returning from treating patients in Guinea. He became the first person to test positive for the deadly virus in the New York City and was treated in isolation at the hospital. Spencer's case started a controversy about voluntary quarantine after he travelled the city in the days after returning from Africa unaware that he was carrying the virus. After being released, Spencer he is expected to return to his apartment in the New York City neighborhood of Hamilton Heights.  (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Dr. Craig Spencer, New York's only Ebola patient.Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Dr. Craig Spencer, the only Ebola patient treated in New York, wrote an essay in the New England Journal of Medicine revealing that — though he was too busy trying to keep down a single cup of fruit to watch TV at the time — he knows all the jokey headlines, and he knows what people on the midterm campaign trail were saying about him. He is not pleased.

My activities before I was hospitalized were widely reported and highly criticized,” he wrote. “People feared riding the subway or going bowling because of me. The whole country soon knew where I like to walk, eat, and unwind. People excoriated me for going out in the city when I was symptomatic, but I hadn’t been symptomatic — just sad. I was labeled a fraud, a hipster, and a hero. The truth is I am none of those things. I’m just someone who answered a call for help and was lucky enough to survive.”

He would also like to remind everyone that although Ebola stopped getting media attention in the U.S. after the election, there are still many people in West Africa who have the disease.