Surprise, surprise

[Smile when you smash that breast!]

OK, I have to admit that I'm late with this news. I found it as I was filing away a page from the Tribune about what your greenest options are re: shopping bags, diapers, coffee holders and the like. So this news is late, and it states the obvious. But it's always nice to have your world view or Weltanschauung validated, as long as you can forget that these are real people involved who are suffering. Oh, but we shouldn't forget.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released stats July 6 on breast and colon cancer screenings among people age 50-75--or middle age, according to my calculations. Among the findings:
-People with health insurance were more likely to get screened than those without.
-Minorities were less likely to have screenings. American Indian and Alaska Native women were least likely to get mammograms.
-Women with less than a high school education and women who were low income were less likely than others to get mammograms.

Interestingly, the Tribune gave the story seven lines and two charts, accentuating the positive: Screenings rise for 2 cancers. It's odd, though: I couldn't find the original story, which was from Reuters, online. I found a longer AP story on the Trib's web site. That one mentioned the variables of education and insurance, but not race. It emphasized that more people are getting tested for colon cancer, but the same percentage of women were getting mammograms in 2008 as they did in 2002. The New York Times ran a piece the next week based on a CDC update, emphasizing the negative: Gaps Found in Breast Cancer Testing, noting that equal rates of black and white women were getting mammograms, though fewer Native Americans. The Times did not mention income disparity .

This all goes along with my theory that if everyone were rich, we'd be much better off. Rich people are thinner and healthier and usually more educated. Our obesity problem would decline and we'd all fit into our airplane seats.