Exotic diseases -- cholera, leprosy, the plague -- have appeared recently in NYC. The Bubonic Plague! Responsible only for the death of one third of the population of Europe in the fifteenth century, causing the only significant dip in the population of humans, ever.
Following up obliquely on my post earlier about Mayor Bloomberg's case of foot-in-mouth, one of the key figures in the American Irish Historical Society is Dr. Kevin Cahill Sr. One of the many hats Cahill wears is as a world-renowned expert on infectious diseases. Cahill was one of the first doctors to call attention to be paid to the mysterious new disease affecting gay men in 1980: HIV/AIDS.