Waterboy waxes wroth:
“So a gay man with AIDS is a “loaded gun”, now? With the “potential” for harming others?”
Based on what the New York Times was saying about behavioral tendencies and transmission rates, I don’t know if we’re talking about “potential” so much as “probability”. Perhaps someone who pays more attention to this subject than I do can actually work out the percentages. But keep in mind that it was not me, but Larry Kramer, the well-known AIDS activist who now has the disease himself, who asserted that gay men are “murdering” each other.
Is a heterosexual man with anthrax a “loaded gun”? A heterosexual woman with Legionnaire’s Disease?
Actually, if you stop and think about it, loaded guns are not only perfectly legal but Constitutionally protected as well. I don’t recall any Amendment specifically protecting diseased penises, but I can have another look and see if I can find one hiding in an emanation somewhere… although I suspect it’s more likely lurking about in a penumbra.
The burden of proof should not be on those who wish to use proven public health measures to eliminate AIDS, but on those who wish to defend the right of one individual to transmit a lethal disease to another individual. The significance of the New York Times article is that even some of those who have long defended special treatment for AIDS carriers are beginning to throw in the towel.
As I mentioned in the comments, I don’t actually take any issue with allowing people to experience the predictable consequences of their actions. For the last twenty years, the gay community has argued vociferously for special treatment of its signature disease. It appeared to be working for a while, now there are some signs that it will not continue to do so. I find it very interesting that it is precisely those who are most vulnerable that are the very ones who insist on continuing to allow the disease an environment in which it will flourish.