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'Dangerous Direction on AIDS': Gann-Dannemeyer Initiative

August 06, 1988

Thank you for the rational and compassionate editorial "Dangerous Direction on AIDS" (July 17) objecting to Proposition 102, the Gann-Dannemeyer initiative. We were personally appalled when we first heard about the bill. It is evident that its only purpose is to legalize discrimination against members of our society who desperately need our help and understanding.

We would also like to point out another, far more insidious initiative in the works, the Block-Davis initiative, Proposition 96, which would allow the forced HIV testing of anyone who may bite, spit, scratch or transfer bodily fluids to a police officer, firefighter or emergency medical personnel. Of course, confidentiality would be virtually nonexistent, and "bodily fluids" will take on new and interesting definitions. It does not confine itself to the irrational discrimination of gays and IV users, but opens the door to random forced-testing for the entire population.

The fact that these propositions even qualified for November's ballot should greatly distress anyone remotely concerned for their own human rights. To condemn and punish AIDS victims and/or AIDS "suspects" (and eventually terrorize the entire population) is an irrational and panicked attempt to destroy the disease by destroying the people. Most people with the virus are reasonably healthy and can survive for many years as productive, tax-paying citizens, but it seems that both propositions would prefer to make them a burden to society by turning them into criminals. It is so sad to see that people with AIDS are victims not only of the disease, but also victims of ignorance, hatred and discrimination.

MARY and ROBERT FRANKLIN

North Hollywood

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