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Tips on Avoiding Unwanted Valet Service

September 25, 1990

I was deeply disappointed to read Joe Bell's column in today's Times (Aug. 17 "A Look at the AIDS Quilt"). It saddens me that one of your knowledge could let himself be taken in by the sob stories about those who have AIDS. I have never believed that the disease was a curse from God. A loving God does not curse his creatures. However, like a good parent, he has warned us all about certain things that may be harmful to us. He gave us the Commandments along with a number of other guidelines, and one of them was a warning against sodomy.

We warn our children not to go out and play on the freeway. If they disregard our warning and are struck by a car, is that a curse or the natural result of a dangerous practice against which they were warned? There are any number of things against which we have been warned: overeating, getting too much sun, swimming out beyond our depth, driving too fast, playing with fire figuratively or factually, even throwing oneself off a cliff. All these things and more can and often do result in serious injury or death but they are not curses. They are the natural result of doing what we should not. In the same way the transgressions against the Commandments and the admonitions of a kind and loving God may, and often do, cause disaster. When that happens he cries out, "I got away with it over and over. How come I (didn't) this time?"

Honestly Joe. Don't you have to admit that their lifestyle is aberrational? We do not have to condemn them. They do that themselves. There is no need to punish them. They do that themselves. But to build them up as heroes or long-suffering martyrs is to sell our whole civilization down the river. I feel the greatest sorrow for the parents of these individuals, but I do not believe that it is doing any good for anyone to place so much heart-wrenching emphasis on their plight. We have so many terrible diseases to learn about and try to cure, so many tragic catastrophes that need our attention and help that I think the media and show-biz hype about AIDS are completely misplaced.

BARBARA G. THOMAS

Garden Grove

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