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Blame and empathy for a bereaved mother

September 27, 2005

Re "A Mother's Denial, a Daughter's Death," Sept. 24

Christine Maggiore needs look no further than her own mirror for the cause of her daughter's death. Maggiore's arrogance and denial are incomprehensible. How dare she question why less fortunate children survive and hers had to die. Eliza Jane didn't have to die. Maggoire had access to medical care that the less fortunate do not.

She arrogantly chose to ignore HIV treatment and has the nerve to question why "children with far less -- impatient, distracted parents, a small apartment on a busy street, extended day care, Oscar Mayer Lunchables -- will happily stay?" These children live, Ms. Maggiore, because unlike you, their parents do not suffer from an overabundance of hubris.

NORA CASTILLO

Whittier

*

Maggiore's incredible work challenging assumptions about HIV was dismissed as nothing more than claiming HIV doesn't cause AIDS. Much of her work is about questioning the science that leads to an HIV diagnosis to unnecessarily label people as ill. HIV tests do not identify the existence of the virus called HIV; the tests only detect the presence of antibodies assumed to be in the bloodstream in response to the virus.

Your article reported Eliza Jane had been examined multiple times before she died and had clear lungs, yet the Los Angeles County coroner's office report stating she died of AIDS-related pneumonia went unquestioned. Just before she died, a doctor found only an ear infection, yet readers are left with the impression the parents are guilty of something just short of murder. Instead of continuing to report the "Activist Mom in Denial; Girl Dies" angle, I pray The Times will see fit to follow up on this story with some modicum of objectivity.

JEFF VAUGHN

Encino

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