Welcome to our little column! This next letter needs no introduction, so let's go!
Dear Republican, Some members of your party, most notably our dear Mr. Jesse Helms, have been offering as reasons for reductions in federal spending on AIDS wise little tidbits such as the following (as featured in Newsweek): "[It's] a disease transmitted by people deliberately engaging in unnatural acts." I have a number of problems with this argument. Perhaps Mr. Helms needs a lesson in how AIDS is transmitted. Maybe hemophiliacs were "deliberately engaging in unnatural acts"? Or is Mr. Helms referring to people like Mary Fisher, who contracted AIDS from her husband? Last time I checked, her activity wasn't considered unnatural. The other point I would like to bring up is that of people who smoke, or have a poor diet. They, too, were "deliberately engaging" in the aforementioned acts. Do they deserve lung cancer, or heart disease? Please enlighten me on your views. Disconcerted in Darby Dear Disconcerted, Let me address each of the issues you discuss. First, the question of hemophiliacs. Well, didn't they make the decision to accept the blood? And it cannot be denied that receiving blood from another person isn't the most natural thing one can do. Thus, Mr. Helms' statement applies perfectly to hemophiliacs. As for Mary Fisher, she doesn't count-even you know that her case just isn't the norm. Most people with AIDS aren't like her, or you, or me. As for your suggestion that people who smoke deserve lung cancer, or that people with a poor diet deserve heart disease, well, I am simply aghast. How could you even suggest that someone would deserve diseases as horrible as that? We in the Republican party believe that everything within our power should be done to prevent their suffering. Your comment was cold-hearted and completely inappropriate. Thank you for your letter. Sincerely, The Republican
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