Third Party & Independents Archives

Mandatory HIV Testing

I’m torn… In New Jersey, the president of the state senate has introduced a bill that would require all pregnant women and newborns to be tested for HIV… again, it would require pregnant women to be tested for HIV. I’m not sure how I feel about this.

If this bill becomes the law of the land in the Garden State, it would be the first of its kind in the country. There are states that require health care providers to give mothers-to-be the choice of being tested, and there are even laws that require the testing unless specifically declined by the would-be-mother. But this would be the first to take the measure this far.

There are valid arguments on both sides of this issue...

First off, of course a woman has dominion over her body, just like any other human being (read: us guys). So my first reaction to this news was to shake my head in disbelief that little by little our civil liberties are being eroded away. No human being should be forced, under the threat of criminal proceedings, to take an HIV test. Completely ridiculous, right?

Not completely… there is the life of the soon-to-be child in the belly for whom this measure is designed to protect. An adult woman has the freedom of association to have consensual sex with any adult male (or female) she chooses… this is the way it is and the way it should be. The act of having sex will sometimes, planned or not, result in the beginning of a new life. The new life inside the belly of the woman does not have the freedom of association of choosing its host to carry it to birth… if it lands in the belly of an HIV infected woman, well… too bad little guy/gal. This measure will help intervene on behalf of that little guy/gal to get help faster to the unborn baby, decreasing the chances of it contracting the virus from the mother. Completely warranted, right?

Not completely… There is still the issue of the woman’s privacy. If she has committed no illegal act, what right does the state have to invade her body for any reason? Doesn’t this fly in the face of the Constitution’s clear ban on unlawful search and seizure? What wrong has the woman done to justify this?

And another thing… why are we ganging up on women? If it takes a man and a woman to create a little guy/gal, then why aren’t we requiring every sexually active male in Jersey to submit to an HIV test unless he signs a written affidavit saying he will never have sex with a woman? Wouldn’t that also help stop the transmission of HIV from mother to baby?

OK… I just made up my mind… while this measure is not completely ridiculous as it is designed with the best of intentions in mind, it is wrong. We must not start down the path of looking for an excuse to invade a woman’s body at every possible opportunity. Not only is this unlawful search, it is also discriminatory toward women… it is not the right thing to do.

Posted by Doug Langworthy at May 12, 2007 2:38 PM
Comment #220171

If they require everyone to be tested, then I’m for it. Otherwise no.

Posted by: womanmarine at May 12, 2007 4:09 PM
Comment #220176


it’s funny that this democrat is so concerned about the welfare of an unborn, that he would force a womman to be tested for HIV, but not concerned enough to stop her from killing this unborn child herself through abortion if she so chooses. it’s either her body or it isn’t, you can’t have it both ways. just more nanny state nonsense, as far as i can see, and in my opinion it would be a violation of her 4th amendment rights. the greater good does not trump a persons constitutional rights. people are responsible for thier actions, and should pick and choose carefully who they choose to get physicaly involved with.

Posted by: dbs at May 12, 2007 5:50 PM
Comment #220177

dbs… thanks for bringing that point up, too… I totally meant to talk about that as well but… well… I forgot! ;-)

But seriously… yes, I also have a hard time wondering how someone who is pro-choice would be in favor of this… of course, that is my own perspective and I would welcome comments that might shed some light on that?

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 12, 2007 5:59 PM
Comment #220178

A democrat attempting to protect an unborn life…..WOW. So by introducing this bill is he admitting that it is in fact a life before the delivery of the baby?

You shouldn’t try to understand the liberal mind. One thing for sure, they are torn between keeping the ability to kill unborns, but dangit any chance for more control of individual actions sure sounds nice too.

Posted by: andy at May 12, 2007 7:20 PM
Comment #220182

The whole AIDS thing has been silly and PC from the beginning.

We are loath to admit that AIDS is almost completely a lifestyle disease. People who engage in certain behaviors are likely to get AIDS, those who avoid those behaviors have about the same chance of catching AIDS as they have getting hit by lighting. Anybody can get AIDS, but most people will not.

This is not a gay/straight thing. A monogamous, non druggy straight couple or a gay couple that stays faithful virtually cannot get AIDS, but the disease has a very definite demographic profile.

We want to do universal testing because we want to maintain the myth that everyone is at risk of getting AIDS. It is true that everybody is at risk, but for most people that risk is negligible, while for others it almost approaches a certainty. It makes sense to target efforts at those most likely to be victims and (let’s be honest) perpetrators, since anyone who has AIDS and has sex with an uninfected individual is more dangerous than a drunk driver.

Re consensual relations, a person who has AIDS or has reason to believe he/she has AIDS is morally bound to inform any prospective sexual partner. It should be a crime to do otherwise. It certainly approaches murder or at least reckless endangerment.

Any good mother would want to know if she had AIDS to try to save the life of her child. I also have trouble with the coercive aspect of the law, but I feel no sympathy for the dispicable woman who would avoid the test.

Posted by: Jack at May 12, 2007 8:40 PM
Comment #220183

I agree with womanmarine’s comment. Aside from that, mandatory testing of all pregnant women in the state twice during their pregnancies sounds extremely expensive.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 12, 2007 8:41 PM
Comment #220186

So womanmarine and Adrienne, etc…if it’s mandatory, then is the State picking up the tab?? I saw nothing to indicate so, therefore, it’s not only one more invasion of a woman’s body by the government, but an additional taxation on her.
How quickly we can be pushed back to the position of chattel…..

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 12, 2007 9:24 PM
Comment #220188


You couldn’t be more wrong. My sister’s children’s dentist was HIV positive and some of his patients became positive before this was known. My sister’s children were tested and all patients were notified and offered free testing.

It can and does frequently happen, especially among health care professionals, patients receiving blood products such as transfusions (I was one and was told that the blood I would receive could not/would not be tested for HIV. There are other examples but these cover quite a range.

Keep your arrogance and ignorance of the topic to yourself.

Posted by: womanmarine at May 12, 2007 9:45 PM
Comment #220189

very rare that I agree with Sandra… here’s lookin at you! ;-)

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 12, 2007 9:48 PM
Comment #220192

85% of AIDS cases in the U.S. are in major cities. Which if I wasn’t a pc person I would think drug use and lifestyle might be contributing factors, but I am very pc so erase that last part.
Here is a link showing how this country should be panicked by thoughts of non-glove wearing dentists. Basically the worst (or best) chance to contract AIDS is Miami, where .00045 percent of the population has it. Where I live .00006% has it. In smaller cities and rural areas much less.
Basically, I don’t use drugs, sleep with prostitutes or men so I personally am more worried about lightining.

Posted by: andy at May 12, 2007 10:37 PM
Comment #220193

Why the hell does anyone care about AIDS all of the sudden? It’s killing all the right people— by plutocratic lights anyway: fags, people of color, druggies, and poor working whites who either don’t have insurance or have it and can’t afford the deductibles and the $30 out-of-pocket to darken some AMA-besotted crank’s door (laughingly known as a doctor). Did I mention black people? Sure, they’re dying in disproportionate numbers, but it says here in the Big Book of GOP Southern Strategy that the bastards deserve it.

“…there is the life of the soon-to-be child in the belly for whom this measure is designed to protect. “

From creation to birth, the finest care anywhere. After that, welcome to survival of the fittest, baby!

You liberals and compassionate conservatives (all fourteen of you) really need to get with the program.

Besides, sex is dirty.

Posted by: Tim Crow at May 12, 2007 10:41 PM
Comment #220195


Your dentist was problably engaging in risky behavior. He had the duty to be more careful. Dentists and health care professionals now take precautions. He was criminally neglegent.

The case of the dentist in Flordia who passed AIDS to five of his patients was an example of a very evil man who essentially murdered five people. I do not know the details of “your” dentist, but you were not likely dealing with a good and honest man.

Before transmission of AIDS was understood, people got it through transfusions etc. The nation’s blood supply is now safe.

I know it hurts the PC ears, but it AIDS is clearly a lifestyle issue.

It is not ignorant to say that a person who does not use intravenous drugs or engage in promiscious lifestyles has almot no chance of contracting AIDS.

If we had addressed this properly 20 years ago, we might have avoided many deaths. Instead we perpetuated ignorance and disinformation. We made it into a civil rights issue instead of a medical one and it cost many lives.

If you had smallpox or plague do you think it would make sense to be more concerned about protecting you from discrimination or protecting potential victims from you?


We spend more on AIDS research than on almost any other disease. Please do not try to make this a race or prejudice issue. If your contention about victims and the power stucture is correct, the powers that be are remarkably generous, great and good.

AIDS is a lifestyle issue. When you talk about poor working people w/o insurance, it means nothing at all. It is a red herring. The same goes for every other group you mention. It is behvior, not status, that puts you at risk for AIDS.

Posted by: Jack at May 12, 2007 11:11 PM
Comment #220196

“AIDS is a lifestyle issue. When you talk about poor working people w/o insurance, it means nothing at all. It is a red herring. The same goes for every other group you mention. It is behvior, not status, that puts you at risk for AIDS. “

Your position on just about anything is “a red herring.” And if you think this crisis (for that’s what it is) is about ‘behavior’, your santimonious ruthlessness is showing again, in keeping with the Gipper’s. Ronnie and his ilk ignored this while it tore a terrible swath through the gay and poor of this country through most of the eighties. A behavior problem—you make me sick to my stomach.

The thirteenth century is too good for your crowd.

I stand by my statement.

Posted by: Tim Crow at May 12, 2007 11:20 PM
Comment #220197

Imperial wars bought and paid for with deficit spending and the blood of the working classes is a “behavior problem”, too.

When are we going to fix that one??

Posted by: Tim Crow at May 12, 2007 11:23 PM
Comment #220199


Whether or not a person has insurance will not affect his ability to get AIDS. There is no causal relationship. That is why it is a red herring. You mention it, why?

We made a big mistake in the 1980s by treating AIDS more as a civil rights issue than a health issue. That was not the gipper’s fault.

AIDS is not dependent on status. Gender, race, income or sexual preference make no causal difference. Risk is almost entirely related to behavior. Are you surprised when a heavy smoker gets lung cancer? Are you surprised when an avid sky diver suffers a broken bone? Are you surprised when drunk drivers get in more accidents? Would you consider these things race, income or gender issues?

Posted by: Jack at May 13, 2007 12:39 AM
Comment #220201


You know that we spend more on AIDS research than on any other disease. Maybe you are angry because we have not found a cure. The news I have for you is that in spite of research, we still have not cured cancer. People still die of heart disease.

What do you propose? What would you have done in the 1980s. The civil rights guys fought effective public health measures. I do not konw if quarantine would have worked but we could never even try that option.

It is easy to be angry. Being angry for the right reasons and to the right extent is hard.

Posted by: Jack at May 13, 2007 12:51 AM
Comment #220203

Whoa there buddy! See this is exactly why we need to do studies on the liberal mind. There is so much we need to figure out.

Anyway, when has Jack ever given a lecture on morals? I guess I could hop on a plane and find the nearest “AIDS ward” but I’ve got a job, and really what would it accomplish? Can I go to the hospital down the street and visit with cancer patients? Maybe the elderly (like I already do)? Could that be a compromise?

By the way Jack I didn’t know you counted beans. Is this a hobby?

Posted by: andy at May 13, 2007 2:33 AM
Comment #220204

By the way, I’ve been on this site about a year and was wondering if anyone had any thoughts on a question. I’ve seen about 4-5 people banned and they all were left. What does that say about the compassionate, smartest people in the room lefties?

Posted by: andy at May 13, 2007 2:40 AM
Comment #220205

Are they not smart or is it compassionate?

Posted by: andy at May 13, 2007 2:44 AM
Comment #220207

All WB Writers: Hey I delete my email bank every semester as I have a student email account. So I don’t know the email to email the writers string. Moreover it hasn’t let me log in to Movable Publishing Format for over three days please someone email David or someone so I can know whats going on.

Posted by: Richard Rhodes at May 13, 2007 3:23 AM
Comment #220212


Yes. You propose being angry. I am interested in solutions that would save lives. You prefer to remain angry. One thing that moved me from left to right was that I prefer solutions over passionate intensity.

We know that the disease is terrible. You are looking to blame and be angry. That will not do anything to alleviate any suffering. In fact, ignoring the way the disease is transmitted and the behaviors that facilitate it will cause much more suffering.

We fight lung cancer by encouraging people not to smoke. We fight heart disease by encouraging people to exercise and eat better. In those cases, we identify the risk behaviors and seek to change them. We do not make it a rights issue. That is what works. We do not have a cure for AIDS or a vaccine against it. An effective strategy is avoidance. When a heavy smoker gets lung cancer, it is not his “fault”, but we recognize that he is not a random victim. We know that a non-smoker has much less chance of getting lung cancer. With AIDS, there are several types of behavior that are very high risk. If we can get people to just say no to promiscuous sexual behavior & intravenous drug use, we will diminish AIDS. Shouldn’t this be our public health goal. Isn’t this our public health goal. Why are you so angry about it?

If we had taken this common sense view of AIDS years ago, we might have avoided filling some of those AIDS wards. Instead, the rights folks insisted that we treat AIDS like a civil rights issue.

Posted by: Jack at May 13, 2007 9:55 AM
Comment #220220

AIDS is public health issue. You can no more halt sexual behavior than you can dictate people stop breathing. This is something the hypocritical RIGHT WING CONSERVATIVES refuse to admit despite the very large numbers of their own who demonstrate utter hypocrisy on this issue, unable to control their own sexual activity but, condemning others theirs.

The AIDS transmission process is multi-dimensional, and requires a multi-facted approach. Identifying the sources of AIDS is absolutely without equivocation, the first and necessary step to controlling its spread. Having identified the sources, there are many approaches to helping the person who is the source to prevent its spread and for many abstinence is not an option, as many Conservatives have proven in our headlines. Education of course is a huge tool in that medicine bag. But, one must identify the sources and target them for the education that will prevent the spread.

This is like a no brainer. Unless one is a Conservative, then all kinds of cognitive dissonance comes into play.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 13, 2007 3:03 PM
Comment #220221

“The nation’s blood supply is now safe.”

Can you show me statistics? Or where this is understood? It is not, to my knowledge.

Jack, you might want to take some of your “behavioral” crap to heart and change your behavior. You seem to think everything is the result of “bad behavior/bad choices”. You couldn’t be more wrong, and trying to place blame instead of helping is just hypocritical, no matter the boasts you post about what a good, efficient boss/employee you are.

Posted by: womanmarine at May 13, 2007 3:09 PM
Comment #220223

I’m not sure what you are arguing. Jack stated, disturbingly, that AIDS is the most funded disease (why not cancer).

Who condemed anyone? If you don’t want lung cancer you may want to decide against smoking. If you don’t want to contract AIDS you probably shouldn’t use drugs or have irresponsible sex. How the hell is this offensive, and if you say it is what should be said? Tell everyone that we are all equally at risk? Why do we need to lie, whos feelings are we protecting this time?

Are you all angry just because some people aren’t scared of the disease? I can’t figure out how that could be a bad thing. But there are lots of things that come from the left that are confusing I guess.

Posted by: andy at May 13, 2007 4:07 PM
Comment #220224


“This is something the hypocritical RIGHT WING CONSERVATIVES refuse to admit”

hypocracy lives on both sides of the political aisle. claiming to care about unborn children, but at the same time allowing the murder of the same by abortion is the ultimate hypocracy.

“for many abstinence is not an option,”

granted it is unrealistic, but other than abstinence, there is no sure way to absolutely prevent the spead of aids. if you are infected and engage in sexual activity the risk of infection is always there.

forcing all pregnant women to be tested for aids is a violation of thier right to privacy. you’de do better to attempt to target those at high risk, such as prostitutes and known drug addicts, but you still can’t force them, only encourage them to cooperate.

who is going to pay for this ? do you force the woman to pay for testing she doesn’t want in the first place, or do you stick it to the tax payers ?

everyone seems to be attacking jack for stating the obvious, the only way to prevent the spread of aids, is through responsible behavior, but for some reason this obvious fact seems to have angered some.


“You couldn’t be more wrong, and trying to place blame instead of helping is just hypocritical, no matter the boasts you post about what a good, efficient boss/employee you are.”

how do you know he’s not helping ? he could donate large amounts of money to aids research and you’de never know. this is pure speculation on your part, and there’s always somthing to blame for any particular crisis, seems you just don’t like where he’s placing the blame. you could say that about katrina, but many are more interested in placing blame there. what does his employer status have to do with anything ?

Posted by: dbs at May 13, 2007 4:18 PM
Comment #220228


Let’s start with simple pragmatism. What is it that you can control and change in your life? You cannot change the past. What you CAN change is your behavior. That is the power we have. Many of the outcomes we experience in life are the results of our behaviors. Our choices are always constrained, but we always have choices.

AIDS is almost unique among the bad things that can happen to us in the great amount of influence individual behavior has. A non-smoker still has a significant chance of lung cancer. A person who eats right and exercise still can get a heart attack. A person who refrains from certain risk behaviors simply does not have much of a chance of getting AIDS. Beyond that, unlike some other behaviors, refraining from these behaviors is free.

Re public health, the main method we have to fight against AIDS is behavior modification. The only way we (as society) can reduce the incidence of AIDS is to get people to behave in a different way. Do you have a different solution?

Re the blood supply - it has been generally safe since the early 1990s. If you have confirmed cases of anybody in the U.S. getting AIDS from contaminated blood, you might want to inform the CDC. Look it up.


Please see above to Womanmarine - I agree with most of what you say. We both know that we need to change behaviors among the risk groups. Why it right wing and hysterical when I say that?


Thanks for the support. One thing, it is not ALL cancer. We divide cancer into various types. AIDS research gets more money per incident than any other disease. Cancer kills many times more and the total for all types of cancer is higher.

Dbs et al

Re abstinence, you really do not need total abstinence to make a big dent in AIDS. Monogamy is a perfectly safe strategy for couples, but AIDS like any disease will be wiped out if each victim infects less than one other person. To really spread it has required many partners. AIDS is not that easily transmitted. When people have studied the spreaders of AID, they have found hundreds of partners. This very silly and irresponsible behavior. If people cannot remember the names of the people they “partnered” with, maybe your behavior is irresponsible and they should stop. Find another hobby.

Posted by: Jack at May 13, 2007 5:03 PM
Comment #220231


While the blood supply in the US may be safer than most, it is not entirely safe. This from the CDC:

Currently, the risk of infection with HIV in the United States through receiving a blood transfusion or blood products is extremely low and has become progressively lower, even in geographic areas with high HIV prevalence rates.

And it is known that my sister’s dentist was not engaging in “bad behavior”, he had had a blood transfusion. Most of the testing being done now on the blood supply is relatively recent, and apparently not foolproof.

Extremely low does not mean absolutely safe.

Posted by: womanmarine at May 13, 2007 5:45 PM
Comment #220232

Were all gonna die from global warming anyway what difference does it make. Why is everyone so worried about a .000000001% chance of getting AIDS.

Posted by: andy at May 13, 2007 6:10 PM
Comment #220233


Most people do not get many blood transfusions. Most blood transfusions are safe. We have a chance of many things. Lighting strikes kill dozens of people every year. I understand that some people are killed when they try to shake money out of vending machines. Your chances of getting AIDS from a blood transfusion in the U.S. today are vanishingly small, although not zero, of course.

If you make a list of things to worry about, you can put this near the bottom.

All life is statistical and there is a risk of many things. But we would be foolish to treat all risk equally.

And how it is known your sister’s dentist didn’t engage in risk behavior?

Posted by: Jack at May 13, 2007 6:56 PM
Comment #220243


“Ten cases of sepsis caused by Yersinia enterocolitica were reported to the Centers for Disease Control between Mar 1991 and Nov 1996. In all cases, the source of the bacterium was contaminated red blood obtained through blood donations.”

From 2005:

“Over the last 20 years, astounding reductions in the risk of viral infection via allogeneic blood have been achieved. As a result of this success, bacterial contamination of blood products has emerged as the greatest residual source of transfusion-transmitted disease.”

Note the word reductions, not eliminations.

Behavior modification is rarely possible by the individual for them self. Do a little homework on this and you will discover that self induced behavior modification for addicting behaviors has an incredible bad effective rate.

BTW, driving up taxes on cigarettes reduces smoking amongst mostly volunteer smokers, not long term addicted smokers. It helps reduce the numbers who start smoking but, is far less effective long term smokers. In fact, there is a wide tax free marketplace for cigarettes on the internet today as a result of taxing cigarette smokers. State revenues are dropping far faster than the rate number of ex-smokers is increasing.

Rising gas prices won’t stop people from driving to work, to the stores to shop, or from taking vacations. The data has shown that already from last Summer and this Spring. So much for taxation as a very effective behavior modifier where addiction or need is concerned.

Posted by: David R. Remer at May 13, 2007 7:57 PM
Comment #220246

So David

Maybe I worry less than you do about those ten cases in five years among nearly 300 million people. There are plenty of risks to worry about.

Re AIDS, what do you propose? What do we do? We do not have a cure of AIDS. None is on the horizon. If you do not think we can affect behavior, the situation is hopeless. I disagree.

Posted by: Jack at May 13, 2007 8:36 PM
Comment #220249

If I may interject… why are we debating on the risks of contracting HIV? Okay okay okay… Jack is right in that the risks are miniscule if you do not involve yourself in risky behavior… he is also right that 10 cases in five years is not a number that would make me lose sleep worrying about it if I needed a transfusion… but that said, all the worry-warts out there are technically correct in that it IS possible to contract HIV (no one contracts AIDS, they contract HIV which leads to AIDS) through other than “lifestyle choice” methods… OKAY?!?! Can we all agree on that?

I don’t think anyone has actually posted on what the original column was written, which is whether or not the state of NJ should be forcing pregnant women to be tested? Can we gat back to the core issue here, folks?

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 13, 2007 9:17 PM
Comment #220250

I don’t see a problem with it as long as it does not go any farther then the medical personnal that are suppose to see it, not the neighbors, family or friends. Not even the governor, or the state health board. If it turns out to be positive then it is up to the Doc/Patient, NOBODY else to decide how to handle it.

Oh fyi, most hospital test for HIV if you go to them anyway, to protect the workers there. Unwritten consent is given when you request treatment, and I am glad because my wife is a RN, and it is for her protection.

Posted by: KT at May 13, 2007 9:22 PM
Comment #220251

KT… yes, most hospitals do test… and there is a fundamental difference between a private organization, like a hospital, requiring testing and the govenment doing so. Hospitals have every right to require HIV testing… the government does not have the right to unlawfully search a woman’s body.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 13, 2007 9:28 PM
Comment #220252

Doug, I was wondering when you would notice. Sorry about the mistake in wording, I don’t plan on contracting the disease so didn’t know that.

As far as the question, no more laws.

Posted by: andy at May 13, 2007 9:34 PM
Comment #220261

Doug…you actually had agreed with me ( I think ) earlier on here, but the conversation got off track a bit after that.
By the way, I did mark the date on the calendar….. ;)

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 14, 2007 12:25 AM
Comment #220266


Tim Crow’s posting at 1:46 a.m. on May 13 is about as personal an attack as I have read. Are you going to sanction him?

Posted by: John Back at May 14, 2007 6:46 AM
Comment #220275

John Back,
No doubt Tim Crow has now been banned for his comments to Jack. I must also admit that this really depresses me, because I’ve always considered him an intelligent and well-informed poster to this blog. So, let me go on the record here as someone who hopes he’ll be given a chance to return — especially since this is the first time I ever remember Tim breaking the rules for participation.

You just can’t let the kind of hard-hearted callousness we’ve seen displayed in this thread get to us when we make our replies. Half the time I suspect these people are only trying to purposely wind us up by acting arrogant and superior (and woefully uninformed). We simply can’t play into their hands by going ballistic.

As someone who did volunteer care-giving to AIDs patients in a hospice setting for many years, I can’t tell you the number of people I helped who had contacted AIDs from their own spouses who had cheated on them with prostitutes. This number is extremely high, so whenever someone claims that bad personal behavior is the only factor that leads to people contacting the disease, I know they are talking straight out of their asses.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 14, 2007 11:32 AM
Comment #220278

John Back, you are quite right. Tim Crow is banned from posting further comments here. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

Posted by: WatchBlog Manager at May 14, 2007 11:56 AM
Comment #220279

Sandra… don’t worry… I’m sure it is just an anomaly that we agree on something… We’ll be back at odds with each other before we know it and the world will be restored to its proper balance! ;-)

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 14, 2007 12:10 PM
Comment #220286


85% of AIDS cases in the U.S. are in major cities. Which if I wasn’t a pc person I would think drug use and lifestyle might be contributing factors, but I am very pc so erase that last part.

You may or not be a PC person, but you clearly jump to your own conclusion on moral values prejudices, not statistic basis, even if you take one as starting point or your argument.

For every contagious deceases, you will see way more cases where human density is the highest, whatever the virus. Period.

Virus is a virus is a virus. AIDS don’t care about moral values. He use every human fluid exchange he could to spread itself.

Only people make this a moral issue. Or not.

Basically, I don’t use drugs, sleep with prostitutes or men so I personally am more worried about lightining.

Do you have unprotected sex in the last 20 years?
Yes? There you go. You just know half of the AIDS equation…
Still better than lightining, though.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 14, 2007 1:51 PM
Comment #220294

There is still a lot of off-subject discussion here……so IF this passes and IF we must subject ourselves to another demand of the government, and IF we prove to be HIV positive, then what??? IF we have been subjected to this disaster by unclean instruments through a dental procedure, or tainted blood through a medical procedure, or just one lying s.o.b. in an intimate encounter, then what????? IF we didn’t intentionally expose ourselves, IF we were innocently infected, then perhaps would we be able to consider an abortion without all the polictal/religious/public fury????? This, in my opinon anyway, overlaps into other areas. What’s the answer to the big “whatif” question here???? Has anyone thought that far ahead?…or do we just sit back and wait for someone else to enact another law on us ?? I thought the right to own and control people as property went away with the abolishment of slavery…….

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 14, 2007 3:36 PM
Comment #220366

obviously there are many vectors this disease can take, and no gaurentee that anyone will or won’t contract it. but the easiest way to stack the odds in your favor is to not engage in risky behavior in the first place, such as intraveinous drug use, and unprotected sex with multiple partners. there’s also education. passing another law that violates someones body or privacy won’t change that. where do we go from there ? once the state has this information, whats to stop them from making it public if they so choose ? do we ste up a public data base so you can check your partner first. once this doors opened it can’t be closed again. IMO this law is just more nanny state BS.

Posted by: dbs at May 14, 2007 10:49 PM
Comment #220384


You scare me but I will rebut,
I have no problem with homosexuals and actually have been good friends with two. The first one I worked with and he became sort of a mentor of mine. I was 22 he was in his 50’s, and we would grab a beer or nine after work and everything he said made sense (must have been a conservative). I hung out with him and a few others a couple months before someone told me he was gay, and it didn’t take one second for me to decide he was an amazing great man and my good friend, so fu** them. He died about 4 years ago and I will never stop being sad, he was a great man, more of a mans man (no jokes honestly) you will ever find today.
The other was part of a group I hung out with about once a month. I knew he was gay from the start and he acted somewhat accordingly, but we cracked each other up. I gave him a ride home one night and in a drunken state, he told me he had AIDS (maybe he was just HIV), we hugged and talked for hours, and I never once was scared of his disease.
I guess what I’m saying is I don’t know why the fact I’m not scared of the disease would offend a liberal…. I’m trying to understand and I’m sure I probably won’t like the response.

Posted by: andy at May 15, 2007 1:55 AM
Comment #220387

andy, I’m not Adrienne, and wouldn’t ever try to respond for her, so am just tossing in my two cents’ worth here.
I don’t think there is necessarily anything wrong with us fearing either Aids or HIV….it is often fear that drives the need for caution. We can’t “catch” most things just by sitting next to, or visiting, or hugging people. It’s often just human nature to shun something or someone that we don’t understand or trust. I personally think it’s important for those unfortunate enough to be affected by either condition, to know that they aren’t BAD because they are affected ( or infected ).

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 15, 2007 2:18 AM
Comment #220390


Thanks for the reponse, I’m a mess (not really but kinda), I could never judge others, it’s stupid anyway. Why do you fear AIDS but not fundemenalist muslilms? Why do you only seek what is wrong with America, it’s pretty good I think.

Posted by: andy at May 15, 2007 2:51 AM
Comment #220392

andy….speaking only for myself, I’d have to admit that I’ve probably always feared the unknown. A dark corner in a room as a kid….wondering what was under the bed…(or who). Fear just manifests itself into different things as an adult, but still mostly that which is unknown.
Now with that said, I’m not sure how, or where you got the idea that I 1) don’t fear fundamentalist Muslims, or 2) that I only seek what is wrong with America.
I also am not sure why you think it would be offensive to “us” for you to not be scared of HIV or AIDs. Perhaps it’s just the cavalier attitude some take regarding the disease. But then we go off in another direction again, from the main subject of this thread.
And why in the world are you “scared” of Adrienne???????

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 15, 2007 3:53 AM
Comment #220394
AIDS is a lifestyle issue. […] It is behavior, not status, that puts you at risk for AIDS.

That true for every other contagious deceases.
Except AIDS is *the* deadly STD, and as previous ones in the past, this lead each time to point lifestyle as being the main risk, even if the VIH can enter your body by several ways, people will focus only on the *dirty* one as always: sex or drugs.

We had in the 80’s a AIDS blood bank scandal in France. Many people get AIDS by blood transfusions. Sadly, people were caring more about these ones that the ones who get it from having sex with the former ones.

Sex is not dirty. But sex is still a dirty word in our christian cilivisation. It turns a contagious decease into a lifestyle decease.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 15, 2007 5:06 AM
Comment #220408

Sandra, great responses to andy. Philippe great posts in this thread.

“I guess what I’m saying is I don’t know why the fact I’m not scared of the disease would offend a liberal…. I’m trying to understand and I’m sure I probably won’t like the response.”

Andy I’m not offended. I’m glad you’re not scared of gay people, or petrified of this disease and that you’ve known and liked people who had or have it. That being said, you should always be cautious enough not to have unprotected sex with someone unless you’ve first gone and gotten tested for HIV together. What folks like myself, and Tim Crow and others are taking issue with in this thread is the idea that people with HIV and AID’s should be automatically stigmatized and slapped with the “bad behavior” label. It is ridiculous to do so because this disease has been contracted by so many people in so many ways, that this should never be the automatic assumption.
As Philippe just said, this has erroneously and cruelly turned “a contagious disease into a lifestyle disease”, which in turn promotes callousness and discriminatory behavior amongst people who don’t have HIV, and causes a great deal of shame in the sufferers. These folks have more than enough to deal simply by having the disease, they don’t need all that on top of it. This is especially true since a great many live for a very long time before they become sick enough or weakened enough to die from it.
In my view, this is not a liberal vs. conservative issue at all. It is simply a tragic human issue, and as such and as always when that is the case, true compassion and kindness is the thing most needed, not a lot of harsh judgments or preconcieved prejudices.

PS. Don’t be scared of me. It’s true that I don’t suffer fools gladly and I don’t hold back what I see as the truth, but if you’re not a mindless fool or a troll, you needn’t be hesitant to engage me in discussion or debate in this blog.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 15, 2007 10:56 AM
Comment #220411

Andy, one more thing:
“Why do you fear AIDS but not fundemenalist muslilms?”

I don’t fear AIDS. We should be cautious and preventative when it comes to terrorism — whether planned or perpetrated by fundamentalist muslims, or other people.

“Why do you only seek what is wrong with America, it’s pretty good I think.”

I’m someone who seeks to look at the good and the bad, and therefore, to be someone who is not easy to fool. I think America is great in many, many ways, and bad in many others. But despite my ability to recognize this and see both sides, I love my country, and most of her people. I want what is truly best for us, and have no interest in defending what is bad simply to be, or be viewed by others as, a mindless American cheerleader where or when that isn’t warranted.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 15, 2007 11:08 AM
Comment #220441

first comment in a long while….

Jack is right about the behaivoral impact on contracting aids, no doubt.

but you just can’t force someone to get a test they don’t want. this is a disease you can live a long normal life with, and invading someone’s privacy seems like a huge cost in order to protest fetus from something that isn’t gonna change.

Posted by: martiniwtz at May 15, 2007 4:41 PM
Comment #220510


seems no one is interested in talking about mandatory HIV testing. so much for staying on topic.

Posted by: dbs at May 16, 2007 11:45 AM
Comment #220515

dbs… yep… There seems to be a lot of debate on just exactly how one can contract HIV in the first place… I kind of thought THAT debate ended in the 80’s… I am happy that nearly everyone who DID comment on the actual issue brought forth here agreed with me… then again, maybe it’s just because I’m always right… right Sandra?

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 16, 2007 12:19 PM
Comment #220542

Don’t push it Doug…..maybe it’s just a full moon….. ;)
Thanks for the acknowledgement dbs…I’ve tried to ask what the results, repercussions or next steps would be to mandatory testing.
Of course, there is something to be said about invisibility….

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 16, 2007 3:16 PM
Comment #220559


you got the same answer i did. i think they call it dead silence. hmmm. no takers i guess…. ;-)

Posted by: dbs at May 16, 2007 5:29 PM
Comment #220569

Sandra and dbs… RE: “next steps?”

What would the next steps be after mandatory HIV testing of pregnant women? Easy… it would open the door and make it leagal to search and probe anyone’s body for any reason the government deemed necessary. I am against this on soooooo many levels… not the least of which because we are picking on pregnant women here… but there’s more to it than that… even though I’m just yer’ average 30-sumthin’ bloke of a guy, this law actually endangers my rights as well, and your rights (that was addressed to whomever is reading this), too… think about it… if “they” (whoever “they” are!) can find a reason to unlawfully search a pregnant womans’s body, then the floodgates have opened and any reason that “they” deem to be for “the greater good” to search my body will be done…

I ain’t no lawyer… shoot, I don’t even play one on the TV, but I know this much from my 7th grade civics class… the Constitution strictly forbids this. The pregnant women that this bill would seek to violate have done nothing wrong to arouse the reasonable suspicion of the government.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 16, 2007 6:09 PM
Comment #220575


Thanks for the decent response. By the way I was joking about being scared. What I meant was I’m usually about 180 (hmmm no degree symbol) from your views, but you are prepared and present your views very well (and it makes me

Posted by: andy at May 16, 2007 6:28 PM
Comment #220576


i agree, but we already have invasion of body for the greater good, it’s called gov’t mandated random drug testing. i know about this very well. i already deal with this BS, and don’t want to see this practice go any further. mandatory HIV testing is just the next phase of government sanctioned invasion of our bodies. you can bet the politicians who write these laws will no doubtedly exempt themselves from participation. can you imagine the indignant outrage if congressman and senators were forced to take random drug tests. bet there’d be quite a few looking for anither line of work. WOULD YA LIKE FRIES WITH THAT ? sorry for getting off topic.

Posted by: dbs at May 16, 2007 6:39 PM
Comment #220593

Okay, so the floodgates have been opened, and “they” can demand a testing. What comes next?????? Do they just want to know for the hell of it, or is there a plan beyond that? I already asked if terminating the pregnancy would be a consideration? (I can hear all the pro-lifers waking up now.) Would the mother be required to carry to full term and deliver an HIV baby, who from birth is condemned to live and die with it? When and how do “we” then stop that child from infecting others through their lifetime?
Sounds pretty ridiculous, huh? But shit, if you’re gonna author and try to enact a law, you might want to consider what the hell happens if it passes.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 16, 2007 10:09 PM
Comment #220604


“Would the mother be required to carry to full term and deliver an HIV baby, who from birth is condemned to live and die with it?”

thats a tough one. i guess you’de give it the same consideration you would carrying a baby to term knowing it had some other possibly fatal disease, or birth deffect. i think abortion is wrong, but that said, thats my opinion and one others make for themselves. i don’t believe it should be illegal, as out lawing anything just sends it underground. i think it’s a shame that abortion tends to be used as a form of contraception, rather than giving life and the love of an adoptive family. there i go getting off topic. to answer the other question. that should be left up to the mother. and a bitch of a decision it would be.

Posted by: dbs at May 17, 2007 12:01 AM
Comment #220605

well i’m off to spend a week with the grandson for his first birthday. see you all next week. take care.

Posted by: dbs at May 17, 2007 12:32 AM
Comment #220607

Sandra… good questions… All I can do is shrug my shoulders and hope this law doesn’t get passed in the first place.

Posted by: Doug Langworthy at May 17, 2007 12:36 AM
Comment #220608

I can actually consider that someone might have thought it to be a good way to prevent or keep from perpetuating HIV/AIDS……just no depth to the idea. That, and the fact that it’s time for someone else to be in the bucket instead of us all the time.
I’m with you…….will just hope it doesn’t get beyond someone’s desk !!!!

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 17, 2007 12:47 AM
Comment #220613

It’s a stupid law that needs little discusion except it’s presented by a dem. Which is a whole nother story…dems protectors of unborn lives, somewhat laughable.
Like I said earlier in this, it’s a tough one for libs., on one hand another law to protect us idiots, on the other it stands to maybe strike a blow to abortion.

Posted by: andy at May 17, 2007 1:52 AM
Comment #220615

….too bad you can’t see the implications, andy, and I thought we’d already agreed that HIV/AIDS doesn’t have political boundaries.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 17, 2007 2:02 AM
Comment #220620

It’s not the disease it’s the law I have a problem with. If I was a woman Sandra, and was going to have a baby, I think I could decide on an HIV test or not (I think somewhere on here it said hosp. do this already so I really don’t see it). But really, I don’t like many laws.

Posted by: andy at May 17, 2007 2:58 AM
Comment #220646

We’re talking about the decision being taken away from you….and being made mandatory by the state. Sorry, you don’t get to exercise your right to a choice !!

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at May 17, 2007 1:21 PM
Comment #220670

I guess making it mandatory will break the WHO and UNAIDS policy regarding HIV testing. According to these principles, it must be confidential, under counseling *and* with the informed consent.

Mandatory is stupid. But one of the possible benefit is that it’ll bring everyone back to the same level regarding HIV which, based on many comments here, seems to magically avoid everyone except the bad behaving ones. Thinking this way is as stupid as making testing mandatory.

Instead, if not already the case, just make it confidential and free - as in speech *and* as in beer. And reinforce effort to keep people informed about HIV & AIDS facts.

Among them, here one that could cast another light on what the most risky behaviors are: for one exposition to a HIV source, your risk to get infected is
- 90% for blood transfusion,
- 25% for mother-to-children transmission,
- 0.67% for needle sharing,
- up to 0.5% for unprotected anal intercourse,
- 0.30% for percutaneous needle,
- up to 0.1% for unprotected vaginal intercouse,
- up to 0.01% for fellatio.


“Up to” because the receptive person is more exposed than the insertive one. That’s why, BTW, heterosexual women are more exposed to HIV than heterosexual men.
Obviously, whatever the way, the more exposures you get, the more risk you take. While blood transfusion and mother-to-child transmission are the most risky due to the volume of infected fluid exchanged, people do unsafe sex and drugs *way* more often during their lifetime.

The important keywords here are “unsafe” and “often”.

But people seems to consider “sex” and “drugs” are the important keywords. How weird, then, that safe sex and drug behaviors doesn’t lead to HIV infection in the same proportion???

Regarding HIV, better focus on what’s matter instead of what’s prejudices.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 17, 2007 8:12 PM
Comment #220678


this is a disease you can live a long normal life with

You don’t know the side-effects of following daily a tri-therapy, do you?
Calling this normal life is quite a shortcut I won’t make.

invading someone’s privacy seems like a huge cost in order to protest fetus from something that isn’t gonna change.

Then you must consider the cost even higher, because you’re wrong saying it wont/can’t change anything.
A seropositive mother will transmit the HIV to its child in 25% of cases. The virus is way more dangerous in a baby or young body, as its immune system is not yet large and strong enough.

But when it’s detected during/known before pregnancy, HIV transmission can be reduced today below 2% in western countries, thanks to drugs treatment, the earlier, the better.

I’m not for mandatory HIV test. But I’m for HIV test promotion.

I’m fully for informing mothers about it benefits, and what difference it could make, because it can be huge. More than 10 times less risk to transmit your HIV, if you happened to be infected, to your child, this it the kind of difference future mothers should knows.

The best way to handle a risk is to know about it as much as possible. Regarding deadly contagious decease, what should be mandatory is keeping people fully informed, so they can’t escape their personal responsability with a “I didn’t knew”.

Posted by: Philippe Houdoin at May 17, 2007 9:45 PM
Comment #221334

With the exception of one person, this is the first

time I have witnessed a very nice group of people

coming together like a family, discussing a very

serious problem. With that said, with this type

of a discussion, for a variety of reasons such as

perhaps, a personal contact, can an will bring

out uncontrollable anger. I like Adrienne, would

hope in a case like this, that the Web.Mgr.

be able to show some compassion towards Tim Crow.

Thank You all
for an enlightening debate.

Posted by: DAVID at May 26, 2007 1:26 AM
Comment #277139

I think it is a good idea to have expecting mothers tested for HIV (too bad it cannot be anonymous results). I do not agree to force people to get tested, but I do believe all women should get tested before giving birth. If they find out they are HIV positive, they can almost eliminate (less than 1% chance) the chances of baby getting HIV by following the CDC guidelines (C-section birth, 6 weeks of AZT treatment for baby and mother) and making sure the mother doesn’t breast feed (HIV virus can be transmitted through breast milk).


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Comment #401484

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Comment #404238

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Comment #404678

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Comment #408054

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Comment #411566

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Comment #413175

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Comment #417195

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Posted by: john vivian at June 10, 2017 10:28 AM
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