Night Owl Mk. II

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Boldfaced statements are parts of the original essay (or a subsequent reply) to which the respondent has directed his comments.

Italicized/emphasized comments
prefaced by (R) are those of the respondent and are presented unedited.

My replies appear under the respondent's comments in blue text and are prefaced by my initials (MB).

(R) I have to agree to part of what you say, there is nothing special about AIDS, save that it prevents a free lifestyle from being more free.
(MB) Any lifestyle ("free" or not) has its rewards and its consequences. The level of each, either on its own accord or in comparison to the other side, should be used to govern the practice of that lifestyle. The lifestyle choices that face the highest probability of AIDS as a consequence must provide some mighty strong rewards. Otherwise, why would anybody knowingly risk debilitation and death? That's part of the reason why it may be somewhat reasonable, but not very feasible, just to say "If you don't want to get AIDS, then just don't [insert risky behavior here]".

(R) It may also be true that it shouldn't have the notiriety that it does except that some famous and well liked people died of the illnesses brought on due to the onset of AIDS-such as Arthur Ashe, Rock Hudson, Freddy Mercury-and sponsorships by celebrities such as Elizabeth Taylor and Elton John.
(MB) AIDS certainly is not the only affliction that has affected celebrities or for which celebrities will champion the cause. There is something else that make AIDS "special" and I don't think it's being too cynical to repeat my original opinion that it is the efforts of a very vocal, well-organized and well-funded special-interest group. I can't think of any other cause that can claim the same strength of support.

(R) There is a lot being done in the field of cancer research, but cancer is not caused by one substance or virus, where AIDS is brought on by one, the Human Immuno Virus(HIV). Since it is brought on by one virus it is much easier to study and hopefully find a cure if not a useable vaccine.
(MB) That would be the case if not for HIV's ability to change or mutate into many different forms -- some of which the human body cannot naturally defend against. A single vaccine would, therefore, be ineffective in the same way that a single influenza vaccine can't eradicate or control all the various types of that disease. The efforts of medical science to fight AIDS must be combined with education and responsible behavior on the part of those most at risk.

(R) I agree with what you say about the loud cries for a cure or better treatment for the virus but it is more easily transmitted than cancer, bronchitus, MD, or many others I'm sure.
(MB) None of those are examples of a contagious affliction (although some forms of bronchitis may be viral). The fact is that it is very difficult to transmit AIDS without the recipient having willingly participated in some known risky behavior. It's not like catching a cold from somebody.

(R) Hopefully thru the research of this virus and its illnesses a better understanding of our immune system and improvement of it will occur.
(MB) I couldn't agree more!

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