“America’s 50 Worst State Legislatures”
Hat tip to Mother Jones. The article is here .
Comments Disabled To "Best Headline of the Day"
#1 Comment By John McKeown On December 5, 2012 @ 1:41 pm
I only read the first couple of paragraphs and stopped when the author belittled the legislators explanation for the origin of the GRIDS/AIDS/HIV epidemic here. According to , among other sources, the movie (and I the believe book too) The Band Played On, which was about the beginning of the disease and the search for the virus, the sickness here began in the West Village in NY City and Castro district in San Francisco, and was traced to an airline steward who was infected in Africa. The disease did cross the animal/human threshold. Whether he had sex with an animal, or he had sex with a human who sex with a monkey, will never be known.
Highlighted in that movie is the resistance of the homosexual community to municipal efforts to close the bath houses, disease vectors.
Apparently, all this information is now politically incorrect.
#2 Comment By C. Van Carter On December 5, 2012 @ 5:24 pm
Tennessee has a balanced budget and ran a surplus in most recent fiscal year, but Tennessee gets “worst legislature” because some legislators won’t lie about homosexually transmitted disease or embrace transvestism.
#3 Comment By YIH On December 5, 2012 @ 6:50 pm
Yes, it was a book first. A worthwhile read, it connects all the dots on AIDS and while it mentions the complaints about Reagan, does not dwell on them and makes clear that Reagan (and Congress) did what they could in light of the limited information at the time. It was not even identified as a specific disease until 1984.
The movie as is typical, is a poor shadow of the book and was much more agenda-driven. Not worth watching.
#4 Comment By Swedish reader On December 5, 2012 @ 7:54 pm
The combination of prejudice, ignorance and insensitivity displayed by the Tennessee state legislators is unfortunate but it is entirely unnecessary to propagate it; SIV most likely crossed the species barrier sometime during the first third of the twentieth century and the most likely route was exposure to blood during hunting of chimpanzees for food and subsequent handling of their meat (several separate such events can be inferred from the diversity of the virus in humans); HIV was a rather widespread and entirely human disease by the fifties. (  ). That the homosexual community in the West is relatively more hard-hit is of course evident and sociological and psychological factors (a siege mentality of sorts) within the community may well have exacerbated the epidemic in some Western nations during the early years. Evident is also that the intestinal mucosa is a less perfect barrier to infection than the genital mucosae. However, what is the political point to be made from that? That gays shouldn’t marry?
What we can learn from the epidemic isn’t really that easily pigeonholed into one specific ideological position; one can conclude that comprehensive sex education and female emancipation is a good idea, along with access to condoms but also strong families and less (male!) promiscuity. Reason, responsibility and compassion, maybe? Which is something that the Tennessee legislator most certainly didn’t display when making those comments, so perhaps Mother Jones wasn’t that wrong after all? Especially considering what else they’ve apparently been up to…