After class today, I looked up the statistic about Americans in a 1985 poll who voted in favor of quarantining individuals with AIDS. I was so shocked when it was said in class, also about the part about people wanting AIDS victims to be tattooed. Although it was a small survey (2,308 people participated over phone), 15% of respondents were in favor of the tattoo idea. I think that is repulsive. Publicly shaming people for a deadly disease that is only spread through blood/bodily fluids seems unthinkable to me. And not to mention the idea of quarantine, which 51% of respondents agreed to. FIFTY ONE PERCENT. 51% of respondents were in favor of having AIDS patients literally cut off from society. Imprisoning them for getting sick. I just don’t understand why people were so quick to demonize anyone with the disease. I understand that people were scared of a new deadly disease coming about, but it seems like so few people bothered to find out more about the disease before making blanket statements about quarantine. I guess this just shows how quickly the dominant groups in society are willing to turn on the less dominant groups (homosexuals, African Americans).

Here is the link where I got my information: http://www.nytimes.com/1985/12/20/us/poll-indicates-majority-favor-quarantine-for-aids-victims.html

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One response »

  1. alexanderlandau says:

    I was also astonished by the 1985 poll and that people wanted AIDS victims to be tattooed. We see this same ridiculous narrative, of wanting to separate and isolate groups of people in society, continue today with Syrians refugees and muslims.

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