Fears about AIDS

September 28 1987

Fears about AIDS

September 28 1987

Fears about AIDS


I received your Aug. 31 Cover/Special Report, “AIDS and sex,” with the beautiful rhetoric on the front page: “The panic level is rising, and more and more people are asking: when is sex safe? Their lives depend on the answer.” I have the answer: one simple word, monogamy. -CHRIS PUYT,


I enjoyed reading your informative and comprehensive article on “AIDS and sex.” Because one of the recommended ways of overcoming the further spread of AIDS is sexual abstinence or, to use an old-fashioned word, chastity, I was glad to read Candice Mossop’s statement, “Being celibate is not going to kill me. Not being celibate could kill someone else.” I see this as a responsible act on her part in the fight to combat AIDS. I recommend that all AIDS-infected persons become as highly disciplined. But could this be asking too much of a society and culture that have been steeped in sexual permissiveness for the past three decades? Time will tell, but time is limited. We must all act responsibly now. —GAIL M. BEDA,

Thunder Bay, Ont.

Your article dealing with the fear now broadly associated with AIDS contained a picture with the caption, “Read: worry about restaurants with homosexual chefs.” My immediate assumption was that new information was available indicating that one should worry about transmitting AIDS through contamination of food. On reading the actual quote

I MOVING? CALL TOLL FREE 9.a.m. - 5 p.m. 1 18002689057 Eastern Time 596-5523 in Toronto OR COMPLETE THIS FORM AND MAIL AT LEAST 8 WEEKS BEFORE YOU MOVE MOVING DATE OLD ADDRESS NAME CITY -~ 11111 PROVINCE POSTAL CODE Macloan's Maclean's Subscription Dept. Box 1600, Postal Station A, Toronto, Ontario M5W 288 NEW ADDRESS CITY I I I PROVINCE POSTAL CODE

of Dr. Stanley Read, it was clear that he was stating the opposite. Since knowledge of AIDS became general a few years ago, I have believed that the virus would adapt to the environment and would not be confined to the groups of people known to be at risk at that time. There is reason for concern about this dread disease. However, your caption is irresponsible, for it can only add to the fear now rampant in society. -ESTHER HARSHAW,


Toronto Board of Education, Toronto

The wrong kind of exposure

As a person who believes that young people should read Maclean’s to keep in touch with current events, I find that my advocacy has been weakened by the distasteful picture of Janet Jones in your Sept. 7 People section. How such a picture is necessary to the understanding of the news item in question is beyond me. —MARY RICE,

North Battleford, Sask.

I did not subscribe to Maclean’s to receive sexist material like your picture of Janet Jones. Material like that has as much to do with news as young women in scanty bathing suits have to do with sports. Finding such material in your magazine has angered and disappointed me. I hope you will reconsider your policies and give Canadians back an excellent and informative newsmagazine.

-MAGGIE BREAU, Hamilton, Ont.

Flipping through my back issues of Maclean’s, I’ve come up empty-handed. Where’s the beefcake? I must have missed an issue, so humor me if you will. Any one of Janet Jones’s beaus (such as Wayne Gretzky or Vitas Gerulaitis) will do. -SHEILA WALSH SMITH,

Windsor, Ont.

Continuing language conflicts

It made me angry to read statements by people who felt they were being forced to speak French—in Ontario, of all places, and coming from people who would force English upon others—and to also read about a so-called French Canadian conspiracy to take over Canada (“Backlash over language,” Canada, Aug. 17). Such statements and the Alliance for the Preservation of English in Canada (APEC) motto (“One language unites, two languages divide”) are worthy of the red-neck American South of the past and hardly worth reporting. I find it sad that in 20th-century Canada some people would devote so much energy to denying others such basics as medical and court services in one of our official languages. So many other more worthwhile and rewarding causes could benefit from that energy. It only illustrates that we still have considerable growing up to do as a nation. APEC should consider another motto: “One language separates, two unite and enrich.” -ROBERT A. MCDONALD,

Aylmer, Ont.

As a resident of eastern Ontario and a supporter of bilingualism in Canada, I am extremely dismayed by APEC’s battle against the Ontario government’s plan to extend services to the province’s francophones. Considering that Canada has already been declared a bilingual country, I see no reason why its citizens should not be served in either of the two official languages, regardless of the province in which they reside, especially when those services are government services. I would love to hear from anyone interested in forming APFC (The Alliance for the Preservation of French in Canada). Our motto would be “Bilingualism unites, prejudice divides.”

-CHRIS POPLE, Kingston, Ont.

I applaud the efforts of the members of the eastern Ontario wing of APEC. In my opinion, Canada is comprised of almost every nationality in the world. When our forefathers chose to immigrate to Canada they gave up the language of their homelands and learned to speak English. Our politicians boast that Canada is bilingual. My parents are bilingual (English-German) and my wife is bilingual (English-Italian). However, they are not recognized as bilingual in the Canadian English-French sense. This is a direct insult to all other nationalities that make up Canada.

-ELMER BEKAR, Crestón, B.C.

Anglophones have every reason to fear the government-legislated incursion of the French language in predominantly English-speaking provinces. In 1961, as

a young English-speaking Canadian, I joined the Royal Canadian Navy. At that time, as now, those who spoke only French were immediately given immersion courses in English, even before going to boot camp. Often this program consumed a year out of a mere three-year hitch. No such Frenchimmersion courses were offered to anglophones. Thus the francophones became more qualified on the promotion scale and were given preference. The rights of both language groups must be protected. -ED FAULKNER,

Cutchogue, N. Y.

Taking away and giving

So the Prime Minister announced a forthcoming expenditure of $1.2 billion to diversify the western economy (“Money for the West,” Canada, Aug. 17). Gosh, that’s swell. If I understand this properly, the idea is to get westerners doing things not oriented toward natural resources, but high-tech things with long-term benefits to the area. The thing I don’t understand is this: wouldn’t the CF-18 contract have done that here if the government hadn’t ripped it out of Bristol’s hands and delivered it to Canadair?

-EDWARD SHINEWALD, President, Melet Plastics Inc, Winnipeg

An overgrown cabinet

My compliments to Stewart MacLeod and Maclean’s for writing and printing a very concise and eloquent attack on our grossly oversized federal cabinet (“Speaking with fewer tongues,” Guest Column, Aug. .24). If private business were run in the same manner, the bankruptcy courts would be overcrowded. Canada can ill afford this senseless extravagance.


The joy of Canadian stress

In “An award-worthy guest column” (Aug. 17), Stewart MacLeod writes: “But when it comes to the Joy of Awards, that’s us. Let the Americans get their joy from stress and sex and cooking.” The implication is that The Joy of Stress is American. It is, in fact, Canadian, written by Dr. Peter G. Hanson, who still practises medicine in Newmarket, Ont. Please, Stewart, don’t hand over Canadian books to the Americans so soon. Free trade isn’t here yet.

-CLIFFORD E. PERRY, Pefferlaw, Ont.

Letters are edited and may be condensed. Writers should supply name, address and telephone number. Mail correspondence to: Letters to the Editor, Maclean’s Magazine, Maclean Hunter Bldg., 777 Bay St., Toronto, Ont. M5W 1A7.