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The similarities between the current COVID pandemic and AIDS are striking particularly with regard to the political dimensions of each.  Living through COVID we have all witnessed the destructive nature of misinformation and politicizing of medical and scientific matters.

During the early years of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s and 90s political, bureaucratic, and regulatory apathy and indifference led to a rapid expansion and spread of the disease.  AIDS was a “gay plague” in the public mind.  Gays “got what they deserved” was a common sentiment.  Fear and misunderstanding merged with the outright hatred of homosexuals creating a toxic atmosphere of apathy and inaction.  President Ronald Reagan never uttered the word AIDS publically until five years into the epidemic.