AIDS AND THE MEDICAL PROFESSION
Dr. Donald Miller is a practising anaesthetist in Cape Town. He invites discussion on the letters below, and would like to link up with evangelicals in the medical profession who are prepared to take a stand on these issues.
1. THE CHALLENGE OF AIDS TO THE MEDICAL PROFESSION.
To the Editor:
The spreading AIDS epidemic is a precise illustration of the inadequate response of the medical profession to this preventable disease. As leaders in healthcare we have been a disgrace. The rules of treatment have been ignored in treating the symptoms and not the cause and in hesitating to make this most notifiable of diseases notifiable. The epidemic is spreading not because of "unprotected sexĒ or contaminated blood, but because the behaviour of mankind is out of step with the image in which he is created.
The inadequacy of the profession's response in addressing the issue is entirely due to the time prevailing attitude amongst its policy makers, which is determined by a poverty-stricken humanistic philosophy with its pseudo-morality.
In contrast, the Biblical teaching on sexuality provides the means by which AIDS can be eliminated. The solution to the problem is known, and yet I have not yet encountered one article in a medical journal that mentions it. A faithful, monogamous relationship, and sexual intercourse only within marriage, is the only solution and the only safe sex. In the Bible, almost without exception, sex outside of marriage was punishable by death. It is as if man's persistent refusal to heed God's order for healthy, satisfying, family life has made it necessary for AIDS to bring man to his senses. AIDS is not a punishment. It is simply there to illustrate to us that his our way results in death, the fruit of humanistic philosophy.
Can we afford to call stating the truth as a first step to changing man's behaviour impractical idealism? Does sex education in this country promote anything to do with the restoration of God's order for sexual relationships (sex is in fact the smallest part of this huge and important subject) or is it just symptomatic in its treatment, promoting pre-marital or extra-marital sex indirectly, through its focus on "safer sex", and the prevention of pregnancy? You can hardly call playing Russian roulette practical.
NO progress in halting the AIDS epidemic is likely until we are prepared to recognise the need for the restoration of God's order for sexual relationships, as laid down in the Bible. AIDS would be wiped off the face of the earth if we all followed the rules. If the truth is never said, it leaves us with no real hope, only delusions.
2. WHY AIDS IS NOT A NOTIFIABLE DISEASE.
To the Editor.
Of all the diseases which should qualify as a notifiable disease, AIDS should top the list. YET, is it not a most extraordinary phenomenon, that this disease has received such exceptional treatment? It is because this disease uniquely reveals manís fallen nature. Homosexuals, whose survival was threatened when AIDS became known (about the same time that the homosexuals went public) in California in about 1980, have been very successful in their campaign to sway opinion from the beginning and securing as many as possible of their number in high positions for that purpose.
With humanism as its foundational philosophy, the medical fraternity, worldwide, has been completely vulnerable to such a pressure group. Without a basis for being able to say what is right and wrong, the profession is without the required discernment. It cannot see the irrational double standards employed as arguments to support issues such as confidentiality, consent, etc. For instance, potential AIDS patients, they say, are supposed to be treated like any other patient, except, unlike any other patient, consent to investigate them for the HIV virus must be sought. Another argument that is used to support the idea of confidentiality is that many AIDS sufferers are innocent. The vast majority, who are guilty, hide behind the fact. Some are innocent, with nothing to be ashamed of, making the innocent even more vulnerable to this rapidly spreading disease. To add to their twisted logic, they argue that if you make it notifiable, it will drive the disease underground. That is in fact the present status of the disease, and the urgent reason that it be made notifiable.
This pressure group has obtained much space in journals and the media, where we can hear these opinion makers at work. You only ever hear them talk about the right of the HIV positive individual and never are the rights of the community mentioned. Conversely, you only ever hear about the responsibility of the community to provide for the sufferer: never are the responsibilities of the individual mentioned. This is typical of humanistic thought and the state of rebellion of humankind against the God who is there. He is there and he is not silent. AIDS is a very loud shout to humankind to turn to the Bible that provides the only solution to the problem.
7405 South Africa
Many to Many Issue 3 February 1993