“religious preference” notwithstanding.nWhen a German opinion survey indicatednthat 29 percent of those surveyednfelt that AIDS has at least had thenbenefit of curtailing excessive sexualnfreedom, and the minister of health ofnNorth Rhine Westphalia called theirnattitude “cynical and abhorrent,”nWiedemann regretted that the churchnhad not made a similar condemnationnof such reactionary and unloving attitudes.nWith most varieties of conduct thatnclearly contribute to disease, thenchurches and the rest of society do notnspare their moral strictures. It is certainlynfair to say that once cigarette smokingnwas definitely shown to be a causativenfactor in lung disease, the churchesnjoined with the rest of society in utteringnmoralistic advice against smoking. Whynis there no such reaction with respect tonwhat is now the most horrible sexuallyntransmitted disease, AIDS?nA theological study from the nowdefunctnGerman Democratic Republicnputs forward the interesting view thatnthe supposed African origin of AIDS —nendorsed by one of the discoverers ofnthe AIDS virus. Dr. Robert Gallo — asnwell as the evidence that AIDS hasnbeen disseminated in the United Statesnby persons of Haitian origin have been,nif not trumped up, at least trumpetednabroad in the service of Western colonialismnand racism. Ehrhart Neubert concludesnhis study Between Fear andnAttraction (Berlin, 1989) with thenrather strange accusation that “manynchurches bear part responsibility, becausenof their silence, for the fear thatnhas spread across the world more rapidlynthan the virus itself” He continuesnwith the rather strange, obviously falsenquotation (without a footnote): “‘Becausenpeople are afl^ected by AIDSnwithout respect to their race, class, sex,nor age, as well as their sexual preferencesnand relationships [emphasisnadded], this disease challenges us tonquestion our fears and our discriminatorynbehavior.'” Neubert’s attitude isnrather typical of the ecclesiastical establishment:nalthough they formally acknowledgenthat the “high-risk behav­n8/CHRONICLESnior” which the churches haventraditionally condemned leads tonAIDS, they then immediately denynwhat they have just admitted and arguenthat this “knowledge” requires thenchurches to revise their traditional negativenattitudes towards such behavior.nIf AIDS were really a “disease likenany other,” the connection betweennAIDS and specific forms of activitynwould lead the churches to join healthnofficials and society in advising againstnit. Instead, they all join in a chorus tonsay that that is precisely what one mustnnot do. One is reminded of St. John’snprophecy in Revelation, after a descriptionnof three plagues that kill a third ofnmankind: “And the rest of mankind,nwho were not killed by these plagues,ndid not repent . . . they did not repentnof their murders nor of their sorceriesnnor of their immorality nor of theirnthefts.”n— Harold O.J. BrownnCAPTAIN THOMAS Santomo,nwho aspired to be chief of the SannFrancisco Fire Department, recentlynachieved fame, or notoriety, when henclaimed that he legitimately changednhis self-identification from Gaucasiann(his father) to Hispanic (his mother).nBut Captain Roybal, also of the SannFrancisco Fire Department, allegednthat Santorno falsified the grounds onnwhich he based a claim to being Hispanic.nThere is no disagreement at allnabout two points: one, that the nextnchief was to be Hispanic; and two, thatnRoybal, who is the genuine article,nscored below Santorno and othersn(40th, in fact) on the qualifying test.nRoybal’s shot at the job would havenimproved if other candidates’ Hispanicismncould be impugned.nThis case shows that the multiculturalismntaking root in our universitiesnis bearing fruit. There is genuine acceptancenof making ethnicity central tonjob qualifications. If two qualified personsngo toe-to-toe and the employer isnlarge enough to be noticed, the minorityncandidate gets the job even if thenother is better qualified.nThis case hits close to home. I amnmyself on the verge of proclaiming thatnI am Hispanic. I have every right. I wasnborn in Guba. Spanish is, literally, mynfirst language. Until age 18 I had dualnAmerican and Guban citizenship.nnnWhen I went through immigration atnthe Havana airport (before Fidel Gastro),nmy papers were processed in thenfirst batch while other American citizensnwaited.nHispanicism should be recommendednto any American who has grounds.nMy new designation will be a greatnboon to my employer, and possibly Inwill be rewarded for my additionalncontribution. My children may benefitn’ marginally in their chosen professions,nbut the real boons are reserved for myngrandchildren.nIf current trends toward politicalncorrectness and quotas are any guide,nmy grandchildren may expect scholarshipsnand significantly lowered admissionnrequirements at top universities.nMinority scholarships from federalnsources were reinstated when LamarnAlexander was confirmed as Secretarynof Education and, in any case, stillnabound from private sources like FiestanBowl sponsors. At the university level,nmy grandchildren will have multiculturalncurricula designed specifically fornthem, to enhance their self-esteem. Innthe workplace, they will benefit fromnpreferential employment practices includingnrace norming. Hispanicismnwill follow my grandchildren throughnlife and, as English-speaking minorities,nthey should prosper. •nI am not overly concerned that myngrandchildren’s Hispanicism would benchallenged so long as my status isnconfirmed. One-quarter Hispanic (angrandchild’s share) should be enough.nIn New Zealand, for example, 1/64nMaori kinship qualifies one for benefits,nincluding concessionary government-subsidizedninterest rates.nI am in the process of submitting mynown ethnic claim to adjudication bynhigher authority. The authorities fromnwhom I seek a ruling include FidelnGastro’s Guban Immigration and NaturalizationnService in Havana, thenGuban government-in-exile in Miamin(I would appreciate help with thisnaddress), the newly-formed BeleaguerednAmericans Legally OppressednNever Ever Yielding (BALONEY,n260 W. Main Street, Suite 104,nHendersonville, TN 37075), and thenalso new Ethnic Purity Review Boardnin San Francisco.nPerhaps I am not alone with thisndilemma. Gan others help?n— Virginia Abernethyn