Case in point: Time's "Giving AIDS Drugs to Prevent Infection," by Christine Gorman. She begins her article in a manner sure to get attention:
You think giving condoms to high school kids is controversial? How about giving anti-AIDS drugs to folks who aren’t HIV-positive so that they can continue working as prostitutes or engaging in sex without having to worry about their partner's HIV status?
Note the parallelism of the word "giving." In the one case, the reference is to handing out an item for free. In the second case, the reference may be the same, but it may also be to the act of prescribing something that an individual would then purchase. There is no indication in the article that there may be any distinction between the two acts of "giving." There is also no indication of who might be doing the giving or how the gift is paid for. Yet the comment section following the article shows just exactly the reaction this introduction was intended to elicit: "I'm tired of spending my tax dollars . . ."
Gorman's story, despite its benign title, is all about controversy. This includes the fact that some branches of the research trial testing PrEP have been shut down, that there are moral concerns about the prevention strategy being studied, that there may be medical issues related to long term exposure to the drugs used in PrEP. There is little about the prevention context of this research; nothing that would help a reader understand its importance to women or discordant couples. Her emphasis leads the reader directly to mental images of orgy and irresponsible welfare leeches.
I don't often react this strongly to a news story. It could be blood sugar issue. And I'm no great personal fan of PrEP. However, I think it's time to give this sort of journalism a label ("tabloid crap") and this sort of journalist a title ("hack"). Time Magazine has done a better job of covering AIDS issues in the past; someone should have a little chat with the editor who allowed this garbage to get through. As for Ms. Gorman, she should just cross her legs. Then she'll never have to worry about PrEP. I don't know what it would take to get her to stop writing, but maybe she'll take an interest in fashion or celebrity home decor. That might be more suited to her style.