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June 9, 1993

AIDS: Reason for Optimism?-Reply

Author Affiliations

Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health Baltimore, Md

JAMA. 1993;269(22):2848. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500220034017

In Reply.  —In his response to the review of AIDS: The Making of a Chronic Disease, Dr Bayer blames the editors of the volume—Daniel M. Fox and me—for a "misconception" of his position. He believes that we—and the reviewers—are critizing him for excessive optimism. In fact, our introduction to the book makes a fairly cautious statement: "Bayer says he is now less pessimistic about the generosity of public policy in the United States than he was in 1988."1The exact degree of a person's optimism or pessimism is a delicate matter to judge. Bayer is certainly in the best position to gauge whether or not he is currently more or less pessimistic than he was in 1988. I submit, however, that he—and the rest of us—do have some reason to be "less pessimistic" about public health policy than we might have been 5 years ago. Given President Clinton's campaign