“For Victims of AIDS, Support in a Lonely Siege” by Maureen Dowd

This article from 1983 gives some perspective on what AIDS was like in the early days. It was very scary, nobody really understood it well, and people left their friends alone to die in hospitals rather than risk being exposed.

Almost 30 years later it may be easier to reflect on these people as insensitive deserters, but I don’t think you’d really know how you’d react until you got into a situation like that.