A Political Flashpoint
Epidemiologists identified the first risk groups, all considered socially marginal, as men who had sex with men, Haitian immigrants, and injection drug users. More politically active since the 1970s liberation movement, gay men and their allies organized to provide support for the sick and disseminate information. They also called for more government resources for research.
Most politicians, along with some religious leaders, resisted a coordinated national policy. They restricted immigration by those infected, prohibited using federal money for explicit sex education materials, and required some states to consider compulsory quarantine.