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From The People's Guide to Mexico
The spread of SIDA (AIDS) and sexually transmitted diseases in Latin America is a problem of terrible dimensions. I seriously considered dropping the chapter on Brothels from the latest edition of People's Guide, then decided it was better to include a warning on AIDS -- rather than pretend the subjects of sex and prostitution don't exist in Mexico. Although the following letter came in a few years ago, the warning Christopher Sanford gives us is even more urgent today.
"...a small amount of constructive criticism: In your section on brothels, you omit any reference to condoms. I'm a Family Practice physician in Santa Cruz, and I see a multitude of varieties of the clap every week. Most caught locally, but some overseas, some in Mexico. These venereal diseases are getting worse. What once could be easily cured by antibiotics is now joined by ailments ranging from the difficult to eradicate (venereal warts) to the incurable (herpes) to the fatal (AIDS). All these diseases are easily available at houses of ill repute. So please! Advise the traveler not to venture into the red light district in an unsheathed state."
Carl: Female travelers in Mexico and Latin America should also be aware of the increasing risk of AIDS through heterosexual contact. Latin men do not like to use condoms. Death before dishonor! This head-in-the-sand, macho attitude has led to a rapid increase in AIDS among heterosexual latinas and undoubtedly more than a few gringas.
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