Shilts makes the decision to publicly disclose for the first time that he is HIV positive. Shilts’s growing health struggles come quickly as he is then diagnosed as having AIDS. Shilts views as problematic the focus on his HIV status rather than the release of his new book, “Conduct Unbecoming.” Shilts has to limit his book tour to media interviews due to his declining health. The veracity with which Shilts answered earlier questions about his HIV status is explored; along with the ethics of what level of personal disclosure, gay men (or reporters) owe others. “Conduct Unbecoming” becomes a central part of the gay military ban discussion as movie rights to “And the Band Played On” are sold to HBO.
Keywords: Conduct Unbecoming, HIV, Kaposi’s sarcoma, disclosing HIV status, HIV tests, William F. Buckley Jr, full-blown AIDS, AZT treatments, azido thymidine, Cleve Jones, Russian River, Guerneville California, Michael Denneny, Charlie Roses, Terry Gross, Larry King, Ted Koppel, Boston Globe, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Jeffrey Schmalz, HBO, Home Box Office, movie contract, Robert Spottiswoode, Arnold Schulman, Lily Tomlin, Sir Ian McKellen, Matthew Modine, Alan Alda, Richard Gere, Phil Collins, Anjelica Huston, Steve Martin, Samuel Goldwyn Theatre, Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, Reed Shilts, Dawn Shilts, Kennedy Center
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