Morality Play

04.08.134:04 PM ET

‘Temptation’ Shames the HIV Positive

The takeaway from Tyler Perry’s latest film: STIs are a punishment.

Tyler Perry’s Temptation: Confessions of a Marriage Counselor is off to a great start at the box office, but its critics have much to complain about. The movie follows the story of Brice and his wife Judith, who cheats on him and contracts HIV. She is rendered ugly and unlovable, while Brice remarries and has a son. Amanda Marcotte points out that such a grim take on HIV patients as somehow deserving of their affliction is “pointless cruelty.” What’s more, stigmatizing sexually transmitted diseases makes people “more reluctant to get tested and treated, and they certainly will struggle to have the conversations or take the initiatives towards prevention.” So Perry isn’t doing anyone any favors with his sanctimonious message.

Incidentally, April is STD Awareness Month.