We have grown used to hearing examples of the appalling ignorance surrounding Aids. And it is not surprising that such a deadly virus, which infects vast numbers of people across all racial and social divides, should be regarded as taboo by many. But to discover that the Aids stigma is alive and well and infecting a group of people to whom bereaved families look for solace is particularly disturbing. From time immemorial funerals have been a profound part of the grieving process and to be denied this rite only adds unnecessary grief to the relatives of the deceased. Certainly, there is a risk to those who handle bodies infected with the Aids virus. But that risk also exists with many other diseases. And it is a danger which can be overcome by taking sensible precautions, just as those working in the medical profession have to. These are the same precautions which are taken when undertakers deal with deadly strains of hepatitis, for example. Properly managed, the risks are not great, and certainly not reason enough to discriminate against those who have died of an Aids-related illness. It seems just as likely that the real fear of Aids is caused not simply by ignorance, but by a refusal to dispel that ignorance. And for this there is no longer any excuse. As the chairman of the Hong Kong Aids Foundation, Dr Leong Che-hung, points out, we have had Aids education here for almost 12 years, everyone knows what it's about. But making people care is still a long way off.