In the context of race and gender, the serial murder theme is employed rhetorically in a radical cause, to attack the position of the traditionally dominant social category of white males. Vito Russo's analysis of homosexual themes in American film emphasizes how frequently homosexual characters die violently, as if this were the natural consequence or due punishment for their condition. In news reporting, it is common to suggest that murders occur because the killers had themselves been assaulted by homosexuals, either through early child abuse, or else through contracting Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. It stigmatized homosexuals as child molesters and violent sex criminals and thus set back attempts to liberalize the laws. The stigmatization of homosexuals as potential sex-killers represents in extreme form one of the commonest themes in the rhetorical exploitation of serial murder: the extrapolation of uncommon behaviour to denounce not merely a category of people, but their whole social and cultural system.