I remember a few years back, a gay blogger jumped down my throat because I noted a correlation between gays and the HIV virus, and he started quoting untrue statistics that he’d heard at some kind of AIDS awareness conference. After I linked him to sites with true stastistics that show a definite correlation, he disappeared and didn’t bother responding. At some point over the last few years, some gays have tried to distance themselves from the disease by emphasizing that straight people were able to get the disease as well. I understand why they do this in some ways, it’s a natural reaction against right-wingers who use the HIV stastistics against them as an excuse for homophobia, but at the same time they’re kicking themselves in the foot by not addressing the higher risk they face. Well, one gay rights group is addressing the issue:
One of Southern California’s most influential gay institutions has launched a controversial ad campaign
declaring HIV to be a “gay disease.”
The Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center, which has for 20 years vigorously fought the contention that HIV/AIDS is a ‘gay plague,’ says it now wants to target gay men who have become complacent about the illness.
The message “HIV is a gay disease” and the tag line “Own It. End It” is set to appear in magazines and on billboards across L.A.
Proponents of the campaign say the current AIDS awareness focus on minority women and other groups has left gay men — who still represent most of those infected in the U.S. and Western Europe — feeling a false sense of security.
I remember a gay friend of mine telling me that now that there are HIV cocktails, that some gay people don’t even take the disease seriously anymore. In fact, there have been reports of some gays who actually go out of their way to get the disease, they think of it as some sort of initiation. Now that’s scary.
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