National AIDS Remembrance Day
Today we are celebrating WORLD A.I.D.S. DAY. In most respects, this has not attracted much attention in the media, and it's almost a good thing. A.I.D.S. was a "legacy" that our older LGBT were afraid that they were passing down to us. In about 1995-1996, there was a new discovery of anti-viral meds of various types which meant that most of those living with A.I.D.S. were no longer facing a death sentence. For the first time I am told that gay newspapers, such as The San Francisco Reporter, slowly but surely reached a time when there were no A.I.D.S./H.I.V. related obituaries in print.
There is a general perception that A.I.D.S. is so treatable that it no longer poses a problem. This is wishful thinking. All of the medications have side effects, and we are just now learning how the virus will be tolerated by older GLBT people who have reached the golden years. People did not grow as old in the early days of the plague. In addition, the cost of the meds is astronomical.
Doctors also tell us that unsafe sex is still extremely dangerous. Pornographers feature "bareback" dvds which totally ignore the reality of this pandemic. The best advice is to practice safe sex AND have an H.I.V. test every three months or so. We don't need to develop another disease called "AFRAIDS," which makes guys paranoid about any and all sexual contact.
When you read this, say a prayer or observe a moment of silence for all the many people who are memorialized on the NAMES PROJECT A.I.D.S. MEMORIAL QUILT, which was shown in its entirety in Washington, D.C., on the Mall from the Lincoln Memorial to the Capitol. Many have gone before us, and forgetting them would be totally uncaring.
To view the enormity of the QUILT, Google it and see the horrible reality of the pandemic. Remember that many people died and no one made a Quilt in their memory.
Love yourself and others by practicing safe(r) sex until you know you are in a monogamous relationship. Even then, we have heard of many couples who had one cheating partner. The result has been seroconversion.
One final comment, there are probably some guys you know who are H.I.V. Positive. Don't look down upon them or infer that they have been stupid. No one, aside from some mentally disturbed people, ever plans to become infected.
Written by Cousin Butchie because YOU ARE WORTH IT!