hiv&aids

anonymous asked:

just wanted to say thank you for your discussion of hiv. tbh prior to reading about it here, i did think that it was a good idea to criminalize sex without disclosure (from my perspective as a former survival fssw who was terrified of catching it from a customer) but when you point out how laws are unevenly enforced and especially that no aspect of having an illness should be criminalized... i'm just glad i could re-evaluate my stance on the issue. thanks!

Thank you!!! You’ve made it worth it!

I think your reaction is common and understandable, and I think it’s where everyone is coming from, it’s a common nightmare that was deliberately inculcated, being unwittingly exposed to an sti by some immoral person with wicked intentions. I don’t recall any kind of HIV education until I was 17 and volunteering with Danzine that wasn’t based in scare tactics rather than actual knowledge of the disease and current medical updates. HIV, AIDS, and the people with it are all demonised or made into sad skeletal caricatures, or both, and there isn’t any discussion beyond that. And I think there’s a branch of the scare tactics specifically targeted at women, the idea of a rapist going around infecting people as slow murder, that really resonates with people.
And maybe that did happen? I don’t know.
But I do know that with that potential exception, the people who are targeted and who go to prison for non-disclosure have been low income people of colour who were actually not even having risky sex. One man was giving blow jobs. There’s no part of the newspaper accounts of Ms Mendoza’s case that even indicates what kind of sex she was having, or that she was having it without protection.
And I don’t think that should make a difference in law–I don’t think non-disclosure or any other part of someone’s medical history should be criminalised-but I also think it’s interesting and profoundly depressing that no one who wants Ms Mendoza in prison is thinking about any of this. I think it’s interesting and profoundly depressing that, despite the plentiful evidence to the contrary, people will still revert back to “laws are good and the state is here to protect us” despite YEARS of evidence to the contrary, building up to the past three years of increasing violence against people of colour and sex workers. All of that critical framework–if barbieescort ever had t, doubtful–goes out the window.

It isn’t murder. Ms Mendoza didn’t murder anyone. It’s overwhelmingly likely that she didn’t even infect anyone. But I also think about if she did. Would that person be named in newspapers as HIV+ now? Will they disclose to every sexual partner they ever have that they are HIV positive? Who will enforce this? Who will send them to jail if they do not? Also, most men who go to sex workers don’t go to just one, even in the same month or year. Could it have been another sex worker who passed it on? Or could they have given it to another sex worker, or their girlfriend? If they do transmit HIV, how will the person they gave it to know it was from them and not someone else, a sexual partner from a year ago?

Epidemiology isn’t a tidy thing with one person to blame. Even a patient zero.

And none of these people are asking themselves the above questions (which, let’s be real, are unenforceable. These laws can only be enforced against someone who is already vulnerable in some way, someone who has been arrested for something else and then found to have HIV, &c) because if they did, they’d see how INSANE the whole idea is.

Can you imagine policing people’s sexual behaviour? And once that’s condoned, what else becomes okay?

blackaids.org
Transgender People, "the most heavily burdened" HIV Population, No Longer Invisible
Founded in May of 1999, the Black AIDS Institute is the only national HIV/AIDS think tank focused exclusively on Black people. The Institute's Mission is to stop the AIDS pandemic in Black communities by engaging and mobilizing Black institutions and individuals in efforts to confront HIV.
By Gerald Garth

Almost 50 times more likely to acquire HIV than any other adults, transgender people form “the very heart of the global HIV/AIDS epidemic,” says Chris Beyrer, M.D., president of the International AIDS Society and co-chair of AIDS 2016. “They are the most heavily burdened of any of the key populations.”

This week, transgender leaders from around the world gathered at the first trans pre-conference to the International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) to shed their “invisibility.”

CLICK THE HEADER LINK TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE.

I look at myself as being extremely special. Realization of the fact that I was born HIV positive does not make me any different from any body living with any other chronic disease or anyone living a normal healthy life. Your perception about how you look at me is your perception and yours alone. I feel good. 💋💋💋 -Byanca Parker

huffingtonpost.com
Here Is How HIV Impacts The Transgender Community
"I want other trans women to understand is that you can live a happy, healthy life with HIV."

The series videos, called “Empowered Trans,” features different conversations about the experience of being HIV-positive and trans, ranging from moments of diagnosis to discrimination and stigma to the process of navigating healthcare providers.

michiganradio.org
Once again, it's "Hotter than July" for Detroit's black LGBT community | Michigan Radio

It’s time for Hotter than July, Detroit’s annual week of celebration and remembrance for the black LGBT community.

This year’s events kicked off Tuesday evening at Detroit’s Palmer Park, with a vigil for community members who faced violence, diseases like HIV-AIDS, discrimination and oppression.

Organizers say the week of events often feels like “a big family reunion.”

But it also has its somber moments, like when attendees honored those who have passed away near a spruce tree dedicated in their honor.

politico.com
Under assault, pharma increased campaign contributions
As the governor and Legislature pushed proposals this past legislative session that would have had broad-ranging effects on prescription drugs, the pharmaceutical industry increased its campaign donations in Albany this year, thwarting a looming attack.

According to a POLITICO New York review of financial disclosures filed with the state’s Board of Elections, the pharmaceutical industry spent a combined $384,000 on campaign contributions between January and July of this year, an increase of nearly $100,00 from the same time period the year prior, although it was about $66,000 less than in 2014, the previous election cycle.

CLICK THE HEADER LINK TO READ THE FULL ARTICLE.

6

Gay Pride parade cuties in glasses 2016″ - part 22

Even I am not so much into guys with beards I must say that this guy looks extremely handsome and damn hot in his glasses and also with his hearing aids - one for amplifying the sound for his left ear and one for tramsmitting the sound as an electronic singnal to a cochlea implant at his left ear.

[I know quite a lot of gay guys who have a deficient acoustic preception or are totally deaf. Is this just by chance or is there any connection inbetween?]?

towleroad.com
Mike Pence  wanted to use HIV/AIDS money to fund conversion therapy
Mike Pence, Indiana Governor and Donald Trump’s running mate, said in 2000 that he was in favor of sending money allocated to care for people with HIV/AIDS to organizations that provide conversion therapy.

Reason #523750 Not to Vote For Donald Trump: His newly-announced running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, staunchly opposes LGBT rights, much more so than your average Republican politician.

In addition to advocating for religious-based discrimination against LGBT people in his state, he also advocated for funds allocated for HIV/AIDS services to go instead to conversion therapy. And, as you’ll remember, conversion therapy is actually a part of the GOP platform this year. 

During his first successful run for Congress in 2000, now-Indiana Gov. Mike Pence wrote on his website in a section on LGBT issues that money from a program to help those with HIV/AIDS should go to organizations “which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.”

That section on LGBT issues was called, “Strengthening the American Family.” It read:

Congress should oppose any effort to put gay and lesbian relationships on an equal legal status with heterosexual marriage.

Congress should oppose any effort to recognize homosexual’s as a “discreet and insular minority” entitled to the protection of anti-discrimination laws similar to those extended to women and ethnic minorities.

Congress should support the reauthorization of the Ryan White Care Act only after completion of an audit to ensure that federal dollars were no longer being given to organizations that celebrate and encourage the types of behaviors that facilitate the spreading of the HIV virus. Resources should be directed toward those institutions which provide assistance to those seeking to change their sexual behavior.

This man does not belong anywhere near any kind of public office, let alone the vice presidency. Please. Do. Not. Vote. Republican. 

towleroad.com
Javier Muñoz, Broadway's New Hamilton, is Openly Gay, HIV+ and a Cancer Survivor - Towleroad
Until this week, Javier Muñoz has been Lin-Manuel Miranda's alternate for the role of Alexander Hamilton in Broadway's insanely successful show.

In an interview with The New York Times Sunday, he talked about his real-life role as an HIV advocate: “I have been living with H.I.V. since 2002, and I’m undetectable. I’m healthy, I’m strong and I’m very out about that because of the stigma still attached to it.” 

upnorthlive.com
Police: HIV-positive prostitute arrested after allegedly not telling sexual partners | WPBN

There’s no legal fund that I know of for this woman yet but I’m gonna keep an eye out and ask around. This is terrible and terrifying and horribly horribly wrong .

GAYLORD, Mi. (WPBN/WGTU) – The Gaylord Police Department tells us they are investigating a 36-year-old Otsego County woman for allegedly soliciting sex via a Craigslist ad and not disclosing her HIV-positive status to multiple sexual partners.

Sources tell us more than 70-people responded to Mendoza’s ad online but it’s unclear yet exactly how many of those people followed through with meeting her.

Either way both the Otsego County Prosecutor and Gaylord Police Department say it’s a significant public health risk that she failed to tell her sexual partners she was HIV-positive.

In late April Mendoza was arrested at a Gaylord motel for an unrelated charge and put in jail.

Through that investigation police learned Mendoza had been having sex with a man who was unaware of her HIV-positive status.

“When police told him He was surprised he of course had no idea he had been exposed to that,” said Sgt. Frank Claeys with the Gaylord Police Dept.

Police tell us the partners had allegedly been responding to the ad and in some incidents, traded money for sexual services.

Mendoza was arrested on a 17 count felony warrant and was arraigned Tuesday. Among the charges she is facing include HIV/AIDS-Failure to disclose, prostitution/accosting and soliciting as well as using a computer to commit a crime.

Otsego County Prosecuting Attorney Mike Rola says the men who responded to Mendoza’s Craigslist solicitation will not be charged.

cnn.com
Prince Harry gets tested for HIV to raise awareness
Britain's Prince Harry gets tested for HIV to raise awareness and to normalize the testing process.
By Shanna Pavlak, CNN

The whole process – taking the test and learning the results – took less than four minutes.

“It’s amazing how quick it is,” said Harry, who tested negative for HIV.

After getting the results, the prince encouraged people to get tested, even those who don’t think they have been exposed, in an effort to normalize the process.

“It’s better that everyone goes and gets tested. Why wouldn’t you? Whether you’re a man, woman, gay, straight, black, white, whatever, even ginger, why wouldn’t you come and have a test?” he said.

Kensington Palace tweeted Harry took the test live because he “believes his generation needs to take leadership in the fight against HIV, or risk losing the gains of those who’ve come before." 

youtube

Enyce Smith is utilizing the art of voguing to make a statement about the slew of tragedies that queer, trans and black people have all suffered over the past several months.

The queer artist’s new video, sponsored by HIV non-profit organization REACH LA, brings together a group of voguers to provide artistic commentary and perspective on the recent tragedies targeting people identifying along the queer spectrum and within communities of color.

“With recent tragedies I felt it was important to make a video showcasing the beauty of being different and the need for love and respect all across the board,” Smith told The Huffington Post. “We need to own who we are and be proud of it! The LGBTQ community and the African American community are speaking out on not being treated fairly and being a part of both. I feel it’s only right to speak out so I address the Orlando Pulse shooting, the discrimination against trans [people] using public restrooms and the recent killings of black lives. We are all humans.”

[via]