December 1 is World AIDS Day

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by dannymawg, Dec 1, 2006.

  1. dannymawg

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    Searched the site a bit and didn't see any direct threads concerning the awareness day itself - so here's a PSA:

    wiki: World AIDS Day - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    World AIDS Campaign: World AIDS Campaign v2.0 | Home

    Corporate alignment: (RED)

    In my search I saw this thread: http://www.lpsg.org/et-cetera-et-cetera/26989-do-you-personally-know-someone-4.html

    Take the time to think of the issue today and where you fit into it, even if it's only to review your own knowledge and precautions.
     
  2. jeff black

    jeff black <img border="0" src="/images/badges/gold_member.gi

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    Yes it is... I bought my ribbon and bracelet to support the cause.
    Be safe everyone.
     
  3. Lex

    Lex
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    Did you see what Bill Clinton has done to bring HIV meds to millions of children?
     
  4. Pecker

    Pecker Retired Moderator
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    My mother had an exprience with Ayds many years ago.

    Seriously, guys, here's to a cure for AIDS being found soon.:beerchug2:
     
  5. Matthew

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    Exactly 12 years ago today, a small group of friends and I decided to begin regularly breaking the law in Atlanta, GA.

    We were members of ACT-UP there, and we saw how the epidemic was shifting its demographic: the frequency of transmission was declining among gay men and skyrocketing among intravenous drug users and their partners. We understood that a health epidemic like HIV never stays contained within one community; although most people look at needle drug users (or gays) as "them" and not "us," an infected user can transmit the virus to a partner who can transmit it to another partner and so on, etc. ad infinitum, until there is no more "them and us" - there is only "us." Many people start to know a "regular person" who got infected. The epidemic becomes a tragic problem for everyone, not just some despised and disenfranchised subculture.

    So without resources, or anything really except a desire to help, we started strolling regularly through neighborhoods where injection drug users hung out, giving them clean needles in exchange for dirty ones which we put into sharps containers that we carried with us. We also handed out condoms, gave information on how to protect oneself and others from infection, and offered contacts for people who wanted to try to quit using (but even for those who wanted to quit, there was at the time a 6-month wait for a treatment bed, which discouraged most).

    Needle exchanges were already sprouting up around the country (and world) but this program was the first one in the US South. Many thought we would never make it because of Georgia's conservative political climate, but we stayed underground. While we had some close calls, the police never stopped us (carrying drug paraphernalia is a criminal offense); we believed they deliberately looked the other way since they suspected what we were doing. We raised money for the needles by carrying plastic buckets through a busy intersection in Midtown while cars were stopped at a red light - with 10-12 volunteers we could raise $1,000 an hour. 12 years later, the program still exists, works in several neighborhoods, has paid staff, and exchanges thousands of needles a week. It would be difficult to estimate the number of new HIV infections the program prevented, but it is certainly in the thousands.

    What's the point? Anyone can make a difference if they want to. You don't have to have special training or resources - just a heart and a will to help. So on World AIDS Day, here's to everyone living with HIV and affected by it. And here's to the Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition and everyone who decides to roll of their sleeves and take a stand. If we act together with our communities, we will change the course of history for the better, and we will beat this disease.
     
  6. jeff black

    jeff black <img border="0" src="/images/badges/gold_member.gi

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    Matthew.
    *applauds you and your friends*
     
  7. B_NineInchCock_160IQ

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    Honestly no shit this is how I read the above quote the first time.
     
  8. joyboytoy79

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    I admire that man greatly. Even after being publicly humiliated for no reason (other than political agenda), he continues to selflessly give to the people of the world.

    I highly doubt we will ever hear from GWB after his reign of tyranny has ended.

    ACT-UP is one of the few organizations around today that still values making a difference above making a profit. It doesn't surprise me to learn that you were (are?) involved with them, Matthew... you seem like a really upstanding gentleman.
     
  9. D_Sheffield Thongbynder

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    Here's to you and more like you, Matthew, who make a difference in the world.:kiss:

     
  10. Matthew

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    Thanks, guys.

    But remember that nobody in my gang had special qualities that others don't have. All of us can find some way to help: giving money, volunteering time, speaking out, etc. We tend to look to leaders with a list of great accomplishments as the ones who change history. But it's much more often the case that the collective effort of many, many people, each doing some small part, is what actually improves society - even to the point of groundbreaking or revolutionary change.
     
  11. dannymawg

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    The above, highlighted in red, is the most simple act one could start with - assessing personal responsibility. And that of your partner, or potential partners.

    4 years ago I began donating to the Howard Brown Health Center. HBHC is in the Chicago area, and perfoming free HIV screening tests today in light of World AIDS Day. Howard Brown : Home Page

    If somebody out there hasn't done it already, please - take the time to do an online search to find testing in your area. If you act quickly today, it might be free (if it isn't already), or at a reasonable cost.
     
  12. snoozan

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    OK, so maybe this is a really stupid lame story but i thought of it when I read this thread. It's more about one of the small things one can do that makes a huge difference to one person.

    HIV tests are routine with pregnant women because the risks of contracting HIV by the fetus depends on the method of the delivery and procedure during labor. When I was in young, I had a lot of sex, and a lot of sex with a lot of people. I had mostly anonymous, unprotected sex with men that, on reflection, could very well have been IV drug users, etc. I could go on to describe, but the bottom line is, I had way too much unprotected sex with way too many people. I'd already had an STD and at that point had declined an HIV test. I was terrified.

    Well, I put this test off for weeks. The day that I had finally psyched myself up enough to think about doing it, I talked to someone I barely knew and confessed all my secrets and how scared I was. He happened to know a lot about HIV transmission, and talked me through what my real risks were, why I should do it, and generally supported me yet gave me a (gentle) boot in my ass to go to the damn vampires, I mean, blood lab. Maybe this doesn't sound like a huge thing, but I was and had been in mortal terror of taking an HIV test for years and had many times gone to get one and run away at the last minute.

    I went to get the test, and actually did it that day. It was negative, which lifted away a cloud of fear that had been nagging at me for so long that I didn't realize how much it affected me. I had been so scared that I could have transmitted it to my son, which is a terrible feeling for a futute mom. It was a wonderful thing that I had someone to coach me through, and I don't know if I would have done it without him.

    So here's the punchline... The person was JBT. The poor guy had some pregnant crazy whom he barely knew waddle up to him shaking and almost in tears, and instead of running away, he was calm, rational, and supportive. Which is par for the course for JBT. So, even though I have fun skewering him here on the boards (mostly for his singing voice), he is someone that I have the utmost respect for and love because he is truly a wonderful person.

    I have to go spank him now.

    Snoozan
     
  13. briefs

    briefs New Member

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    I've been poz for over 25 years and am just grateful to be here after all that time. Too many fine people have died too early.

    I appreciate the continuing contributions by activists, volunteers, medical teams, researchers and caregivers.

    A cure would be such a great thing.
     
  14. prepstudinsc

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    My church is having an HIV/AIDS summit today with panelists and free confidential HIV testing, then a service afterwards jointly sponsored by the church and several local community organizations. Straight or gay, black or white, HIV and AIDS affects us all. My congregation owns two homes that families affected by HIV can live in when they are displaced from their homes. We also are a part of RAIN (Regional AIDS Interfaith Network) which is a group of churches that sponsor support groups, give assistance in various ways--taking people to appointments, bringing food, financial, etc., and has "care teams" who adopt people and families to help them however they need it. Sometimes it's just that they need friends.
    It's time that people in "the church" get over their stereotypes and learn that HIV and AIDS affect us just as much as people outside the church.
     
  15. Lex

    Lex
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    Briefs--thank you for sharing. I know quite a few HIV+ people and know of at least 5 mixed status couples (a gay couple where one partner is HIV+ and the other is HIV-). Glad you are here and healthy.


    Some medical institutions are pushing for routine HIV testing for everyone during regular check-ups.

    1 out of 4 people don't tell their partners they are HIV+ because they don't know that they are positive.

    Get tested and play safely. Educate yourself on safe practices.

    Each and every one of us who is sexually active has a responsibility to keep the spread of STDs to a minimum.

    How many people know that having gum disease makes you suseptiable to contracting HIV from oral sex?

    Many men point to the fact that stomach acid kills the virus, but having bleeding gums makes that a moot point. Don't floss of bruise your gums with hard brushing 4 hours before anticipated play.

    Education, as always, is your best defense (besides abstinence).
     
  16. dannymawg

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    Kicking myself for not having bumped this thread in 2007... so here's a bump for 2008. The "corporate alignment" link in the opening post has changed - it is now here: (RED)

    AIDS has not gone away, and no one is immune, despite the best precautions.

    Go get a test today. It doesn't matter where you are located, or what income level you are at - some organization somewhere near you has a free or inexpensive HIV screening, more than likely coupled with a STD screen, too.
     
  17. D_Fiona_Farvel

    D_Fiona_Farvel Account Disabled

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    Yes, many communities were offering free tests today (some all week).

    In honor of those I've lost to HIV/AIDS, I had a free, oral hiv rapid test (took an hour, but I was happy to see a crowd) - lovely to find out that I'm clean (in under an hour). It seems my annoying fastidiousness about safe sex remains worth it :tongue:, but more importantly, I'm happy to not be endangering my partners.

    For anyone in the NYC area, GMHC, and their wonderful volunteers (they're awesome, and I miss working there), will be offering free testing around the city/boroughs all week. I hope everyone takes advantage of the free tests and finds out their status. :hug:
     
  18. D_CountdeGrandePinja

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    There was a great AIDS walk here in Wilton Manors, FL tonight - it was quiet, peaceful and with the full cooperation of the City.

    The only noticeable missings were the young people - they probably think they are above and beyond any problem.

    This plague will not go away until we ALL open our minds, hearts and have the compassion that we'd want if the shoe was on the other foot.
     
  19. !!nakedtarzan

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  20. D_CountdeGrandePinja

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    Just from the lack of interest in this topic shows how much we have forgotten all those who have died of this plague!
    May we never FORGET!
     
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