Peter Staley: Progress on marriage has meant a setback in the fight against AIDS

In an Op/Ed piece in the Washington Post, activist Peter Staley calls for the LGBT community to recommit itself to fighting HIV and AIDS: …in our exaltation over wedded bliss, we are forgetting another kind of “til death do us part”: the bonds that tie us together as a group, across social strata, race and generations — the same bonds that helped us fight AIDS…. …HIV remains the largest health issue facing the gay community. From 2008 to 2010, according to the… Read more

POZ Magazine: The Sound of Stigma by Mark S. King

I LOVE Mark S. King and I respect his unedited, unabashed way in which he addresses all topics HIV. His recent piece on HIV stigma is no exception. Why do we feel the need to judge anything “other”? Some of my favorite quotes from the article are below.  Stigma lets us take comfort in seeing things in others about which, we believe, they must be ashamed. It is a lazy way to feel better about ourselves—and therefore a popular human activity—and gay… Read more

What Stigma Means To Me

Like an onion, there are many layers to HIV-related stigma. Stigma can be internalized to oneself, or it can manifest outward. Like an interstate, stigma can also move in both directions at the same time. Consequences to stigma can impact a person, a relationship, or a community. Like an elevator, stigma can move up and down the age scale. The impact it has can have physical, emotional, and social effects to both HIV- and HIV+ men. It seems to me there is a growing and widening divide between HIV+ and HIV- men. Like an infection, it seems to be only getting worse.

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Generation Gap

I think there is a fine line between outreach and shrill screeching.  I acknowledge that there probably is a generational gap in methodology between “those that came before” and “generation Y” when it comes to HIV advocacy.  Young people (those under 30) with HIV did not grow up with the imagery and horror that was the early days of HIV.  Older people perhaps do not understand how social media can be an important tool in advocacy. But to point fingers… Read more

Stepping Forward About HIV Status, A Call for National HIV Coming Out Day

Michael Kaplan is president and CEO of AIDS United. This article was originally published on The Huffington Post. To read a response by LGBT law professor Ari Ezra Waldman, click here. By Michael Kaplan Last month I attended a summit about raising HIV/AIDS awareness in the gay community. It was a spirited discussion, as we all sought to determine where we might best invest our efforts to have the most impact. Much has changed in this world since I first tested HIV positive… Read more

I’m Sorry My HIV Offends You

It’s easy to be an ass on mobile dating apps because you can hide behind a cell phone. It’s also easy to get your feelings hurt if you don’t quickly come to terms with the fact that guys online can be vicious. Most men online put it all out there and can be so upfront about what they do and don’t like. Some even go as far as to flat out say, “no fems,” or “no Asians,” or “no fatties.” Apparently, honesty can show how ugly someone truly is on the inside. But what I find most offensive is the treatment of HIV-positive guys who are online looking for most likely the same thing you are. “I’m clean, UB2.” -The most ignorant statement most commonly found online.

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Opinion: I Am Loved and I Am Loving

I tested positive for HIV in 2008. My world did not come crashing down around me when I received the news. It was hardly newsworthy for this crystal meth junkie. I did not feel especially alone as I left from Howard Brown Health Clinic, tucked away in a seedy enclave of Chicago’s otherwise bourgie-hip northside. I did not cry out of fear for my life. I had lost my life long before then. Growing up in a society that made it institutionally impossible for me to fully and visibly exist in all the beautiful complexities of my identity, I simply didn’t give a sh*t…

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