AIDS Awareness Day, Will it Move Beyond the Politically Correct Response?
(Harrisburg) — Today is National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) it is “a day to not only bring attention to and promote understanding of the disproportionate burden of HIV among gay and bisexual men, but also to recommit ourselves to the fight to end this devastating epidemic.” The American Family Association of Pennsylvania (AFA of PA), a traditional values group, notes that is a worthy cause, but also notes the CDC is not fulfilling its responsibility of trying to control this pandemic.
“The CDC’s politically correct approach of not discouraging homosexual behavior sends the message that such behavior is natural and normal. The compassionate response, the one the AFA of PA always takes, is to discourage participation in such a dangerous lifestyle,” remarked Diane Gramley, president of the AFA of PA.
A CDC study released earlier this month found that 1 in 5 homosexual males in 21 major US cities were infected with the HIV virus and almost half did not know of their infection. Philadelphia was one of those cities and of the 440 men who have sex with men (MSM) who were tested for HIV, 48 had tested positive and of those, 34 were not aware of their HIV infection.
As the CDC works “to provide gay and bisexual men and their communities with appropriate messages about HIV through social marketing, fact sheets, web-based information, and other avenues,” it needs to move beyond the politically correct approach and grasp onto the words of Matt Foreman, former executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force when in February 2008 he acknowledged ‘HIV is a gay disease.’
“In 2006 there were 30,000 new HIV infections among MSM in the US. Until the CDC and others grasp the truth that HIV is a gay disease, the HIV pandemic will continue and more innocent lives will be lost simply because they are not told of the dangers of the homosexual lifestyle,” Gramley concluded.
# # #