Tuesday, November 29, 2005

HIV- Gay and Straight

Lifesite has an article out reporting on the increased HIV infections in Canada and the rest of the world. Before I start this, let me say that I think this is a terrible disease, and we need to take more steps to try to prevent further infections, whether that is through more personal responsibility (less sex), more use of condoms, more education, or whatever it takes.

However, sometimes I feel like the religious right is just a bit too happy to blame HIV infection entirely on the gay community. It's almost as if it gives them more reason to feel good about their anti-gay stance.

The article starts by talking about the rising HIV infection rates in Canada and talks about how gay men, bisexual black men, and drug users constitute the majority of these cases. I felt like the bisexual black men comment was almost a way to blame gay people for the increased heterosexual HIV rate over the last few years.

So, the first half of the article talks about North American infections, and how the gay community accounts for the majority of new infections, yadda yadda.

Then the second half of the article goes into the HIV rates in Africa, Asia, and Eastern Europe. But, here's what got me. They don't mention who accounts for the majority of these new infections in the rest of the world. They are so clear about who is to blame for new infections in Canada, but when they start talking about the areas of the world where heterosexual sex is the main spreader of HIV, they don't even mention it. Someone that wasn't up-to-date on HIV infections worldwide would easily be left to assume that gays accounted for the majority of new infections in the world because Lifesite talks about North America, but when they change regions, they conveniently don't mention the shift of infection causes.

I'm not saying the reason for this article was to demonize gays, but it is all too convenient to point out how gays are the main cause of new infections in North America, and then not mention that they aren't the main cause in the rest of the world. Shouldn't they be giving their readers full information, not a "blame the gays" snippet?


At 29/11/05 7:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brady, make no mistake, the intent of this article was to demonize gays. Take a look at some of their archives and you will note quickly that they exist for 2 reasons: stop abortion and demonize gays. That was their intent, to blame gays for rising HIV infection, so it is no coincidence that they "conveniently" forgot to mention that hetero sex also spreads disease. Lifesite is one of the most vile and disgusting fundy outfits, I can barely bring myself to read their articles.

At 30/11/05 12:42 AM, Blogger Elizabeth said...

Sorry but i'm with bc on this one. And what makes it more sad is that i've had this argument with my dad. I should say to him someday, "Thanks dad, for blaming the AIDS on gay people and for making me feel like shit for no reason at all. Great parenting dad, well done."

But i'm not bitter or anything.

At 30/11/05 6:55 AM, Blogger Brady said...

Guys, thanks for the comment. You make good points, and I can certainly see where yall are coming from. I think I just don't have quite enough experience with Lifesite to make the call as you guys have done, but maybe I should take BC's advice and look into it.

Elizabeth, if it makes you feel any better, you can tell your dad that Lesbian sexual contact is the safest type of sexual contact out there, so at least he can't blame HIV on you, just your gay male friends ;-)


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