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Politicizing the AIDS crisis

Bush's pledge to fight AIDS in Africa comes with some strings attached, it turns out. Bush is limiting the funds that clinics which perform abortions can receive. Is it moral to politicize an epidemic?
posted by hipnerd on Feb 17, 2003 - 93 comments

Dan Savage on bugs

Dan Savage takes on the Rolling Stone "bug chasing"/HIV+ gay sex story in his column today, and lambastes one of his favorite sacred cows, Gay Men's Health Crisis and other outreach groups that seem to have a lackadaisical attitude towards their clients' risky behavior. He's written about this before, in the case of Seth Watkins, an HIV+ sex education worker who admitted in the NYTimes he has unprotected casual sex at clubs. Does any of this coverage increase awareness of the still-plenty-big threat of HIV, or does it just make gay men look bad? Respectful discussion within...?
posted by serafinapekkala on Jan 29, 2003 - 42 comments

Bush appoints anti-gay member to AIDS panel.

Bush appoints anti-gay member to AIDS panel. Jerry Thacker runs the Scepter Institute, a Christian Ministry. Their website states that "Both Jerry and his wife, Sue, [are] HIV-positive. How could it be? Jerry and Sue were committed Christians." The L.A. Times notes that Thacker has described homosexuality as a "deathstyle," and describes significant revisions that have been made to the Scepter Institute's website. I wonder if Thacker will be applying for some funds to renovate Scepter's offices, now that he is providing such a valuable social service?
posted by stonerose on Jan 23, 2003 - 87 comments

Africa.

Africa. Whether you think of it as The Heart Of Darkness, the Dark Continent, or as an ecological laboratory, Africa is ultimately home to us all. But Sub-Saharan Africa is in peril of spiraling into chaos: the scourge of AIDS, near-continuous unrest, and a lamentable inability of most African countries to maintain anything like a modern civil society are precursors to what might become a humanitarian catastrophe unlike anything we have ever witnessed. Do we still blame the ghosts of colonialism for this, or is it time for Africans to take the responsibility for their own problems?
posted by mrmanley on Dec 6, 2002 - 35 comments

Is Male Circumcision A Solution to the African AIDS Crisis?

Is Male Circumcision A Solution to the African AIDS Crisis? The United States Agency for International Development has sponsored some hopeful research suggesting that wider availability of male circumcision could substantially reduce AIDS tranmission in Africa. Contrary to worries that male circumcision would be viewed as a culturally imperialist intrusion into African traditions, public health surveys have found surprising unfulfilled demand for circumcision among African men.
posted by jonp72 on Dec 1, 2002 - 7 comments

Missing an Opportunity

Missing an Opportunity: One thing not discussed at the world AIDS conference was the impact Christians, acting in accordance with a biblical worldview, can have on this crisis.
posted by jasontromm on Dec 1, 2002 - 13 comments

Some other numbers

Some other numbers "During the period known as the Aids epidemic, 14 million people died of heart disease while 9 million succumbed to cancer, which is 8.5 million more than those counted for AIDS." And Aids is 100% preventable too. So why all the focus on it, to the exclusion of other diseases that pose much more horrible threats to us?
posted by bonaldi on Dec 1, 2002 - 11 comments

AIDS deaths in 2002

Some numbers. 3.1 million in 2002 comes out to some 8,500 a day, 354 an hour, and almost 6 a minute. Each minute. Each hour. Each day. Deaths. Of AIDS.
posted by mattpfeff on Dec 1, 2002 - 0 comments

Feline Immunodeficiency Virus & Animal Lentiviruses

But what about the kitties? Feline Immunodeficiency Virus. FIV has been recognized as a syndrome since 1986, and as with AIDS, has been found in stored blood samples dating back to the 60s. Unlike HIV, however, for FIV there's a vaccine. Not that everyone is excited about it.

Originally, this was to be a post intended to provide something lighter until this appeared:

In addition, over 25 large cat species including, cheetahs, lions, and panthers have their own strain of the virus. Despite similarity among these viruses, transmission among species has never been documented. Scientists think that FIV is an old virus and may be the grandfather of all immunodeficiency viruses. Comparison of its' genetic code point to a virus that is millions of years old.

Googling led to several topics.
posted by y2karl on Dec 1, 2002 - 3 comments

AIDS Dissidents

AIDS Dissidents argue AIDS is not really caused by HIV but is a production of medical and pharmaceutical conglomerates. They are willing to argue the point even though some are HIV positive. They use "Seven Deadly Deceptions" such as "The HIV test is unreliable--so don't get tested." to further their cause; and their cause is growing.
posted by Neale on Dec 1, 2002 - 3 comments

First mention of AIDS on Usenet

The first mention of AIDS on Usenet was in the net.singles group back on December 20, 1982. In it, seven people grasp for information about the disease -- how it's transmitted, how long it takes to start to show symptoms, and what those symptoms could be. It's a window both into the early days of AIDS knowledge and the early days of the Internet, and a fine example of people using 'net-based community groups to acquire information and ask questions.
posted by delfuego on Dec 1, 2002 - 6 comments

Personal stories about HIV/AIDS

Among the plethora of online resources, there exist many personal stories of how the disease has touched the lives of online authors. I'm listing the ones I've found today (by all means post others you find as a comment here).
- Ultrasparky thinks about it twice a day
- Mermaniac remembers Ronnie
- PozBoy's story of getting tested
- Q's story from the hospital
- Piggyhawk's scare
- Thinkdkink's jr high assembly
- The Fray remembers Robert
posted by mathowie on Dec 1, 2002 - 9 comments

I Wear A Red Ribbon

I Wear A Red Ribbon "Why do I wear the Red Ribbon? I wear it because I CAN. I am still alive, still able to carry the message about the reality and urgency of AIDS and how HIV can be prevented. I carry this message for those whose voices can no longer be heard but whose presence can still be felt. What message is that? I carry the message-- to all who will hear AND listen-- that HIV/AIDS is, at this point, 100% FATAL... but it is also 100% PREVENTABLE." She died in 1995 in a car accident.
posted by ashbury on Dec 1, 2002 - 6 comments

AIDS Timeline

An AIDS timeline from 1981-2001. As part of an exhibition by the Museum of the City of New York on Gay Men's Health Crisis, one of the first service organizations created to help fight the disease, a very simple interactive timeline was created--just pick a year or browse through them all...from a "Rare Cancer Seen in 41 Homosexuals." (NYT-1981) to "15,000 new HIV infections a day in 1999".
posted by amberglow on Dec 1, 2002 - 0 comments

Anatomy of sexual risk

In the Trenches with Love and AIDS. An HIV-negative gay man shares why he sleeps with seropositive men and how he deals with the danger :
"When his health finally collapses, you clean his diarrhea off the sheets and floor and swaddle him in diapers against his will. When he falls into a coma, you lie next to him every night and jerk off amid the scent of looming death. Your orgasms are great. You hold his hand as his last breath slips away and then his mouth drops open and foam bubbles out. They take him away but you can't let him go yet, so you don't change the sheets for two days, and you masturbate some more."
posted by The Jesse Helms on Dec 1, 2002 - 31 comments

Stopping this scourge

Dr. Donald Francis He was portrayed by Mathew Modine in the classic HBO film And the Band Played On, which told the story of how he discovered the AIDS virus 20 years ago. Earlier in his career he was a key member of the team that wiped out Smallpox (although he couldn't argue a few governments from keeping samples on ice just in case) and the team that figured out how to contain outbreaks of the flesh eating Ebola virus--that was essentially him, though not his personality, that Dustin Hoffman played in Outbreak. Now he's the president and chief scientist of Vaxgen, a company that expects to receive positive result from its Phase III human clinical trials of AIDSVAX shortly after New Year's. If the results are as expected, AIDSVAX will be the first AIDS vaccine to go into production.

Like any other major issue in our age of delusions and self-deceptions, there are doubters and paranoids and conspiracy theorists too. Here is a neat little example of all three bundled up in one, from a publication titled The Aids Mirage: Donald Francis invents a viral epidemic. All the stop energy embodied by such efforts are really sad.
posted by billsaysthis on Dec 1, 2002 - 0 comments

Cure for AIDS

Cure for AIDS is a song by Dan Bern, whose voice and songwriting have labelled him The New Bob Dylan. Read the lyrics, listen to the clip...it may be a bit optimistic and utopian, but it's heartwarming nonetheless.
posted by Robot Johnny on Dec 1, 2002 - 1 comment

Albert Schweitzer and SIV

The Hunt for the Origin of AIDS "The notion that AIDS arose from a polio vaccine made with contaminated chimpanzee cells is far from the only theory about how the epidemic started, and it is hotly disputed. The quest for the source of the epidemic is intensifying, as researchers scour the jungle for clues and try to "walk back" the disease genetically with the help of the world's most powerful computers."
posted by the fire you left me on Dec 1, 2002 - 2 comments

HIV/AIDS information portal in OK

CHAIN: Oklahoma's Comprehensive HIV/AIDS Information Network. A prototype web portal, designed to provide one-stop access to AIDS information for a state with a lower HIV infection rate. Funded by the National Library of Medicine. The concept is that people in small towns or rural areas can access information and contacts without leaving home. Web designers and MetaFiltrans - does the concept work? Seen anything similar in your community?
posted by sheauga on Dec 1, 2002 - 0 comments

Living With Aids

Steve Schalchlin, a singer-songwriter, writes about living with AIDS in his online journal. Students at Marshall High School put themselves in the shoes of an HIV-positive girl, in the project My name is Kerry and I have AIDS (Now I'm dead!). Journalist Eric Foss keeps a diary about his visits to AIDS victims in Zambia, with pictures, video and interview transcripts. Adam Solomon writes at length about training for and participating in several AIDS rides for vaccine and cure charities. Five years old, but still affecting, there's AIDS worker Paul Gallotta's AIDS diary. Supporting group efforts of AIDS victims and other interested parties is the journal Being Alive. There's a vast catalog of compelling first-person perspective at HIV/AIDS Positive Stories, at Avert.org, and at Breaking the Silence... Rompiendo El Silencio from the AIDS Project Los Angeles.
posted by Mo Nickels on Dec 1, 2002 - 0 comments

Pandemic: Facing Aids

Coming Soon on film and in print. Pandemic: Facing Aids - an ambitious project from filmmaker/activist Rory Kennedy and the AOL Time Warner Foundation.
posted by subpixel on Dec 1, 2002 - 0 comments

Educate. Prevent. Practice Safer Sex. Demand Needle Exchange Programs. End HIV/AIDS Discrimination.

Educate. Prevent. Practice Safer Sex. Insist On Needle Exchange Programs. End HIV/AIDS Discrimination. Demand Adequate Treatment for Low Income HIV+ Persons. (And fight like hell against those who drag their feet on public health issues for the sake of ideology.)
posted by fold_and_mutilate on Dec 1, 2002 - 2 comments

Know the enemy

Know your enemy. AIDS Pathology. The HIV Life Cycle. Images of HIV.
posted by wobh on Dec 1, 2002 - 29 comments

USG PR

US Government Support for the Fight Against HIV/AIDS is an overview from the State Department of funding and programs directed towards international AIDS prevention and treatment. World AIDS Day was proclaimed by the President. The special CDC site focuses on the stigma and discrimination of AIDS that creates impediments to fighting the disease. The National Institutes of Health launch AIDSInfo on December 2, combining prior resources. USAID notes its own programs and accomplishments. The US Surgeon General notes the impact on persons of color. Housing and Urban Development looks at housing opportunities. And the Department of Veterans Affairs provides more AIDS care than any other single agency. The NIH Drug Abuse office has its own information site, including notes on the perhaps ineptly, perhaps tellingly PSA spot series titled "Jack and Jill".
posted by dhartung on Dec 1, 2002 - 1 comment

AIDS in Africa photojournalism

AIDS in Africa by photojournalists Gideon Mendel and James Nachtwey (flash required)
posted by gravelshoes on Dec 1, 2002 - 3 comments

The Access to Essential Medicines Campaign

The Access to Essential Medicines Campaign is an initiative by Medecins Sans Frontieres that seeks to "lower the prices of existing medicines in developing countries, to bring abandoned drugs back into production, to stimulate research and development for neglected diseases that primarily affect the poor, and to overcome other barriers to access." HIV is one target disease. The Campaign's press releases, press clips and reports on HIV give a good picture of recent developments. In light of this evidence, does anyone care to step up and defend "big pharma" and the governments of the wealthy North? Have we/they "done enough"? What would "doing enough" look like, given the scope of the crisis?
posted by stonerose on Dec 1, 2002 - 5 comments

Artists and AIDS

Artists and AIDS - in 1986, Mesami Teraoka began his series of AIDS themed watercolors and they have been exhibited widely since. The art community has been an important force in raising both public awareness and funds for the AIDS epidemic. Visual AIDS has been in the forefront of mobilizing the art community. The site contains a rich archive of work since 1999, with special exhibits on art for Africa and the women of Visual Aids. Another international effort, Artists for AIDS, was started by Canadian artists to raise money for African children with AIDS. Some earlier group art projects include Ten Years, Ten Artists, Making Art & Raising Hell and Art Against AIDS, a Ukrainian collection of posters and prints. Some art contains adult themes & Teraoka's site has a warning.
posted by madamjujujive on Dec 1, 2002 - 1 comment

Thabo Mbeki's AIDS policies

"35,000". The South African president Thabo Mbeki is failing to deal with his nation's unbelievable AIDS epidemic. Here are the opinions of his chief advisor on the disease. For balance, here is the opinion of the UK government. Do you agree with me that Mbeki is a dangerous man, and is a terrible choice to follow his predecessor?
posted by Pretty_Generic on Dec 1, 2002 - 6 comments

Time to think about the Bush Administration's stance on HIV

Time to think about the Bush Administration's stance on HIV. Thinking about it allows you to go on and on thinking about it. You know what they were writing about Bush in 2000 (compliments of first Google hit)?
Riddled with AIDS, burdened by poverty and plagued by wars, Africa will present significant foreign policy challenges to the administration of President-elect George W. Bush, analysts on the continent say.

Though many fear Bush will pay little attention to Africa, its problems may be too great to ignore.


What ever are we going to do now?
posted by crasspastor on Dec 1, 2002 - 6 comments

AIDS in China

"China's catastrophic mismanagement of its AIDS crisis has come to this: Xie Yan is trying to give away her son. Ms. Xie's husband died last year of AIDS, and she has the virus as well. They are the victims of government-backed blood-selling schemes that have left about one million people infected here in Henan Province in central China. Multiply Ms. Xie's heartache a millionfold, and you understand the cost of the Chinese government's cover-up of its AIDS crisis. If China continues to be more concerned with hiding the tragedy than confronting it, then today's Chinese leaders could kill millions of people over the next two decades. We in the West must exert strong pressure on China to act quickly to address the AIDS challenge."
posted by homunculus on Dec 1, 2002 - 1 comment

Did the government create AIDS?

According to the international agency UNAIDS, an estimated 42 million people are living with HIV today. Five million people were newly infected and 3.1 million people were killed by the disease in 2002. This civil rights lawyer has brought a case in federal court alleging that the US government created AIDS under the "US Special Virus" program between 1948 and 1978. Here is the flowchart upon which he is basing his case.
posted by dejah420 on Dec 1, 2002 - 16 comments

AIDS a century from now

"More than we can bear." The impact of the AIDS pandemic over the next 100 years may have effects even more far-reaching than many of us have considered. Joseph Riverson has some thoughts on what it will take to prevent a "Black Death" reality.
posted by litlnemo on Dec 1, 2002 - 1 comment

Link and Think kickoff

To celebrate World AIDS Day, MetaFilter is going to focus solely on HIV and AIDS related posts for the next 24 hours. Like last year's observation on MetaFilter, this year's Link and Think project asks everyone to think about the issues surrounding this disease, how it has affected you, others, and the world. Feel free to share information on prevention, research, or anything else related to the topic at hand.
posted by mathowie on Dec 1, 2002 - 7 comments

Condoms bad! No sex, good!

White House Wages Stealth War on Condoms The government is waging a covert war on condoms. Fact sheets on the effectiveness of condoms in preventing the transmission of the AIDS virus have disappeared from government sites. Right wing activists have been appointed to the the presidential AIDS panel. Government audits of AIDS activist groups who protest these policies have begun. So, apparently only evil-doers have sex outside of marriage, and they deserve to die horrible deaths.
posted by dejah420 on Nov 20, 2002 - 166 comments

Companies in South Africa providing treatment for HIV

South African mining giant begins providing triple coctail for HIV treatment. Something optimistic for a Friday post: AngloGold along with DeBeers is offering its employees HIV Triple cocktail treatment for free. With almost 30% of some of these companies' workforce affected with the HIV virus, is this an example of merging corporate and social interests or is this a sign of honest corporate citizenship?
posted by phyrewerx on Nov 15, 2002 - 18 comments

China. Abandons Communism. Gets AIDS. May be about to lose its shirt. While everybody on the pink side of Ebenezer Scrooge is pissing and moaning about the state of America, here's one American who thinks the state of the Middle Kingdom is at least equally interesting (as in ancient Chinese curse, "May you live in interesting times.")
posted by jfuller on Nov 12, 2002 - 11 comments

A quick HIV test is about to hit the US market.

A quick HIV test is about to hit the US market. An HIV test that is easy to administer and provides results in 20 minutes has just been approved by the FDA. This is a big deal partly because almost 250,000 Americans are infected and don't know it. The ease of this fast-response test will help identify some of them.
posted by o2b on Nov 8, 2002 - 30 comments

For years, it's been observed that some people infected with HIV never develop full-blown AIDS. Now American and Chinese scientists think they know why. But remember kids, barebacking is still dangerous, and a cocktail is not a cure. Maybe this research will change all that.
posted by WolfDaddy on Sep 26, 2002 - 21 comments

How Safe is the Blood Supply?

How Safe is the Blood Supply? A tainted donor infects two with HIV in Florida. The people in charge of the blood claim it's safe. But recent books and documentaries raise serious questions.
posted by ahughey on Jul 19, 2002 - 12 comments

Of all species that have existed on Earth, 99.9 percent are now extinct,

Of all species that have existed on Earth, 99.9 percent are now extinct, yet scientists insist that we make a great effort to save endangered species. If extinction is the natural course of evolution, why bother? And if humankind is the cause of these lastest extinctions and endangerments, should efforts be made to save people so that their exploitation of the natural world can continue? Aren't our efforts to fight diseases such as the aids epidemic in Africa not only a denial of evolutionly forces but also adding to the problem of overpopulation exerting unbearable pressure on the environment? If evolution is truely the force it's claimed to be can it's course be changed by mankind and if so, should it be? Should evolution be allowed to take its course?
posted by Mack Twain on Jul 8, 2002 - 44 comments

You're the king of a small african nation. You have an annual health budget of $15 million. Two-thirds of the people in your nation are HIV positive, and two-thirds are living below the poverty line. What do you do? Why, you buy a $31 million private jet, of course!
posted by Reggie452 on Jul 8, 2002 - 27 comments

Thanks to a breakthrough in medical technology

Thanks to a breakthrough in medical technology allowing HIV-infected semen to be purified of the virus, thousands of men will now be able to father children whose high-school graduations they'll never live to see. Is there no limit to human vanity?
posted by tiny pea on May 2, 2002 - 19 comments

At Si Tanka Huron University, a school of 400 in South Dakota, as many as 50 people may have been exposed to HIV by having sex with an HIV-positive basketball player or two of the women he slept with, according to today's New York Times.
posted by rcade on May 1, 2002 - 22 comments

Frank Moore

Frank Moore [NYT], the originator of the red ribbon, died of AIDS last week. His gorgeous paintings depicted politics from Yosemite to Versace. As one of the few incredibly contemporary but still publicly accessible artists, he will be missed.
posted by RJ Reynolds on Apr 26, 2002 - 4 comments

Chlamydia

Chlamydia seems to be on the rise. Working in a hospital lab I've seen an increase in tests for HPV, Herpes and Gonorrhea. It's enough to make one wonder if sex is worth the risk.
posted by Apoch on Mar 20, 2002 - 13 comments

Isaac Asimov died of AIDS.

Isaac Asimov died of AIDS. His widow, Janet Jeppson Asimov, reveals that Asimov acquired AIDS from a blood transfusion during bypass surgery in 1983 in a condensed version of his biography just published this month ("It's Been a Good Life"). Apparently his doctor advised that they not disclose his AIDS infection.
posted by maudlin on Mar 10, 2002 - 39 comments

AIDS Programs: An Epidemic of Waste.

AIDS Programs: An Epidemic of Waste. Interesting article about AIDS funding in the USA... and these people want more taxpayer money! Heres a quote: The Stop AIDS Project of San Francisco, which received $698,000 (39 percent of its budget) in CDC grants in fiscal 200139, has sponsored several "prevention" events, including a gay prom in April. Last August it held "Booty Call," a seminar about dildos, plugs, fisting, and rimming. The advertisement read, "After a little basic science, share tales of intercourse and orgasm. Find out why so many of us find ass play a major turn on."
posted by Keen on Mar 4, 2002 - 47 comments

The NIH is abandoning phase III trials of a possible hiv vaccine due to "technical reasons" the trial will continue in thailand. On a happier note there are currently more than 90 other hiv vaccines in other stages of trials. What do people think are the chances the pharmaceuticals will decide chronic disease management is more profitable, and actually do something to make this a more likely outcome?
posted by rhyax on Feb 25, 2002 - 21 comments

"I'm ashamed I've done so little,"

"I'm ashamed I've done so little," said Senator Jesse Helms who expressed regret that he hadn't done more during his tenure to fight the global spread of AIDS and HIV. Lame ducks are the strangest animals of all.
posted by likorish on Feb 21, 2002 - 38 comments

There goes Colin Powell, pissing off the far right again. This time the Family Research Council and folks like Gary Bauer demand to know how dare he go on MTV and, in response to a teen's question about AIDS, tell kids to USE CONDOMS! (And for that matter, what is the secretary of state doing appearing on that smut-filled network in the first place, and what kinds of parents allow their children to listen to satanic rock music and hip-hop, and how dare insolent children raise filthy questions with government officials about SEX?!)
posted by jellybuzz on Feb 15, 2002 - 56 comments

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