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HIV/AIDS: Preventable Epidemic or Inevitable Consequence?

July 16, 2012

It is horrifying to learn that three decades after the initial onslaught of HIV in the United States, the disease is still ravaging many sectors of the population.  This is despite our immense knowledge about how the disease is transmitted and the existence of resources such as condoms that prevent transmission and anti-retrovirals which also decrease the risk of transmission when taken by the infected partner.

This new PBS Documentary entitled “Endgame: AIDS in Black America” sheds some light as to why the grip of the epidemic is so powerful.  It appears that the stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS continues to be so strong that many of those who are infected keep it a secret and those who are uninfected continue to believe that it can’t happen to them or people “like them”.  In the documentary you will see an elder in a church who’s deacon husband knew he was infected before he even asked her on a date and yet said nothing because he feared that she would not be interested.  You will also see a young 22 year old woman who learned of her infection many years ago but refuses to tell her mother or her sexual partners because of her fear of ostracism.

But what boggles my imagination the most is the case of a young gay man who was fully aware before dating his partner that his partner had HIV/AIDS and who still engaged in unprotected sex with his partner and as a result has also become infected.

 Please see this very powerful documentary below.

Endgame: AIDS in Black America

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