Hoping to call attention to the extent of HIV/AIDS among gay men, state health officials said Tuesday that an estimated 1 in 22 gay and bisexual men in Florida had the virus last year, an infection rate that dwarfs any other group.
HIV has struck some areas of the gay community even harder, with rates as high as 1 in 11 among gay white men in Broward County, 1 in 13 gay black men in Palm Beach County and 1 in 12 gay Hispanic men in Miami-Dade County, officials said. By comparison, in the least affected group, 1 in 1,625 white women had the virus.
But numbers aside, activists said many gay men do not practice safer sex, for many reasons: A cavalier belief that new drugs have made HIV a manageable disease instead of a killer; rebellion against safer-sex after years of sexual fear; abuse of party drugs; lack of safe-sex knowledge among younger males, and denial caused by stigma against homosexuality.
Well, I think a five percent infection rate overall is quite scary. Some areas it's more like one in ten. Guess some folks need to smarten up, give their heads a shake, keep their pants on and all that, if they don't want to get AIDS, that is... Of course, if they want to play San Franciscan Roulette, that's their business. Just remember, if they don't advise those around with whom they fool that they may be infected, they could end up being charged with murder or attempted murder or manslaughter or something else carrying a long sentence. Folks just need to smarten up before it's too late... if it isn't already too late...
What's wrong with abstinence, anyway? Why do people think they have to go around behaving like rabbits as a way of life?