If it were the nation’s goal to increase sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among gay men, nothing would work better than to follow the advice of pro-gay organizations.
The anti-gay defamation group, GLAAD, boasts that three decades after AIDS was uncovered, it “has reshaped our culture and created historic levels of acceptance.” On the same page it observes, incredulously, that “the U.S. has not seen a decrease in new infection rates [of HIV and AIDS] in nearly two decades.” That’s an understatement: nationwide, syphilis rates are the highest since 1994, and in 2014, gays, who are 1.6% of the population, accounted for 83% of all male cases. In New York, syphilis cases are up sixfold since 2000. “Most infections are in gay and bisexual men,” reports the New York Times, “a group whose use of condoms has dropped as the fear of HIV declined.”
So what is being done about this? The governor of New York is pledging a $3.5 million increase to the $2.5 billion the state spends annually on the disease; most of the money will be spent on research and housing. The New York City mayor plans to spend $23 million on HIV/AIDS, mostly on scientific efforts. Many celebrities are raising money to increase awareness. The Gates Foundation will donate $3 to a non-profit group for each use of a decorative “World AIDS Day” banner. The Foundation for AIDS Research is committing $100 million to a campaign that relies exclusively on scientific research.
A full-page ad in today’s New York Times says HIV can be stopped by prevention, testing, and treatment. The AIDS Healthcare Foundation is demanding that adult film actors wear condoms. And Gay Men’s Health Crisis offers this “hook up” tip: “Bring your own condoms and lube.”
None of these groups call for behavioral changes. But if restraint isn’t exercised, forget it. Homophobes may be a problem, but the real threat to gays comes from irrational gay activists and their equally irrational establishment allies.