Today is December 1st. This date means lots of things to lots of people, but for me it’s World AIDS day.
World AIDS day is…
a day to remember
a day to fight
a day to live
a day to do something.
I was born in the 80’s not too many years after this virus started spreading around the US. I grew up in Southeastern Ohio, so you can imagine that sexual education in the 90’s wasn’t the most comprehensive program, I learned about HIV/AIDS from television & movies… and as a little gay boy I was terrified. I saw the fight that Pedro Zamora put up on the Real World:San Francisco, the weight that HIV could put on a realtionship in the movie Jeffery (also Patrick Stewart is fabulous in this), & finally people living with HIV on Queer as Folk.
Suffice to say…. I was scared to death of HIV/AIDS… and rightfully so! The issue was that while I knew what it was, & how to avoid it.. I didn’t know what else I could do, sure I’d buy some of the Product (RED) stuff at Gap, donate a dollar or two, but there had to be more right?
It took a few years… but I eventually learned there was & is! The fight against HIV/AIDS isn’t over yet, here are some ways that you can get involved:
- Donate – not just to the big national organizations, but local organizations need your support too!
- Volunteer – there are plenty of organizations that would love to have you volunteer with them!
- Ride – Yes all you fitness folks.. You can participate in one of many rides around the country.
- Be a Guinea Pig – ok sort of… getting involved in Clinical Research can make a HUGE difference on the medical front.
- Talk about it – I think that one of the biggest things we can do is just be willing to talk about HIV/AIDS. We have to fight the stigma!