Skip to comments.Bug Chasers:The men who long to be HIV+
Posted on 01/23/2003 12:44:38 PM PST by Remedy
Carlos nonchalantly asks whether his drink was made with whole or skim milk. He takes a moment to slurp on his grande Caffe Mocha in a crowded Starbucks, and then he gets back to explaining how much he wants HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. His eyes light up as he says that the actual moment of transmission, the instant he gets HIV, will be "the most erotic thing I can imagine." He seems like a typical thirty-two-year-old man, but, in fact, he has a secret life. Carlos is chasing the bug.
"I know what the risks are, and I know that putting myself in this situation is like putting a gun to my head," he says. Some of that mountain music that's so popular is playing, making the moment even more surreal as a Southern voice sings, "Keep on the sunny side of life" behind Carlos. "But I think it turns the other guy on to know that I'm negative and that they're bringing me into the brotherhood. That gets me off, too."
I met Carlos in New York's Greenwich Village, the neighborhood where he usually hangs out. He is tall, with a large build, and plenty of gay men find him attractive. His longish, curly-wavy hair is jet-black with golden highlights, and his face is soft and just a bit feminine. He has a very appealing smile and laugh, and he's a funny guy sometimes. The conversation veers from the banal -- his fascination with the reality show The Amazing Race -- to his desire for HIV. Carlos' tone never changes when switching from one topic to the other.
When asked whether he is prepared to live with HIV after that "erotic" moment, Carlos dismisses living with HIV as a minor annoyance. Like most bug chasers, he has the impression that the virus just isn't such a big deal anymore: "It's like living with diabetes. You take a few pills and get on with your life." Carlos spends the afternoon continually calling a man named Richard, someone he met on the Internet. They met on barebackcity.com about a year ago, while Carlos was still with his boyfriend. That boyfriend left because Carlos was having sex with other men and because he was interested in barebacking -- the practice of having sex without a condom. Carlos and Richard are arranging a "date" for later that day.
Carlos is part of an intricate underground world that has sprouted, driven almost completely by the Internet, in which men who want to be infected with HIV get together with those who are willing to infect them. The men who want the virus are called "bug chasers," and the men who freely give the virus to them are called "gift givers." While the rest of the world fights the AIDS epidemic and most people fear HIV infection, this subculture celebrates the virus and eroticizes it. HIV-infected semen is treated like liquid gold. Carlos has been chasing the bug for more than a year in a topsy-turvy world in which every convention about HIV is turned upside down. The virus isn't horrible and fearsome, it's beautiful and sexy -- and delivered in the way that is most likely to result in infection. In this world, the men with HIV are the most desired, and the bug chasers will do anything to get the virus -- to "get knocked up," to be "bred" or "initiated into the brotherhood."
Like a lot of sexual fetishes and extreme behaviors, bug chasing could not exist without the Internet, or at least it couldn't thrive. Prior to the advent of Web surfing and e-mail, it would have been practically impossible for bug chasing to happen in any great numbers, because it's still not acceptable to walk up to a stranger and say you want the virus. But the Internet's anonymity and broad access make it possible to find someone with like interests, no matter how outlandish. Carlos surfs online about twenty hours a week looking for men to have sex with, usually frequenting sites such as bareback.com and barebackcity.com, plus a number of Internet discussion groups. Most of the Web sites use the pretense that they actually are about barebacking, which is in itself risky and controversial but still a long way from bug chasing. For the Web sites, that distinction is at best razor-thin and more often just an outright lie. "We got Poz4Poz, Neg4Neg and bug chasers looking to join the club," the welcome page to barebackcity.com, which claims 48,000 registered users, up from 28,000 about a year ago, recently said. "Be the first to seed a newbie and give him a pozitive attitude!"
Within this online community, bug chasers revel in their desires, using their own lingo about "poz" and "neg" men, "bug juice" and "conversion" from negative to positive. User profiles include names such as BugChaser21, Knockmeup, BugMeSoon, ConvertMeSir, PozCum4NegHole and GiftGiver. The posters are upfront about seeking HIV, even extremely enthusiastic, possibly because the Web sites are about the only place a bug seeker can really express his desires openly. Under turn-ons, a poster called PozMeChgo craves a "hot poz load deep in me. I really want to be converted!! Breed me/seed me!" Carlos' profile on one Web site lists his screen name as ConvertMe, and he says he wants a man "to fill me up with that poison seed." His AOL Instant Messenger name is Bug Juice Wanted.
It's not uncommon to see people post replies to the profiles encouraging the men to seek HIV. One such comment reads, "This guy knows what he wants!! I would love to plant my seeds :)) Come and join the club. The more we are, the stronger we are." A Yahoo! spokeswoman confirms that the company shuts down such sites when it receives notice that the subscribers are promoting HIV infection or any other kind of harm to one another, but the company doesn't go looking for bug chasers in its thousands of discussion groups, most established by subscribers themselves. Recently, it was easy to find two discussion groups on Yahoo! that promoted bug chasing, one called barebackover50 and one called gayextremebareback. The first discussion group was established in 1998 and had 1,439 members at the end of 2002. Yahoo! closed the group after Rolling Stone inquired about it.
Condoms and safe sex are openly ridiculed on bug-chasing Web sites, with many bug chasers rebelling against what they see as the dogma of safe-sex education; constantly thinking about a deadly disease takes all the fun out of sex, they say, and condoms suck. Carlos agrees and says getting HIV will make safe sex a moot point. "It's about freedom," he says. "What else can happen to us after this? You can ----whoever you want, ---- as much as you want, and nothing worse can happen to you. Nothing bad can happen after you get HIV."
For some, the chase is a pragmatic move. They see HIV infection as inevitable because of their unsafe sex or needle sharing, so they decide to take control of the situation and infect themselves. It's empowering. They're no longer victims waiting to be infected; rather they are in charge of their own fates. For others, deliberately infecting themselves is the ultimate taboo, the most extreme sex act left on the planet, and that has a strong erotic appeal for some men who have tried everything else. Still others feel lost and without any community to embrace them, and they see those living with HIV as a cohesive group that welcomes its new members and receives vast support from the rest of the gay community, and from society as a whole. Bug chasers want to be a part of that club. Some want HIV because they think once they have it they can go on with a wild, uninhibited sex life without constant fears of the virus. Getting the bug opens the door to sexual nirvana, they say. Others can't stand the thought of being so unlike their HIV-positive lover.
For Carlos, bug chasing is mostly about the excitement of doing something that everyone else sees as crazy and wrong. Keeping this part of his life secret is part of the turn-on for Carlos, which is not his real name. That forbidden aspect makes HIV infection incredibly exciting for him, so much so that he now seeks out sex exclusively with HIV-positive men. "This is something that no one knows about me," Carlos says. "It's mine. It's my dirty little secret." He compares bug chasing to the thrill that you get by screwing your boyfriend in your parents' house, or having sex on your boss' desk. You're not supposed to do it, and that's exactly what makes it so much fun, he says, laughing.
Carlos carries another secret that he says heightens the thrill of pursuing HIV. Sometimes he volunteers in the offices of Gay Men's Health Crisis, the pre-eminent HIV-prevention and AIDS-activist organization in New York. And about once a month, he does outreach volunteering in which he goes to clubs to hand out condoms and educate men about safe sex.
Carlos should meet Doug Hitzel, but he probably never will. A year ago they might have been online buddies, both sharing a passion for HIV that few others understood. Now Hitzel understands all too clearly what bug chasing can do to a young man's life, but it's too late for him. After six months of bug chasing, Hitzel succeeded in getting the virus. He's now a twenty-one-year-old freshman at a Midwestern university, so wholesome-looking you'd think he just walked out of a cornfield.
Hitzel's experience started when he moved from his home in Nebraska to San Francisco with his boyfriend. When that relationship broke up, Hitzel was at the lowest point in his life, and alone. He sought relief in drugs and sex, as much of each as he could get. At first, he started out just not caring whether he got HIV or not, then he found the bug-chasing underground and embraced it. He was sure he'd get HIV soon anyway. He thought he would always feel exactly like he did then; he was certain that ten, twenty, thirty years later he'd still be partying every night. It lasted only six months -- then Hitzel got sick with awful flulike symptoms and lost a lot of weight. A doctor's visit cleared him of hepatitis and other possible problems, but the clinic sent him home with an HIV test he could do himself. Hitzel waited before doing the test and decided to go home to Nebraska, to give up the bug chasing and the rest of the life that was killing him. Once he got home, he did the test and found out he was positive. He now wakes up each day with a terrible frustration that's just below the surface of his once sunny demeanor. He hates the medication he has to take every day, and he realizes that HIV affects nearly every part of his life. While he was bug chasing, Hitzel couldn't imagine ever wanting to be in a relationship again. But now that he's getting his life back in order, he realizes that being HIV-positive can be a roadblock to new relationships.
"Whenever I have to deal with things like medication, days when I'm really down," Hitzel says, "I have to look myself in the mirror and say, 'You did this. Are you happy now?' That's the one line that goes through my head: 'Are you happy now?' " He says it with a snarl, full of anger. "Some days I feel really angry and guilty. I'm pretty much adjusted to the fact that this is my life, but about forty percent of the time I look at myself and say, 'Look what you've done. Happy now?' "
Looking back on it, Hitzel says he was committing suicide by chasing HIV, killing himself slowly because he didn't have the nerve to do it quickly. Hitzel is ashamed and embarrassed that he actually sought HIV, but he's willing to tell his story because he hopes to dissuade others who are on the same path. He gets angry when he hears bug chasers talking in the same ways he talked a year earlier. The mention of "bug chasing" and "gift giving" sets him off.
" 'Bug chasing' sounds like a group of kindergartners running around chasing grasshoppers and butterflies," Hitzel says, "a beautiful thing. And gift giving? What the hell is that? I just wish the terms would actually put some real context into what's going on. Why did I not want to say that I was deliberately infecting myself? Because saying the word infect sounds bad and gross and germy. I wanted it to be sexualized." He's particularly angered by the idea of HIV being erotic: "How about you follow me after I start new medications and you watch me throw up for a few weeks? Tell me how erotic that is."
Though he's older, Carlos lives a life that has a lot in common with Hitzel's in San Francisco. Carlos estimates that he has had several hundred sex partners throughout his life, and he routinely hooks up with three or four guys a week, all of them HIV-positive or at least uncertain about their status.
That's a common trait among bug chasers, says Dr. Bob Cabaj, director of behavioral-health services for San Francisco County and past president of both the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association and the Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrists. Cabaj (pronounced suh-bye) calls bug chasing "a real phenomenon." Some bug chasers are more likely to have a defeatist attitude, to think they'll eventually get HIV anyway, whereas others are more likely to add the element of eroticizing HIV, Cabaj says: "For kids who have had a really hard time fitting in or being accepted, this becomes like a fraternity."
As a public official, Cabaj is familiar with how the topic makes people uncomfortable. Most AIDS activists prefer to deny that the problem exists to any significant extent, he says: "They don't want to address that this is a real ongoing issue."
When I asked about bug chasing, leaders of groups such as Gay Men's Health Crisis in New York, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, the Stop AIDS Project, and the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation weren't interested in providing much education or increasing public awareness. To the contrary, most were dismissive of the issue and some actively dissuaded me from writing the article at all. A spokeswoman for the Stop AIDS Project, Shana Krochmal, characterized bug chasing as "relatively minor acting-out" and aggressively encouraged me to drop the article idea altogether, saying the issue is "not big enough to warrant a trend story." Krochmal cautioned against focusing on "just a bunch of really vocal guys who want to continue this image of being reckless, hedonistic gay men who will do anything to get laid. I think that does a disservice to the community at large." The San Francisco AIDS Foundation labeled the issue "sensational" and would not provide further comment. GLAAD spokeswoman Cathy Renna was more helpful, saying she had heard enough about bug chasing to be concerned, emphasizing that her group's focus would be whether people use bug chasing as an easy way to disparage all gays and lesbians as sex-crazed and reckless. "The vast majority of the gay community would be just as surprised and appalled by this as anyone else," she says.
At GMHC, where Carlos is one of more than 7,000 volunteers, spokesman Marty Algaze calls bug chasing "one of those very underground subcultures or fetishes that seems to have sprung up in recent years." The assistant director of community education at GMHC, Daniel Castellanos, acknowledges that bug chasing exists but claims there's not much need to discuss it because it involves such a small population. But would he try to talk a bug chaser out of trying to get HIV? "If someone comes to me and says he wants to get HIV, I might work with him around why he wants to do it," he says. "But if in the end that's a decision he wants to make, there's a point where we have to respect people's decisions."
Cabaj, the San Francisco psychiatrist, says those arguments sound familiar. Then, without being asked, he adds, "But I don't know if it's an active cover-up." He pauses for a moment, then continues, "Yeah, it's an active cover-up, because they know about it. They're in denial of this issue. This is a difficult issue that dredges up some images about gay men that they don't want to have to deal with. They don't want to shine a light on this topic because they don't want people to even know that this behavior exists."
Public-health officials also tend to dismiss the bug-chasing phenomenon, he adds, assuming that it is just an aberration practiced by a few, nothing more than a curiosity. Cabaj adamantly disagrees, though he admits numbers are very hard to come by. Some men consciously seek the virus, openly declaring themselves bug chasers, he says, while many more are just as actively seeking HIV but are in denial and wouldn't call themselves bug chasers. Cabaj estimates that at least twenty-five percent of all newly infected gay men fall into that category.
With about 40,000 new infections in the United States per year, according to government reports, that would mean around 10,000 each year are attributable to that more liberal definition of bug chasing. Doug Hitzel says he fits that description. Though he now says he was a bug chaser for six months, he explains that he would not have admitted it to anyone outside the subculture, and he sometimes even lied to himself about what he was doing. Even if you consider only the number of self-proclaimed bug chasers and not the overall group of men seeking HIV, Cabaj still sees cause for concern because of the way one bug chaser's quest can spread the virus far beyond his own life. "It may be a small number of actual people, but they may be disproportionately involved in continuing the spread of HIV," he says. "That's a major issue when you're talking about how to control the spread of a virus. A small percentage could be responsible for continuing the infection. The clinical impact is profound, no matter how small the numbers."
The problem is not restricted to any one community. Cabaj's counterpart in Boston reports a similar experience with bug chasers. Dr. Marshall Forstein is medical director of mental health and addiction services at Fenway Community Health, an arm of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center that specializes in care for gay and lesbian patients. Forstein is on the medical-school faculty in psychiatry at Harvard University and chaired the American Psychiatric Association's Commission on AIDS for eleven years. He says bug chasers are seen regularly in the Fenway health system, and the phenomenon is growing. He adds that bug chasers can be found in any major city, though officials might be reluctant to discuss the issue either because it is unseemly or because it has escaped their notice. A spokesman for the Los Angeles County Department of Health confirms that bug chasers are known in its health system. Public-health officials in New York refused multiple requests for comment.
One standout in public-health circles is the Miami-Dade County Health Department in Florida, which is taking steps specifically to address bug chasing. Evelyn Ullah, director of its office of HIV/AIDS, readily admits that bug chasing is "a definite problem" in the Miami area, having become more common and more visible in the past few years. Miami health officials regularly monitor Internet sites for bug chasing in their community, and they keep track of "conversion parties," in which the goal is to have positive men infect negative men. The health department also is launching new outreach efforts that include going online to chat with bug chasers and others pursuing risky sex.
Cabaj and Forstein stress that more should be done, particularly on a national level. For starters, federal health officials will have to familiarize themselves with the problem. Dr. Robert Janssen, director of the division of HIV/AIDS Prevention at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, says he has never seen the Web sites that promote bug chasing and does not know of any organized efforts to spread the virus. There is virtually no research on people who intentionally seek HIV, he says, but he notes that several studies have shown a growing complacency among gay men and the population in general about the risk of HIV and a misconception that HIV infection is completely manageable. Ongoing outbreaks of syphilis and gonorrhea (which Carlos recently had) in large cities indicate a tendency to forgo condom use, he says. Recent data from the CDC show that syphilis rates among men in the United States rose 15.4 percent between 2000 and 2001, which the researchers attribute to outbreaks among gay and bisexual men in several U.S. cities. Janssen says the CDC has not addressed bug chasing in any way but might if researchers determine that it is a significant method of spreading the virus. "I'm interested that you're saying there's that much out there on the Web and that it's easy to find," Janssen says. "If we can confirm that it's happening to any real degree beyond just an anecdote here and there, we may need to address it."
What frustrates health-care professionals the most, Forstein says, is that "gay men who are doing this haven't a clue what they're doing," he says. "They're incredibly selfish and self-absorbed. They don't have any idea what's going on with the epidemic in terms of the world or society or what impact their actions might have. The sense of being my brother's keeper is never discussed in the gay community because we've gone to the extreme of saying gay men with HIV can do no wrong. They're poor victims, and we can't ever criticize them."
Furthering the epidemic doesn't bother Carlos. Bug chasing requires a great deal of self-delusion, and he easily acknowledges the contradictions in what he's doing. He notes that while he seeks HIV, he doesn't eat junk food or smoke, and that he drinks only socially. "I take care of myself," he says proudly. He also notes the hypocrisy in his doing volunteer work at GMHC, in which he tells other men to use condoms and practice safe sex, while he's hunting for partners for his secret hobby. The conflict doesn't bother him in the least.
Forstein says that attitude is disastrous for gay men. "We're killing each other," he says. "It's no longer just the Matthew Shepards that are dying at the hands of others. We're killing each other. We have to take responsibility for this as a community."
After several phone calls to work out a time, Carlos is ready to go see Richard. He's had sex with Richard about thirty times in the past year. "Knowing he's positive just makes it more fun for me," he says. "It's erotic that someone is breeding me." Richard is in the entertainment business, in his mid- to late forties.
"Lots of guys want to know who breeds them," Carlos continues. "When I have sex, I like to always make it special, a really good time, something nice and memorable in case that is the one that gives it to me."
Carlos offers, not for the first time, to have me come along and watch him and Richard have sex, but I decline. In the taxi to Richard's place, the conversation falls silent. He hasn't been tested in a couple of years, and he's reluctant to get a test now. He might very well be positive already. But as long as he doesn't know for sure, he can always hope that tonight is the night he gets the virus. Every date is potentially The One. Stepping out of the cab into the rain, I ask what he will do if he finds out one day that he has succeeded in being infected -- ending the fun of being a bug chaser. He stops, then says he might move on to being a gift giver: "If I know that he's negative and I'm ----ing him, it sort of gets me off. I'm murdering him in a sense, killing him slowly, and that's sort of, as sick as it sounds, exciting to me."
AIDS and gay activists in the US have expressed dismay at the appointment of an evangelical Christian who, it is alleged, calls being gay a "deathstyle" to the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV and AIDS (PACHA).
The views of Thacker on HIV prevention have also caused concern. He is an advocate of the abstinence-only policy currently favoured by the Bush administration which says that sexual abstinence is the only sure way to prevent HIV, and does not mention condoms as an effective way of preventing HIV.
"We find him frightening", said David Smith, a spokesperson for the Human Rights Campaign, the largest gay rights organisation in the USA, on Thacker's appointment, adding that it was evidence that the Bush White House "is focusing on ideology not science when it comes to AIDS."
Scepter Institute - About the Founder How could it be? Jerry and Sue were committed Christians. They had been faithful to each other throughout their 14 years of marriage. They should never have been at risk for the disease. Then they remembered Sue's third pregnancy. The delivery had required a blood transfusion -- blood that investigators would later discover was tainted. Sue contracted HIV in the hospital. Jerry got the virus from Sue. The daughter born in that difficult delivery would later test positive for HIV, as well.
Sexual Abstinence Behind Uganda's AIDS Success Story Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Some experts say the dramatic drop in HIV/AIDS infections in Uganda is proof that abstinence from sex is the best way to combat the deadly disease, especially in the world's hardest-hit area, sub-Saharan Africa.
Demand O'Reilly, Fox not silence Stephen Bennett As if Bill O'Reilly's on-air bludgeoning of Stephen Bennett wasn't enough, Fox News now is threatening a lawsuit to silence the truth and scuttle a much-needed ministry that helps homosexuals.
Since the first federal resources were made available to state and local health agencies for AIDS prevention in 1985, federal funding, which now includes money for research, treatment, and housing, has skyrocketed to $13 billion for fiscal 2003. As a result of the work of highly mobilized lobbying forces, more is spent per patient on AIDS than on any other disease, though it does not even currently rank among the top 15 causes of death in the United States. In one year, 1998, heart disease, the nation's leading cause of death, killed 724,859 Americans only 6.8 percent less than the 774,767 who have contracted AIDS in the last 20 years.2 Of those 774,767 total AIDS cases, 462,766 have died. During that same period, 14 million Americans 30 times more have died of heart disease.
Research expenditures at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) demonstrate the uneven use of federal resources. In 1996, NIH spent an average of $1,160 for every heart disease death, $4,700 for every cancer death, and a whopping $43,000 for every AIDS death.3 Even though they get far less research money, that year heart disease killed 24 times more and cancer killed 17 times more than the number of people who died from AIDS in 1996, when AIDS was still the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S.
In addition to research, the U.S. government spends large amounts on AIDS prevention and social programs. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) spent $795 million on prevention in fiscal 2001. But questions have arisen regarding the misuse of some of that money.
HIV and AIDS prevention and social programs have long been cash cows for politically correct nonprofit firms and government bureaucracies. In their book, Private Choices and Public Health: The AIDS Epidemic in an Economic Perspective, University of Chicago economist Tomas J. Philipson and law professor Richard A. Posner concluded that the AIDS epidemic has been overstated in almost every imaginable way in order to gain more funding. They contended, "pressure from small, but organized, groups [including] male homosexuals, health professionals, government bureaucrats, and moral conservatives has deflected AIDS programs from their efficient path."9
In 1998, heart disease 118,151 people under the age of 65.24 Cancer killed 157,255 people under age 65 that year.25 That is nine times more and 13 times more, respectively, than AIDS, which killed approximately 12,000 people under age 65 in 1998.26 In all age groups, including the under 65 group, the death rates for heart disease and cancer have remained steady while AIDS deaths have been in decline since 1993. Furthermore, a typical AIDS case costs approximately the same amount to treat as a terminal cancer case approximately $40,000 to $50,000 per year.27
In 1998, AIDS ranked 17th in the leading causes of death among Americans, behind, among others, heart disease, cancer, emphysema and asthma, pneumonia and influenza, diabetes, suicide, Alzheimer's disease, homicide, and hypertension.28 Despite this, AIDS receives more funding than any other disease. In 1996, NIH spent 43 times more on AIDS than it did on heart disease and nine times more than it spent on all cancers.29
Some AIDS activists think it could be detrimental that AIDS receives much more money than other diseases. Martin Delaney, founder of the HIV treatment information organization Project Inform says that by giving AIDS so much funding, the federal government makes it "almost an advantage to be HIV-positive."30
After SFDPH worker Seth Watkins admitted in an August 2001 New York Times article that he sometimes went to San Francisco bars and ended up having unprotected sex, Tierney did not reprimand him. Instead Tierney, told The San Francisco Chronicle that his employee's sex life was that employee's business.57 Watkins is not the only AIDS prevention worker under scrutiny for such behavior. In 1999, Luis Diaz, director of the HIV and AIDS program for the Nevada Association of Latin Americans was accused of having unprotected sex with two people without informing them of his AIDS infection.
There are AIDS prevention success stories, but they aren't coming from American "health" organizations like SFDPH. In the 1990s, the prevalence of AIDS in Uganda hung around the 30 percent mark. Today only 6 percent of Ugandans have AIDS. A recent Africa News article says the Ugandan government attributes this drop to programs like the School Health Education Project, which, instead of sex and flirting seminars, include discussion and debate on the reality of living with AIDS. The article says, "More emphasis [is] put on the fact that HIV/AIDS has no cure and that abstinence from sex [is] the best way to avoid the pandemic."59
Upon her retirement as Director of the National Center for HIV, STD, and TB Prevention at CDC, Dr. Helene Gayle said of her progress, "Nearly every adult can tell you what AIDS is and how it is spread." Adult prevention and education programs are wasted in well-educated, urban populations that glamorize the behavior that spreads the disease.
America is at war against AIDS and against terrorism. The waste of federal AIDS dollars does a disservice to taxpayers, and most importantly, to the victims and those at risk of contracting the disease. The nation cannot be expected to win those wars unless it gets serious about eliminating wasteful, fraudulent, and abusive AIDS programs.
Need for Sustained HIV Prevention Among Men who Have Sex with Men In the United States, HIV-related illness and death historically have had a tremendous impact on men who have sex with men (MSM). Even though the toll of the epidemic among injection drug users (IDUs) and heterosexuals has increased during the last decade, MSM continue to account for the largest number of people reported with AIDS each year. In 2000 alone, 13,562 AIDS cases were reported among MSM, compared with 8,531 among IDUs and 6,530 among men and women who acquired HIV heterosexually.
Overall, the number of MSM of all races and ethnicities who are living with AIDS has increased steadily, partly as a result of the 1993 expanded AIDS case definition and, more recently, of improved survival.
Abundant evidence shows a need to sustain prevention efforts for each generation of young gay and bisexual men. We cannot assume that the positive attitudinal and behavioral change seen among older men also applies to younger men. Recent data on HIV prevalence and risk behaviors suggest that young gay and bisexual men continue to place themselves at considerable risk for HIV infection and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
These data highlight the need to design more effective prevention efforts for gay and bisexual men of color. The involvement of community and opinion leaders in prevention efforts will be critical for overcoming cultural barriers to prevention, including homophobia. For example, there remains a tremendous stigma to acknowledging gay and bisexual activity in African American and Hispanic communities. Need to Combat Other STDs
Need to Combat Other STDs
Studies among MSM who are treated in STD clinics have shown consistently high percentages of HIV infection, ranging from nearly 4% in Seattle to a high of almost 36% in Atlanta. (See CDC's National HIV Prevalence Surveys, 1997 Summary, Table 1.) Some studies have shown that the likelihood of both acquiring and spreading HIV is 2-5 times greater in people with STDs, and that aggressively treating STDs in a community may help to reduce the rate of new HIV infections. Along with prompt attention to and treatment of STDs, efforts to reduce the behaviors that spread STDs are critical.
Thus, the sin of the two groups of men in Sodom and Gibeah is, in both instances, the desire to engage in homosexual rape. But there is validity in connecting this sin to the violation of the norm of hospitality. There is weight to the suggestion that the desire to rape the visitors is less the expression of homosexual desire and activity per se, and more the use of forcible homosexual rape to express dominance over the strangers. This practice occurred in the Ancient Middle East when armies were defeated, and it occurs today in certain all-male settings, such as prisons. This is supported by the fact that in both instances, when women were offered to the men, both groups of men initially rejected the offer. The conclusion, more clearly for Sodom than for Gibeah, is that the goal of homosexual rape is the male inhabitants' desire to express their dominance over the strangers.
Conclusion to the Psychological Effects of Combat - Dave Grossman, Author
It is often said that "All's fair in love and war," and this expression provides a valuable insight into the human psyche, since these twin, taboo fields of sexuality and aggression represent the two realms in which most individuals will consistently deceive both themselves and others. Our psychological and societal inability to confront the truth about the effects of combat is the foundation for the cultural conspiracy of repression, a deception and denial that has helped to perpetuate and propagate war throughout recorded history.
In the field of developmental psychology, a mature adult is sometimes defined as someone who has attained a degree of insight and self-control in the two areas of sexuality and aggression. This is also a useful definition of maturity in civilizations. Thus, two important and reassuring trends in recent years have been the development of the science of human sexuality, which has been termed "sexology," and a parallel development of the science of human aggression, which D. Grossman has termed "killology." There is a universal consensus that continued research in this previously taboo realm of human aggression is vital to the future development, and perhaps to the very existence, of our civilization.
Igras primary value to us today is that he was an eyewitness to the changes that occurred in Germany; an eyewitness with a uniquely prophetic sense of the danger of "gay" influence in society. I consider it a great privilege to be able to review his work for the modern reader.
Igras Thesis: Homosexuality Was at the Root of Nazi Evil
"I had finished the writing of [Germany's National Vice]," writes Samuel Igra, "when my attention was called to a British White Paper, Concerning the treatment of German Nationals (including the Jews) in Germany, in which the following statement is made: The explanation for this outbreak of sadistic cruelty may be that sexual perversion, and, in particular, homosexuality, are very prevalent in Germany. It seems to me that mass sexual perversion may offer an explanation of this otherwise inexplicable outbreak. [Page 20. His Majesty's Stationary Office, 1939].
"The author of that statement is Mr. R. T. Smallbones, who was British Consul-General at Frankfort-on-Main from 1932 until the outbreak of the war in 1939. Previous to 1932 he had been stationed in other German cities. His opinion therefore rests on firsthand experience of the German people for a long period of years. I am convinced that his explanation is the correct one. For, as a matter of fact, the widespread existence of sexual perversion in Germany, not only at the time the Hitler movement rose to power but also under the Kaiser's regime, is notorious... And authorities on criminal sociology are agreed that there is a causal connection between mass sexual perversion and the kind of mass atrocities committed by the Germans (ibid:7).
The Roehm Purge, then, was not a "moral cleansing" of the Nazi ranks, but a re-alignment of power behind the German government which was primarily forced upon Hitler by powerful political elements whose support he needed to maintain control. Igra goes on to point out that not only did the majority of the SA homosexuals survive the purge, but that the massacre was largely implemented by homosexuals.
There is no question that homosexuality figures prominently in the history of the Holocaust. As we have noted, the ideas for disposing of the Jews originated with Lanz von Leibenfels. The first years of terrorism against the Jews were carried out by the homosexuals of the SA. The first concentration camp, as well as the system for training its brutal guards, was the work of Ernst Roehm. The first pogrom, Kristallnacht, was orchestrated in 1938 by the homosexual Reinhard Heydrich. And it was the transvestite Goering who started the "evolution of the Final Solution...[with an] order to Heydrich (Jan. 24, 1939) concerning the solution of the Jewish question by 'emigration' and 'evacuation'" (Robinson:25).International Committee for Holocaust Truth: 1996 Report
That sadomasochism and homoeroticism often occur together with Nazism in the Holocaust film is a fact that has long been recognized and is frequently observed. Ilan Avisar, in Screening the Holocaust, traces what he calls the connection of Nazism and "sexual deviance" to Rossellinis Open City. Gerd Gemünden suggests that in 1942, "the association of male homosexuality with sadism and perversion [as in the effeminate portrayal of Heydrich in Hangmen Also Die] anticipates postwar films such as The Damned (Visconti 1969) and Night Porter (Cavani 1974)."
 Ilan Avisar, Screening the Holocaust: Cinemas Images of the Unimaginable (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1988), pp. 134-48
 Gerd Gemünden, "Brecht in Hollywood: Hangmen Also Die and the Anti-Nazi Film," TDR 43 (4) (Winter 1999): 65-7; The earliest book in English to conflate Nazism with sexual perversion was Samuel Igras Germany's National Vice (London: Quality Press, Ltd., 1945).
The Sexual Rage Behind Islamic Terror ALL SERIAL KILLERS, almost without exception, are severely sexually abused as children. The kind of people who hijack a plane with innocent people and drive it into a building with thousands of other innocent people are related to this phenomenon.
In this culture, males sexually penetrating males becomes a manifestation of male power, conferring a status of hyper-masculinity. It is considered to have nothing to do with homosexuality. An unmarried man who has sex with boys is simply doing what men do. As the scholar Bruce Dunne has demonstrated, sex in Islamic societies is not about mutuality between partners, but about the adult male's achievement of pleasure through violent domination.
There is silence around this issue. It is the silence that legitimizes sexual violence against women, such as honor crimes and female circumcision. It is also the silence that forces victimized Arab boys into invisibility. Even though the society does not see their sexual exploitation as being humiliating, the psychological and emotional scars that result from their subordination, powerlessness and humiliation is a given. Traumatized by the violation of their dignity and manliness, they spend the rest of their lives trying to get it back.
Violating the masculinity of the enemy necessitates the dishing out of severe violence against him. In the recent terrorist strikes, therefore, violence against Americans served as a much-needed release of the terrorists' bottled-up sexual rage. Moreover, it served as a desperate and pathological testament of the re-masculinization of their emasculated selves. Ñ
...the Nazi movement was "in fact and by certain aspects of its avowed ideology drenched through and through with homo-erotic feeling and practice." He also wrote that the Nazis identified with the ancient Greeks and were "well-purged of Judaeo-Christian inhibitions" while "returning to the noble practices of their Greek ancestors," although encumbered by "an obscure feeling of guilt inherited from 1,500 years of apparent submission to the Judaeo-Christian ethic." Ludwig Lewisohn, "The New Kultur," The Nation, June 21, 1933, p. 695. Ñ
Vol. 18, No. 04
Seeking expert comment regarding the AAPs endorsement of homosexual adoption, AP writer Lindsey Tanner called up Steven Drizin, "an attorney with Northwestern Universitys Children and Family Justice Center." Not surprisingly, Drizin applauded the AAPs decision: "The stamp of approval from a widely respected and mainstream organization will go a long way to further the movement throughout courts and legislatures."
Drizins organization, however, is neither "widely respected" nor "mainstream." Its present director is Bernadine Dohrn, who received that position shortly after her name was removed from the FBIs "Most Wanted" list. Along with her husband, Bill Ayers, Dohrn co-founded the Weather Underground, a domestic terrorist group sponsored by the Soviet Union and Cuba that carried out a string of bombings, robberies, and other crimes in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In his self-serving memoir Fugitive Days, Ayers celebrates his terrorist exploits, including bombing the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon.
By supporting the AAPs most recent assault on the family, Dohrn and her associates are continuing that terrorist campaign by other means. "Were against everything thats good and decent in [bourgeois] America," expounded Dohrns Weathermen comrade John Jacobs during a December 1969 "War Council" in Flint, Michigan. Former 1960s leftists David Horowitz and Peter Collier note that the Weathermen conducted orgies as a way of ridding their recruits of "bourgeois" moral inhibitions that would interfere with the work of terrorism. "One of the last taboos was homosexuality, and the Weather command forced itself toward experimentation in this direction, instructing male and female cadres to make it with members of the same sex," they note in their book Destructive Generation. Ñ
Gay Nazis: the Role of Homosexuality in Nazism & Hitler's Rise to ... Thus butch hypermasculinity, visibility for homosexuals, and organization were the three necessary ingredients in the mix which allowed the SA leaders to make their unique and essential contribution to the rise of Nazism. Another important consideration is that visibility is enabled when homosexuality assumes a political voice. In this way, the politicization of homosexuality, which supported gays in the process of socially identifying themselves as such, was a necessary condition for Hitler's success.
IMHO, this is the same mindset that drives the overall gay agenda.
not a word of criticism of these gays will emerge in the main stream press
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