KT84
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    • KT84

      Kyle, thank you for your thorough and thoughtful response.Istill don’t trust the 50% statistic butIdon’t doubt people under report so it might be hard to ever getatrue number. As for the breakdown between prevention education and the raw data,Ihate to say this butIthink ignorance and carelessness playalarge part. To many young gay men, HIV is just not that big ofadeal.Ihave heard people say it is treatable like diabetes (ignoring the fact that diabetes isavery serious disease). Now we have the porn studios going condom-free, which sends the message to many young gay men that condoms aren’t neccessary (I imagine most gay men of the past 20 years have learned the basics of gay sex from porn. Where else would they learn?). To some guys, they want sex now-forget asking about sexual history oracondom.Ithink this is the major issue we have to tackle in terms of risky behavior.
      Idefinitely get what you are saying about overcoming the stigma of our past sexual history and its important to talk about risky sex (sorry,Istill feel barebacking isaporn category). Its just that its going to be very difficult. You say you don’t want to shame people andIagree-but how can we prevent or minimize risky behavior if we don’t warn against it and highlight the negative consequences? Wouldn’t that be considered shaming to some?
      Irememberaquote from Jack Mackenroth on AfterElton about his HIV activism-I am paraphrasing but he basically says on one hand you want to get rid of the stigma against HIV positive individuals; on the other you want to prevent negative folks from becoming positive.Ifeel it is the same here-we don’t want to condemn people who have had risky sex but we don’t want to promote it either.

      Its can beafine line sometimes between shaming and condoning-andIthink that is why so many people have jumped all over the original post. To many, especially those who lived through the 80s and 90s, sex withoutacondom is mindblowingly stupid and to them, pointing out that many engage in that behavior is tantamount to endorsing it. To others, growing up inaworld where AIDS is less prevelant and HIV more treatable (and where marriage equality has taken over most LGBT advocacy groups), condoms can beanuisance and pointing out their effectiveness is nagging and shaming of sexual freedom. It will difficult to force both sides to discuss the issues-butIguess nothing worth doing is easy (or some other cliche lol).  AndIreally hope that you always practice safe sex. You are smart enough and aware enough to not choose momentary pleasure overalifetime of consequences.

    • KT84

      Sorry if this is a double post but my first post seems to have disappeared. I understand where you are coming from and I appreciate the dialogue you are trying to start. However, I do have a couple of issues with the post.    First, the 50% statistic. I’m pretty sure that statistic comes from men who use hook-up apps, not the general gay/bisexual/queer community. Big difference.    Second, you ask “Are men who engage in barebacking sex really self-destructive, uneducated, or unfamiliar with the risk?” The answer to the second two is “many actually are”. Recent CDC data shows that many of the states with the highest infection rates are in Southern states with limited sex education. Even in more “liberal” states like NY and NJ sex education can be lacking. I don’t think the “Use a condom” method is not working; its just being ignored which is a different but just as important issue.    Third, race and politics play a role as well. The young African-American community is so underserved by both the LGBT orgs and HIV/AIDS orgs. Its no coincidence then that HIV runs rampant in that community. We need more education and outreach in this area, where just being gay can be a stigma.    Lastly, you wonder why men continue to engage in risky sex when they know the dangers of it (sorry but barebacking is not a term I think appropriate here). Maybe this is the simplistic explanation but here goes: men are horny and will frequently do risky or unsafe things for sex. Its why men cheat on their spouses, hook up in sketchy bar bathrooms, invite strangers into their homes for a quick fuck, spend hundreds of dollars on escorts, and fall into bed with ex-girlfriends and boyfriends. Maybe there’s more to it, maybe there’s not. I applaud you for trying to change the shame tactic many employ when confronted with those who has partaken in risky sex. But I can’t help but feel like the tone of the article was “Condoms aren’t working, maybe barebacking isn’t so bad, let’s talk about it”. I know it wasn’t but I can see why others would.

    • KT84

      I understand where you are coming from andIappreciate the dialogue you are trying to start. However,Ido haveacouple of issues with the post.  First, the 50% statistic. I’m pretty sure that statistic comes from men who use hook-up apps, not the general gay/bisexual/queer community. Big difference.  Second, you ask “Are men who engage in barebacking sex really self-destructive, uneducated, or unfamiliar with the risk?” The answer to the second two is “many actually are”. Recent CDC data shows that many of the states with the highest infection rates are in Southern states with limited sex education. Even in more “liberal” states like NY and NJ sex education can be lacking.Idon’t think the “Useacondom” method is not working; its just being ignored which isadifferent but just as important issue.  Third, race and politics playarole as well. The young African-American community is so underserved by both the LGBT orgs and HIV/AIDS orgs. Its no coincidence then that HIV runs rampant in that community. We need more education and outreach in this area, where just being gay can beastigma.  Lastly, you wonder why men continue to engage in risky sex when they know the dangers of it (sorry but barebacking is notatermIthink appropriate here). Maybe this is the simplistic explanation but here goes: men are horny and will frequently do risky or unsafe things for sex. Its why men cheat on their spouses, hook up in sketchy bar bathrooms, invite strangers into their homes foraquick fuck, spend hundreds of dollars on escorts, and fall into bed with ex-girlfriends and boyfriends. Maybe there’s more to it, maybe there’s not.Iapplaud you for trying to change the shame tactic many employ when confronted with those who has partaken in risky sex. ButIcan’t help but feel like the tone of the article was “Safe sex and condom education isn’t working, maybe barebacking isn’t so bad, let’s talk about it”.Iknow it wasn’t butIcan see why others would.