Here is my list of things that piss me off on today of all days – world aids day

1. The beetroot brigade

Now, we all know that eating well is good for you, all round. If you are sick, with anything, and eat well, you will get better faster. If you eat poorly, disease lurks and punishes your body big time. However, eating well does not cure diseases, least of all ones caused by viruses. HIV + people who eat well do have a better prognosis, but they are still HIV +.

 

2. The pharmaceutical bashers

These are often also members of the beetroot brigade. Of course the drug companies are making money from the ARV drugs they make. They are businesses who make money out of drugs production and sales. It’s called economics! To suggest that these companies created the HI – virus and are now selling unnecessary medicines to treat the disease is ridiculous. If they were going to, do you not think that maybe they would have made the epicentre of the disease fat rich American and not poverty struck Africa? Again – it’s economics!

 

3. The judges

These are usually middle class white people who get exasperated by having to replace their maid and/or gardener much too often than is convenient because they keep dying. ‘Don’t these people know about condoms?’ is their war cry. For many people, women mostly, in this country, sexual equality and any sexual power whatsoever are as alien a concept as compassion is to many of the judges. These women do not choose to have unprotected sex, or, often, any sex at all. They have no negotiating power when it comes to this aspect of their lives. That is the privilege of the middle classes!

 

4. The unaware

It is from this group that the questions are raised about why kids begging are not at school. ‘After all, it is 15 years since the birth of our new land and all kids have the same opportunities.’ Yeah right! The 12 year old AIDS orphans who are working the streets, begging and hooking, to feed their younger siblings have exactly the same opportunities as the rich kids off to their schools in air conditioned 4x4s.

 

5. The preachers of abstinence.

In an ideal world we would all rock up at our weddings pure and virginal and ride into the sunset with our soul mate. Only we are an infinity from that world. So saying that if the teenagers and young people didn’t have sex they would be safe and therefore it is a personal decision they make, and therefore infection is just deserts, is just beyond archaic. No condoms to school kids does not stop them from having sex – it just stops them from being safe. No condoms to prisoners does not stop them having sex – it just stops them from being safe. No condoms to underage girls does not stop them from having sex – it just stops them from being safe.

 

6. The punishment advocates

Anyone who has a god that they truly believes punishes people for sexual activity or drug use by giving them aids deserves an eternity with that god. What we all need to do to get this disease under control is to stop judging.

We need to admit that the sexual aspect of the transmission of this disease makes us uncomfortable, and get the hell over it.

570 000 people died last year in South Africa from AIDS related disease! More than half a million people! Our people, the people of our land!

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