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View Diary: Serophobia, or, Giving in to "Temptation" (166 comments)

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  •  The Patient Zero hypothesis has been (4+ / 0-)

    debunked by the scientists who have studied the genetic history of the disease and who had access to various historic samples.

    But there is so little comprehensive, widely available, histories of the early days of the epidemic for those of us who didn't live it that you can't ignore And The Band Played On.

    •  I don't suggest ignoring it. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Me, corvo, side pocket, EdSF

      I just think we need to be careful about some of the conclusions Shilts seemed ready to draw.  The whole Patient Zero thing is one of them.

      I lived through the early days of the epidemic in my own personal corner.  It's very hard to put it into any kind of perspective, and my memory is getting hazy about a lot of the details.  The thing that sticks out most is the fear and the not knowing.  For years we all went to bed every night wondering whether we would be next, because there was no way to tell who was infected and who wasn't.  If you were a gay man, you thought back on every moment of intimacy you'd ever experienced and wondered, "Did I get it then?"  Even worse, you kept asking yourself, "Did __ give it to me?"

      It was a time when you feared for yourself, and you suspected everyone around you.  My own terror made me unkind, and today I regret how I acted toward some people back then.  I find it hard to forgive myself for it all.

      I'm happy and relieved that we're in a better place today.  People who become infected now have good treatment options available, and in spite of the kind of serophobia displayed in this film, we poz folks don't face the kind of hysteria the early victims of AIDS did.  We're not where we need to be yet, but at least we're a hell of a lot better off than we were 30 years ago.

      "Ça c'est une chanson que j'aurais vraiment aimé ne pas avoir écrite." -- Barbara

      by FogCityJohn on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 04:10:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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