Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Tenofovir Abuse

This is an email exchange that I thought I should share with all of you. Tony, the great man who has brought us PodcastPSA, sent me the first message yesterday evening. I go so worked up that I wrote him the message below and I think everyone should read it.

Also check out the link that Tony provided and also check out the article in this month's issue of Out magazine on the abuse of Tenofovir. Its a good intro to the problem that is occuring.

Hey Adam,
Thanks for your podcast today. I've been doing some research on the Tenofovir/Barebacking phenomenon.
is a very interesting article + comments.
I was chatting to Brad (willing warrior) about this: we're as incensed as you are.
What shall we do about it?



Thanks for the article I will definately read it through and give the plight some thought.

Honestly Tony I'm so enraged when I read shit like this it takes me a while to collect my thoughts on the matter. My rage stems from the fact that I lost a brother to HIV. A beautiful man was destroyed by this virus and no one seems to get how horrible it is to see someone decay right before your eyes. It's insulting to hear about people acting so selfishly that I almost want to say "they deserve everything they get."

My rage then mutates into discouragement. The people that work in the field of immunology research, specifically at the CDC, are breaking thier asses day and night trying to keep one step ahead of this shit. When breakthroughs are made the media announces it and everyone thinks its okay to fuck like its 1970 again and I wonder why are we bothering? The same goes for when a drug hits the market and people start abusing it in the way Tenofavir is being abused, it pisses me off. Someone worked to discover that drug to save lives and there are people that are tearing that effort down nigght after night and in effect killing the people that really need it. Those that abuse Tenofavir are no different than Roy Kohn with his secret stash of AZT. People are dedicating and giving their lives, researcher, HIV patient, and laymen alike, to fight this disease I feel like the gay community at large is ungrateful. Sometimes I think there needs to be the level of death that there was in the 80s and early 90s so this generation that is coming into its own now can SEE with their own eyes what HIV does to a person.

My rage comes to me from the fact that people would rather fill their minds with fabricated human drama via the outlets of CBS, NBC, FOX, CNN, ABC etc. so forth and so on. What will it take to communicate to people that HIV is still here and that there is real suffering happening in the world all around them? What will it take to make people care more about a man who has been abandoned by his friends and family that lay dying in a hospice alone than they do about a multi-millionaire white male competeing for the affections of Donald Trump?! What will it take for people to realize that if they have unprotected sex their chances of contracting HIV are higher than the chances that their guess as to who will be eliminated from American Idol will be correct?!

Once my thoughts calm down I realize that we need to keep doing what we've always been doing. Educate educate educate. Test test test. Condoms condoms condoms. That and I think those of us that are the survivors of the ones we have lost have to tell their stories no matter how greusome they may seem to others. History is bound to repeat itself if its not passed on to future generations. The events of the past, their consequences and how they came to be, need to be wholly understood. With that said maybe people need to be encouraged to be more open about the losses they've suffered. Maybe its time that we help the ghosts of those that we've lost rattle their chains a little bit louder.



Blogger DanNation said...

With a former partner who willingly exposed himself to HIV (and became poz) so that "he wouldn't have to worry about it anymore," this also outrages me. And with a White House that will only educate on abstinance and who asked the U.S. Health Department to remove all GLBT information from its web site, its only going to get worse.

It makes me really angry.

11:45 AM  
Blogger joey said...

I am so lucky I have been insulated from the issue. I have had friends die over the years, but no one in my circle is currently positive. I can't comprehend why one would expose one's self willingly. I just can't.

1:34 PM  
Blogger Donnie said...

I had no idea this phenomenon was even occurring - how fucking scary. It amazes me that there are people out there that would put their own lives and other people's lives at risk this way. I absolutely agree - more needs to be done and said to bring attention to this and every aspect of HIV and AIDS. It's NOT going away and it kills me to know that there are people out there that are so careless that they give no thought to those that have died from it, those that have lost loved ones from it, those that are fighting for a cure, etc. Something needs to be done...

1:37 PM  
Blogger Seeker Onos said...

That website you linked has a particular agenda, which could be a rather interesting alternative to the problem.

Yet people are very anal and/or role fixated. The practioners of what that site endorses are pretty much a small niche.

But if you think about it, anytime one gets down to exchanging intimate bodily fluids with someone else (regardless of methods, genders, or numbers involved) there will always be that risk factor. Some methods being more risky than others... and that is before we get into drug cocktails and steroids or "Tweakers".

I particularly don't get "bugchasers" either.

It's all about using common sense, which apparently is very lacking amongst our kind (that is, humans).

11:37 PM  
Blogger Brad said...

perfectly expressed thoughts my friend and so well written. and I am sorry for your loss :(

12:22 AM  
Blogger tornwordo said...

very discouraging, I agree. I read that article, and it made me feel like I wasn't a true gay, because I don't engage in all of the detailed scat-involved sexual activities. But thank God I don't, probably what has saved me.

7:06 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Grrrrr. Some people can be so reckless with their lives. This just annoys me. I could go off into a rant here, but the heart is starting to skip beats already, so I have to calm down.

10:46 AM  

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