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25% of new cases of gay men...(22 posts)

25% of new cases of gay men...ClydeTri
Jan 23, 2003 9:25 AM
approx 25% of new cases of gay men who get AIDS do it on purpose...this is being reported in Rolling Stone and summarized at

the "gay media" is not coming out denying this subculture...make you proud of where your tax dollars are going where there are many more people dieing of cancer and AIDS (HIV) can be prevented through behavior modification?
link doesn't workDougSloan
Jan 23, 2003 9:38 AM
That doesn't make any sense. Even assuming it's true, why on earth would anyone do that?
link doesn't workClydeTri
Jan 23, 2003 9:41 AM
link is down..will post the report when it works...
I wouldn't worry about it...Wayne
Jan 23, 2003 9:49 AM
in a basically free society there are always going to be people that engage in behaviors that are dangerous to themselves and therefore in some sense burden us all by using tax dollars (but maybe not) to pay for medical bills. This seems to be a particularly unfortunate example of that but what's the alternative?

Do we ban homosexuality? That wouldn't work anyway to combat this, prohibition never works, right?
How about we carry your "behavior modification" theme to it's logical conclusion. No more smoking, no more "junk" foods, how about speed restrictors on cars (no one needs to drive faster than 65 mph). Biking, how dangerous, millions are probably spent each year on biking accidents that could easily be prevented if everyone just engaged in walking to get their 60 minutes a day of mandated fitness exercise (since to behave otherwise is costing us all!).

In short, in a free society, to worry or get upset about other persons behaviors that you have no right to change is a waste of time.
I wouldn't worry about it...ClydeTri
Jan 23, 2003 9:50 AM
I was discussing the litterally hundreds of millions being spent on medical research on HIV. Could it be spent much more cost effectively (dollar per life) if AIDS wasnt such a political football?
Too Narrow a view.Len J
Jan 23, 2003 9:55 AM
The money spent on HIV/AIDS research is driven by the "Worldwide" AIDS problem. Whole generations of parts of AFRICA are infected. It's estimated that AIDS will kill more people in the next 10 years than the next two causes combined.

As far as solved by behavior modification, I could say the same thing about smoking, drinking and some forms of obesity. Why single out AIDS?

Too Narrow a view.ClydeTri
Jan 23, 2003 9:59 AM
agreeing that AIDS is a huge problem in Africa, due to some very different culutural situations that we dont have here, but again, in a situation where behavior modification can effectively eliminate the disease? Why single out AIDS? Because this article purports there to be a subculture that actively wants to catch the disease, which you have to admit is rather strange. How many smokers go buy cigerrettes hoping to catch lung cancer and think that when they get lung cancer it is an "erotic" moment?
why on purpose???DougSloan
Jan 23, 2003 10:06 AM
Why would anyone get it on purpose? Some sort of "badge of honor"? Doesn't make any sense.
link is is the story...ClydeTri
Jan 23, 2003 10:16 AM
RollingStone doesnt have the four page story online, so, would have to buy the paper, but here is what is at the link:


New ROLLING STONE Managing Editor Ed Needham is set to hit complete controversy with a 4-page report: "Bug Chasers: The Men Who Secretly Long To Be HIV+."

Filed by Greg Freeman, the shock story claims some men with HIV are deliberately having unprotected sex with those who want to be infected!


"The men who want the virus are called 'bug chasers,' and the men who freely give them the virus 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," reports Freeman in the February 6, 2003 edition of ROLLING STONE.

At least twenty-five percent of all newly infected gay men fall into [bug-chasing] category, according to one claim in the "special report".

"In this world, the men with HIV are the most desired, and the bug chasers will do anything to get the virus."

Gay groups "aggressively encouraged" Freeman to drop the article.

One sad passage captures a young man in New York City who wants to be infected:

"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.'"

An infector is quoted as saying: "I'm murdering him in a sense, killing him slowly, and that's sort of, as sick as it sounds, exciting to me."

Most AIDS activists prefer to deny the problem exists to any significant extent, says Dr. Bob Cabaj, director of behavioral-health services for San Francisco County and past president of Gay and Lesbian Medical Association. "They don't want to address that this is really going on."

In a gonzo-journalism ROLLING STONE moment, Cabaj claims at least 25% of all newly infected gay men fall into [bug-chasing] category.
Seems likeSteveS
Jan 23, 2003 10:19 AM
I remember something that Randy Shilts wrote in or about "The Beat Goes On" during the outburst of homosexual experiences in San Francisco in the early 80s, that each time he or someone he knew got a new venereal disease (remember that term?), it was a badge of honor of bucking Judeo-Christian morality. Shilts, if I remember correctly, died of Aids.

Speaking of which, AIDS is an easy disease to avoid catching. There is virtually no chance of me catching it since I don't engage in the behaviours that spread it. Too bad cancer isn't that easy to avoid.
That would be my questionKristin
Jan 23, 2003 10:21 AM
I'd really have to see the study to believe it. Even then, I think I'd be skeptical.
Well from what's posted...Wayne
Jan 23, 2003 10:33 AM
since it even includes the reference for the 25% stat as the "special report", I doubt there is a study at all, much less anything that would stand up to peer review. So, I doubt 25% is at all reliable, but the fact that there is anyone in all of the US trying to catch AIDs is sad testament to their lives.
Well from what's posted...ClydeTri
Jan 23, 2003 10:38 AM
The author was on The OReilly Factor last night. I do take it is not a "scientific report" but a researched article where "25%" is an estimate. He discussed multiple people he interviewed who are both chasers and givers. He also said there are websites and chat rooms dedicated to this. I will let somebody else do the google searching for these and report back on their success. If so, if the number is anywhere near 25% of new "gay cases", this is a sad statement about a segment of the population.
makes sense in a wayColnagoFE
Jan 23, 2003 10:22 AM
assuming there is a internal conflict with the sexual orientation it might be thought of as a method of suicide--sort of like they deserve it.
What do you propose we do about it? (nm)Wayne
Jan 23, 2003 10:06 AM
Well I think...Wayne
Jan 23, 2003 10:05 AM
Len makes a good point AIDS in the US is particularly a problem of homosexuals not in most of the world. And actually I think its great that the government is spending the money on that research. The potential windfalls in knowledge gained not only on the AIDs virus but all virus' of that type, new treatment techniques that will surely not only be used to combat HIV, but many other diseases, etc. are all good in the long run.
Plus, I doubt any good cancer studies are not getting done because money has to go to HIV. More likely it's guys like me who do research on non-life and death stuff but still get their money from NIH who will miss out!
Credibility?Jon Billheimer
Jan 23, 2003 10:16 AM
I can believe that people get AIDS out of carelessness or indifference. That's congruent with most human behaviour. But I simply don't believe that people would set out to get infected on purpose. I think the article's claim is simply incredulous.
Jan 23, 2003 10:32 AM
The presumption or suggestion that a quarter of gay men infected with the virus are doing so intentionally smacks of creative figures and lies. That's preposterous.

'Sides, per our flight surgeon, quoting the latest CDC figures, the demographic with the fastest growing percentage of HIV infections is heterosexual females, 25 and younger. That's promiscuity, not conscious intent.

Bottom careful who/what you hump, gay or straight.
I'm w/ you.Sintesi
Jan 23, 2003 3:34 PM
Every gay person I've ever met has considered AIDS and HIV as tragic and horrifying. I don't think I'm so sheltered as to miss a "25%" segment of that community that supposedly valorizes the disease. That does seem kookoo doesn't it.
25% sounds a little hard to believemohair_chair
Jan 23, 2003 10:37 AM
That seems like a lot of people, so I wonder if this is the magic of statistics. Let's say there are only 4 new cases, and 1 guy says he did it on purpose, that's 25%, but hardly the huge problem it would seem.

In any case, I can easily believe that there are some men who do seek it out. I don't buy the motivations discussed in the article, however. I think that just like some heterosexuals, there are some gays who insist on leading a promiscuous lifestyle. As everyone knows by now, this increases the chance of getting HIV dramatically, especially for gay men. But, once you have it, you have it, and there's no need to worry about it anymore. It's like losing your virginity. Now the party can really begin.

If you ever read the personal ads in the San Francisco papers, which are usually quite explicit, you'll see that gays almost always list their HIV status, and HIV positive doesn't seem to be the curse we all think it is.
Urban myth. nm128
Jan 23, 2003 11:04 AM
According to a Dr. Bug Chasers do existAlpedhuez55
Jan 24, 2003 6:31 AM
I was listening to a talk show this morning. They had a Dr. on from the Fenway Community Health Center, which treats a lot of gay men in Boston. The said that "Bug Chasers" and "Gift Givers" do exist. He did question the accuracy of the 25% figure in Rolling Stone though.

THe publisher of Rolling Stone is gay. So it does not appear to be a homopkobic article. He may have inflated the numbers to try to sell magazines. It would be interesting to hear where he come up with those numbers.

Mike Y.