Aundaray Guess: The Grey Invisibles of HIV

When HIV statistics are branded about, a large focus is placed on the young gay community, and justifiably so. But gay seniors are facing the same crisis:

  • According to the CDC, there has been a steady increase in HIV infections in Americans 65 years and older.
  • Annually, about 10-11% of newly diagnosed U.S. HIV cases occur among older adults.
  • That comes out to about 5,000-6,000 new cases of HIV in this age group every single year.

(images: HIV/AIDS Prevention Campaigns for Seniors and Older Adults on the Streets of NYC, Global Action on Aging)

Gay Shamelessness, Beyond the Crystal Meth Crisis

Thom Gunn, the greatest gay poet since Whitman, was one of thousands of urban gay men who fell victim to crystal methamphetamine in 2004. They were a minority only, but the drug’s Leviathon-like addictiveness could swallow a man whole.

Every few weeks brought news or rumors of someone else who “fell down the meth hole”—an exemplary longtime AIDS survivor, a famous AIDS doctor, the most-lusted-after young man in the old days of ACT UP. The gay leadership spoke of meth as “a second epidemic.”

Study: Pressure to “Man Up” Raises HIV Risk for Black MSMThe perfect storm of repression and distress over conforming to hyper-masculine identities in the black community seems to fuel higher rates of condomless sex among gay and bisexual men of color, and also significantly lowers a man’s likelihood of engaging in monogamous relationships. Here’s why.

Study: Pressure to “Man Up” Raises HIV Risk for Black MSM

The perfect storm of repression and distress over conforming to hyper-masculine identities in the black community seems to fuel higher rates of condomless sex among gay and bisexual men of color, and also significantly lowers a man’s likelihood of engaging in monogamous relationships. Here’s why.

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The recent release of the much-anticipated film “The Normal Heart,” which follows a gay activist trying to raise awareness in the early years of the AIDS crisis, has sparked a renewed conversation about the disease and what exactly went wrong in the early days of the epidemic.

Phill Wilson, president of the Black AIDS Institute, spoke with HuffPost Live’s Josh Zepps about what was going on in New York City during the outbreak of AIDS. He said that not only did gay men in New York not matter at the time, but this same marginalization still applies today.

"Today, the most at-risk population for HIV are young, black, gay men," Wilson said. "And they are at risk at part because it’s yet another population that just doesn’t matter and it seems, in some ways, we’ve not learned lessons [and instead] we’ve just changed the population that doesn’t matter."

The fight against AIDS is not a thing of the past, but the tools to end the epidemic are available, Wilson said, and the question is whether there is the will and desire to take the steps to actually do so.

Where is he now? Greg Louganis, March 1999 CoverWhen POZ caught up with Olympic diving legend Greg Louganis at his Malibu home in 1999, it was 11 years after he shockingly slammed his head on the diving board at the 1988 Olympics and five years after he released Breaking the Surface, his bestselling memoir in which he came out as both gay and as HIV positive.

Where is he now? Greg Louganis, March 1999 Cover

When POZ caught up with Olympic diving legend Greg Louganis at his Malibu home in 1999, it was 11 years after he shockingly slammed his head on the diving board at the 1988 Olympics and five years after he released Breaking the Surface, his bestselling memoir in which he came out as both gay and as HIV positive.