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12-Dec-2019 11:51

He’s not listed on the state’s sex-offender registry list.The Shelby County Jail doesn’t keep inmates with HIV separate from other prisoners, said sheriff’s office spokesman Steve Shular. “We just do our best to know where all the inmates are.” The arrest was the latest troubling incident involving Memphis city pools this summer. Sturdevant is a project coordinator at My Brother’s Keeper, a local social-services nonprofit. After a while a young man emerged, shirtless, shrugging off sleep. Sturdevant handed him the package, shook his hand and told him to “stay out of trouble.”Sturdevant drove on another 15 minutes to pick up Marq (a shortened version of his name to protect his privacy), a teenager who was still reeling from the H. He looked up briefly when Sturdevant told him, “You’ve come a long way. In Jackson, a small city of just over 170,000, half a dozen black gay or bisexual men receive the shock of a diagnosis every month, and more than 3,600 people, the majority of them black men, live with the virus. who don’t know they have been infected, which means they are not engaged in lifesaving treatment and care — and are at risk of infecting others. as an underlying cause, with the highest death rates in Mississippi and Louisiana. Sturdevant, born and raised in Metcalfe, a tiny Mississippi Delta town of about 1,000, understands all too well the fear, stigma and isolation that can come with being a black gay man in the South. “I just don’t know how everything got so bad.”Given the advances in research, information and treatment, it seems inconceivable that someone living with the virus today, like Jordon, could look as if he had stepped out of the early years of the epidemic. Community organizations became targets of anti-gay crusades, subjected to intense scrutiny, including exhaustive audits, by federal agencies. Most scientists now believe that risk of contracting H. But if you are in a community, like Jackson, where a high percentage of gay and bisexual men are infected with H. This explanation of “viral load” helps dispel the stubbornly held notion that gay and bisexual black men have more sex than other men, a false perception embedded in the American sexual imagination and fueled by stereotypes of black men as hypersexual Mandingos dating back to slavery.“Black men are not just out here having unprotected sex willy-nilly; the science disproves that,” said Terrance Moore, deputy executive director of the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors in Washington. Sturdevant banged on the door of a small house, its yard overgrown with weeds; he knew not to leave the package on the doorstep, where it could be stolen. The teenager slumped in the back seat, half listening, half checking his texts. V.-related death rate was seven times as high as that of the United States population at large. Everybody knows everybody else in Jackson’s small, tight-knit black gay community, and most men will find their sexual partners in this network. boils down to a numbers game rather than a blame game: If the virus is not present in your sexual network, you can have unprotected sex and not get infected. — and many don’t know it and go untreated — any unprotected sexual encounter becomes a potential time bomb.

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The media reports were based on a Memphis Police Department press release (below).

Two teens drowned May31 on the first day pools were open for the season, one of them at the Westwood pool. When they reopened, the city required pool users to carry ID cards and anyone who wanted to go into deep water had to pass a swimming test.

Reginald Sanders, 30, appeared Monday in Jackson City Court charged with criminal exposure to HIV.

In fact, over the past several years, public-health officials have championed the idea that an AIDS-free generation could be within reach — even without a vaccine. To offer more perspective: Swaziland, a tiny African nation, has the world’s highest rate of H. The crisis is most acute in Southern states, which hold 37 percent of the country’s population and as of 2014 accounted for 54 percent of all new H. Sturdevant has two daughters from an early marriage and three grandchildren, but he says he feels just as strongly about his 16 or so unrelated “children,” most of them living with H. “Young black men feel abandoned and need someone they can believe in and who believes in them,” Sturdevant said as he drove past fields of fluffy cotton, his hands resting lightly on the steering wheel. “I’ve had everything — diarrhea, hemorrhoids, now this neuropathy,” he said. and to avoid the small-town gaze at the local facilities; there is no Gay Men’s Health Crisis for him to visit in his small town, as there would be if he lived in New York. “At the hospital, they know my mom and my brother and my grandmother. Gottlieb said he is often asked why he didn’t include in that first report the documented case of the gay African-American man, who had both PCP and cytomegalovirus, a virus that attacks the organs of patients with compromised immune systems. “But we just couldn’t get the administration to focus on a domestic plan.”Greg Millett, a senior scientist for the C. “During the Bush years, the administration dropped all pretense that they cared about AIDS in this country,” said Millett, who is now the vice president and director of public policy at amf AR, the Foundation for AIDS Research. All the major black publications collaborated in a highly visible campaign to spotlight the disease as a major health crisis. testing — and the number of congregations participating in the Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS ballooned to more than 10,000. The lack of research to create a coherent explanation was further confounded by a reluctance on the part of some scientists and activists to perpetuate the dangerous myth of black women as sexually promiscuous — another holdover from slavery. in high numbers, provided a “bridge to infection” to black heterosexual women, a phrase I first heard from researchers at a medical conference. In my reporting for both The Times and Essence, I found no shortage of anecdotal accounts of H. V.-positive women who were infected by male partners who had been having sex with other men in secret. This idea made a certain amount of sense in the frustrating absence of scientific data. Keith Boykin, a former Clinton White House aide, became so incensed by the down-low hysteria that he wrote a 2005 best-selling book, “Beyond the Down Low: Sex, Lies and Denial in Black America.” “Because the whole down-low story was doing a disservice to the black gay community and creating a racially troubling narrative that black men who have sex with men were villains, I felt I had to step in and correct the record,” said Boykin, a CNN commentator who teaches at Columbia University’s Institute for Research in African-American Studies. and black gay and bisexual men, wrote a heartfelt open letter to the talk-show host. “Hold hands and bow your heads — and take off that hat,” he said to Tommy Brown, who had rushed in from his job at Popeyes.

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But in certain pockets of the country, unknown to most Americans, H. “I told God I want to be able to help guys like me, that didn’t grow up with their father, and they started coming to me, wanting to talk. Then he turned down a dead-end street and pulled up in front of the one-story brick home where Jordon lived. “My body hates me.” Once a month, his mother or grandmother drove him to medical appointments in Jackson, to receive care from providers experienced in treating people living with H. I would rather be around people who don’t know me.” Too ashamed to admit that he had the virus, Jordon had told few friends about his diagnosis.“Are you taking your medicine? He explains that he discovered the case after the report was finalized. community that would rise up to demand government action. Black churches created AIDS ministries and offered H. During the 2004 election, the PBS journalist Gwen Ifill brought the issue to the mainstream stage as the moderator for the vice-presidential debate. P., who famously announced, “Now is the time for us to face the fact that AIDS has become a black disease.”Most of the lock-step mobilization efforts focused on preventing the disease in black women, who, for the most part, were contracting the virus through sex with male partners. Given the confusion, it was simplest to latch onto the most provocative idea: that black gay men, who we knew were also contracting H. As the theory went, closeted black gay men were using women as unsuspecting “cover girls” to hide their sexuality and then infecting them with H. As a black lesbian myself, I understood the stigma, shame and fear that could drive black gay men to create seemingly straight lives while sleeping with men — and end up unwittingly infecting their female partners with H. “I think the near-decade-long obsession with the down low diverted our attention into what was really a side issue.”In 2010, after Oprah Winfrey ran her second show about the down low, again featuring King, Dr. Malebranche, a black physician and one of the country’s foremost experts on H. “We are not all self-loathing, secretive, unprotected-sex-having, disease-ridden liars,” Malebranche wrote. outreach and education that proved successful to black women never translated to black gay men — and the excessive focus on the down low sucked away critical time, energy and resources. The willowy young man snatched off his baseball cap, embroidered with the fast-food chain’s red-and-orange logo, and lowered his head.

“They met on an online dating site called Badoo,” Jackson City Court Judge Blake Anderson read from an affidavit.



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