But as a tax payer who’s worked all his life, and somebody who’s paid high health care premiums even though l’m as healthy as a horse, I’ve earned the right to bitch when it comes to who’s picking up the tab for guys getting HIV meds who can’t pay for them on their own. I’m not talking about the 45+ category from my generation who didn’t know what was ahead after the Sodom and Gomorrah 70’s. No, the ones I’m pissed at are the twenty somethings, thirty somethings and even some early forty something guys who should have fucken known better (unless they got tricked by a philandering partner or got gang raped against their will).
Just like everything else in our society is getting more expensive (is a gallon of milk four bucks where you live yet?), the price of HIV drugs are going up too. Depending what you’re taking, an average regimen can cost anywhere from five hundred to over a thousand a month. The same holds true for that pre-exposure – pre-fuck – prophylaxis like Truvada which some HIV-infected men take as part of their treatment.
Oh, our gay media will tell you, no problem, after all the insurance companies and the gov like Medicaid or Ryan White will pick up the tab, but let’s cut the shit. All this money wasn’t printed on some computer. Somebody’s got to cough it up and that means either those of us who pay taxes or those of us who pay health care premiums if the individual can’t afford it himself and most, I’m sure, can’t. There’s no free ride. And stats say there are 50,000 new cases annually, again the majority because of unsafe sex.
Let’s take the case of Aaron Darr, now 23, who came out at 13 and contracted HIV as a junior in high school. High school! Today’s he’s lauded by the politically correct gay media as a self- avowed “warrior for the middle class” political activist pressing the need for educating the young to protect themselves when having sex. Give me a break! I honestly can’t believe in this Techno Age a kid as he did growing up in Ohio, yes even Ohio, NEVER heard of AIDS in 2005 no matter what out-of-touch educational curriculum is being taught there ( can they be that backward??) He’s, of course on meds, and being a struggling young actor in NYC who do you think is picking up his tab?
Or how about the guy in another story I read who went poz ten years ago at 26 because of irresponsible behavior who because he works a schlock job and lives near the poverty line here in South Florida – so he can’t even pay for it himself as some gay men do – has his treatment underwritten by Ryan White – tax payer funded Ryan White.
As a gay man who’s lived here in breezy, easy Lauderdale, I can tell you this guy’s case is far from unique. South Florida is a magnet for flickers (the grass is always greener someplace else) and floaters, (no real job experience, no money, just a meth habit) guys, young and old, who come down and work the system. I know because I’ve tricked with more of their kind than I’d like to admit. They’re pretty, but pretty like a Hollywood set, rotting from behind.
And remember, assuming lone term survival, these guys, guys like Aaron Darr, may be on the dole for the next FORTY years.
As if this weren’t bad enough, mega-pharms like Pfizer are now looking to weasel out of paying taxes on their mega-profits in the US by attempting to merge with British based companies (Pfizer wants to buy AstraZeneca) which would allow them to set up corporate shells overseas where tax rates are lower.
So we’re paying for other guys’ mistakes and the pharms who are reaping the profits may end up paying shit.
Ain’t that wonderful?
Now tell me I’m being heartless and non-inclusive, go ‘head and tell me.
OK, smart-ass, you’re saying, so what are you gonna do about?
Well, for starters, our gay media which rakes in a lot of revenue from HIV med ads with those smiling twenty something poz boys, and all the AIDS organizations, as noble as some of them may be, which also have a vested interest, should call a spade a spade. Guys under 40 who just got infected aren’t innocent victims, they’re irresponsible jerks and promotion and editorial copy should say that. The Health Department should be monitoring sex clubs and bath houses for public unprotected sex (I know you can’t do much with shit going on behind closed doors) and ads, underwritten by the pharms, should be showing the ravages of AIDS on guys who have been on the meds for ten or twenty years to convince the young boys it ain’t just about popping a pill. Even bareback sites should be closed down and no guy should be allowed to say in his hook-up site profile he “bb’s.” After, at the height of the AIDS crisis, San Francisco closed its baths and they have never reopened.
It’s time our “community” whatever the fuck that is, starts discouraging bad behavior in an aggressive not limp-wrist fashion. Otherwise, this charade will continue for another fifty years. Which it probably will since, like most people’s misery, there’s $$$ to be made by somebody, baby.
And after all, when you’re in heat, who thinks?