The medical community started noticing patterns Of a strange and deadly disease which significantly grew with the gay community in San Francisco. Not knowing where it originated, the causes and all its effects, except for some common symptoms, and the fact it has a 100% mortality rate, they started on the quest to beat this disease before it kills more. But with limited funding, the CDC (Center for Disease Control) found it difficult to undergo a swift investigation for prevention and early detection.
It also took them a while to give a proper name to this disease that even after hundreds already died, it was only named “Gay Cancer” or “Gay Pneumonia” which gave t all the more reason to be shun by the federal government. Unfortunately, this came in the time when the stigma for gays and homosexuality is so rampant, that they were barely even recognized as a significant minority of the society. Add that to the bureaucracy and a government that doesn’t seem to care, AIDS was consequently allowed to spread unchecked during the ass’s, while the most trusted institutions denied or ignored its threat.
Due to the limited knowledge and resources to determine the origins of AIDS during that time, the gay community widespread panic did not stop the promiscuity of a number of them. Even then, the gay community were divided on the nature of the disease but also wants a solution. Today, awareness and acceptance is widespread, but still not entirely foolproof, just like in the ass’s. It is now not merely a speculation that AIDS is a blood-born disease contracted through blood and other body fluids. It is a virus that is no longer isolated among the gay population.
Unfortunately, despite the continuous campaigns and efforts by the government and non-government institutions across the world, AIDS still spreads when little to no caution or abstinence is taken into consideration. Take a look at the case of the Philippines, as the numbers are on the rise from 2,200 HIVE cases in 2001 to 8,300 in 2007. In 2009, the number of reported HIVE positive cases rose to 3,91 1 , where 21% are already full blown AIDS. Like in the movie, I agree that to help prevent AIDS, people should be careful, abstain or use precautionary actions to prevent this disease from spreading.
But what do not agree on is how the spread of AIDS and HIVE are still being labeled and stereotyped to this day. In the case of the Philippines, it is a shame that our very own “society still tends to outcast the Filipino HIVE/AIDS airier when their counterparts in the West are treated normally. Here, patients experience isolation from their own families, peers and eventually, their community. ” 3 1 personally had a colleague before that had acquired this disease unknowingly, and due to this “shame” that she carries, she hid under the declaration that her sickness was cancer.
She was forced to resign the moment that rumors spread and reached top management, for fear that others might get infected. This even happened during the peak of the news where a rise in HIVE cases was observed in the BOP industry. 4 Because of this shame”, to this day, nobody has heard from her. AIDS is a disease that is carried through the bloodstream, in our society the stigma that goes with this is carried to the social structure that binds the nation.
To help prevent its spread, we have to get ourselves informed and we have to act with the knowledge that we carry. We have to be grateful to films such as “And the Band Played On” that this spread awareness to every society worldwide. But believe that we must all work together to fight this disease by abolishing its stigma. By abolishing its stigma, discrimination and territories, the awareness is spread throughout the whole society and knowledge for prevention is properly spread.