Written by Cheryl Contee, Jack & Jill Politics
We as a people are truly greater than a thing like AIDS. Unfortunately, we have been harder as a community than other groups. Why? Nobody seems sure. What’s the sitch? The CDC sez:
- African Americans are the racial/ethnic group most affected by HIV.
- In 2009, African Americans comprised 14% of the US population but accounted for 44% of all new HIV infections.
- Young African American gay and bisexual men are especially at risk of HIV infection.
There remains a stigma to the disease that prevents people from simply checking their status and getting the treatment that can save lives. These days, you can live a pretty long healthy life if you have the drugs you need AND you can reduce transmission to others by 96% if you’re on medication. Look at Magic Johnson — a brother’s still smiling and staying strong. This is too important – we’ve got to talk about it, know about it and preach it to those we care about.
Today is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Check out the video above and share it with people you care about on this important day. Together, we can be Greater Than AIDS. For more information go to greaterthan.org
More than 60 Black celebrities are joining the Greater Than AIDS campaign to shine a spotlight on the high rates of HIV infection in the Black community on Feb. 7, National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. The vid features all these folks:
1. Laila Ali, professional athlete
2. Essence Atkins, actor (ARE WE THERE YET/TBS)
3. Alimi Ballard, actor (NCIS/CBS, NUMB3RS/CBS)
4. Yvette Nicole Brown, actor, (COMMUNITY/NBC)
5. Bill Duke, actor/director
6. Nadine Ellis, actor (LET’S STAY TOGETHER/BET)
7. Jason George, actor (GREY’S ANATOMY/ABC, OFF THE MAP/ABC)
8. Dennis Haysbert, actor (24/FOX, THE UNIT/CBS)
9. Samuel L Jackson, actor, producer (PULP FICTION)
10. Orlando Jones, actor/comedian (MAD TV/Fox, THE EVIDENCE/ABC)
11. MC Lyte, musical artist
12. Dr. Lisa Masterson, MD, host, The Doctors (CBS TV Distribution)
13. Shaun Robinson, Access Hollywood
14. J Rome, musical artist
15. Jussie Smollett, actor (THE SKINNY)
16. Tamara Taylor, actor (BONES/Fox)
17. Brian White, actor (MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE/TNT, GOOD DEEDS)
18. Michael Jai White, actor (TYLER PERRY’S FOR BETTER OR WORSE/TBS)
19. Jesse Williams, actor (GREY’S ANATOMY/ABC)
20. Vanessa Williams, actor, director (SOUL FOOD/Showtime, MELROSE PLACE/Fox)
Personally speaking, I thank them for taking to time to speak out on this. If Black Americans account for nearly half of all new HIV infections each year, yet make up just 14 percent of the population, then something is definitely wrong. It’s time to unite and bring this disproportionate epidemic to an end. Now it’s your turn: let’s give HIV & AIDS the one-two punch. Together, we’ve come so far. We can do this, y’all!
This post was originally published by Jack & Jill Politics.
Photo: screenshot from above Youtube video