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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Sexual Ethics and Politics » bug-chasing and gift-giving

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Author Topic: bug-chasing and gift-giving
Scarleteen Volunteer
Member # 226

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Well, Rolling Stone's current issue has a report on 'bug-chasing' which is disturbing to say the least.

Basically, bug-chasing refers to people who want to contract HIV/AIDS. Gift-giving of course is the reverse - people are already HIV positive, but are willing to sleep with HIV negative people who want the disease. Everything in the limited research that I did about these phenomena makes them out to be consensual - everyone involved seems to know what they're getting into.

Now, a doctor in the RS article apparently claims that at least one-quarter of new HIV cases among gay men are a result of this stuff. However, it should be noted that the same doctor claims he was misquoted.

Is all of this irresponsible? Should it be stopped? Can it be stopped?

Gut reactions, anyone?

"And when I'm gone, she'll never leave me. No, no she'll never, be untrue. And buddy if you do not believe me, you don't believe the sky is blue."
-Joel Plaskett, Down at the Khyber

[This message has been edited by Dzuunmod (edited 01-24-2003).]

Posts: 1515 | From: Montreal, Quebec, Canada | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Executive Director & Founder
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Just a little FYI on this: there is NO study to verify that 25% statistic on this.

This quasi-phenomenon has been around for a bit, just not talked about, but I would be VERY doubtful we're even talking about a fraction of those numbers.

But for those that do exist? I think you're likely looking at a few possible motivators:

1) Serious (the worst kind of) edge-play.
2) Clearly destructive behaviour, and
3) Perhaps most worrisome, the viewpoint that is sadly sometimes valid that it is easier for HIV-positive gay men to get community and cultural support than it is for those who are gay without the virus.

Heather Corinna
Editor and Founder, Scarleteen

My epitaph should read: "She worked herself into this ground."
-- Kay Bailey Hutchinson

Posts: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Scarleteen Volunteer
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A piece in the Washington Times refuting the claim:

Laurel Lemming
Scarleteen Advocate

"Maypole/The ties that bind you will unwind/To free me one day/And everything decays..." - XTC, "The Wheel and the Maypole"

[This message has been edited by lemming (edited 01-24-2003).]

Posts: 3156 | From: Austin, Texas | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Scarleteen Volunteer
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Another commentary:

Personally, my concern is that focusing on phenomena such as this (where all the evidence seems to suggest that very, very few people are actually involved) takes attention away from much larger issues such as the widespread perception that unprotected sex is somehow better or "more intimate", or that practising safer sex is about "not trusting" your partner.

What seems clear is that there are huge numbers of people (straight and gay) who aren't deliberately seeking to contract HIV (or anything else), but who are putting themselves at risk by romanticising unsafe sex.

Posts: 6944 | From: UK | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator

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