Author: M. G.
In 1983 the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration decided to ban gay people on being blood donors as a response to the outbreak of the AIDS plague. The medical knowledge about the virus and the syndrome was extremely poor, there was not even a name for HIV and AIDS, so FDA's decision could have made sense at the time.
What does sound just foolish is that this policy is still active after 30 years. On June 19 the American Medical Association voted to oppose this ban, since it must be considered an outdated - as well as discriminatory - measure. Men who have sex with men (MSM) should be evaluated on an individual level rather than being lumped together in a high-risk category. Moreover, HIV and AIDS testing has become standard practice in blood donations to minimize any risk to recipients. On the other hand, since statistics prove that new HIV infections are still mostly within the MSM community, an easy solution is still far to come.
What to do then? I will obviously leave the decision and responsibilities to doctors and experts, but from my - and DAA's - point of view the SAFE SEX FACTOR is crucial. An effective way to fight this condition of gay stigmatization is just to prove the statistics wrong. How? We have our rubber weapon and it is enough to change the numbers. The rest is just up to us.