National HIV Testing Day is next Thursday, June 27, and there is no better time to praise the many HIV negative gay men who are making smart decisions to remain that way. Hooray, HIV negative gay men!
Let's show some love for our negative brothers, who's with me?
Oh, Lord. Now I've done it. By showing support for negative guys, I am clearly demeaning HIV positive men.
But wait! I'm HIV positive myself. So, that must mean I'm being sarcastic in my support of negative guys, because there's so little room for sincerity and goodwill in the chasm between HIV positive and negative gay men. That space is already so crowded, what with all the stigma and simmering resentments.
Some days I just want to go back to bed.
When I produced the quick video below three years ago, my intent was to celebrate the accomplishment of any gay man who is sexually active and has managed to remain HIV negative. It was produced by myself and my gay, HIV negative older brother to spread a little love across the viral divide. That was it. No other agenda.
While initial reactions to the posting were quite good from both HIV positive and negative people, the pendulum swung quickly. Comments began to label my overly theatrical style (ouch!) as sarcastic. Some found the message demeaning to positive people. Some found the message demeaning to negative people.
My goodwill became shrouded in a fog of distrust and what-about-me?-ism.