First, A Little History
"In 1974 there were approximately three million cases of gonorrhea and one hundred thousand cases of infectious syphilis in North America. .-.-.-The situation has reached a critical point and requires immediate action, for VD is not only an unpleasant hindrance to the free expression of human sexuality, it is also a significant drain on the health of North Americans. .-.-.-We must immediately initiate mass education programs to attack the ignorance and confusion surrounding venereal diseases. All men and women have the human right and responsibility to have scientific knowledge about their bodies, their sexuality and the diseases related to sexual intercourse. We cannot rely on government health services to conduct such mass education programs, for they are crippled both by a lack of confidence in the public's ability to understand the scientific information and by an incredibly antiquated moralistic attitude."
So you see, not much has changed before or after AIDS. Further, their demands are not that much different than our demands today:
"With knowledge of the technical and social aspects of venereal disease, the people will be in a position to effectively demand that private doctors, hospitals and public health VD clinics provide high quality medical care for all men and women who have VD. No longer will we accept incompetent, uninterested doctors. No longer will we accept the endless waiting, the hurried examinations and the insulting questions that are so common to VD clinics. We want decent, thorough, expert, gentle medical care. This is our right as human beings and we must learn enough about our bodies, and about medicine, so that we can intelligently insist on receiving nothing less."
Source: The VD Handbook: Medicine for the People, Third Edition; April 1977; Donna Cherniak and Allan Feingold; Montreal Health Press Inc.
AIDS and Other Women's Issues
WORLD (Women Organized to Respond to Life-Threatening Diseases)
January 1998: ".-.-.-Our communities need to be saturated with education, education, education." May 1997: "When you work with and for people with AIDS, or you try to change a system that accuses, judges, and locks them away in corners, you cry a lot.-.-.-."
Subscriptions: Free with suggested donations of $15 or more. A monthly publication by and for women.
414 13th Street, 2nd floor
Oakland, CA 94612
WORLD is highly recommended for information that is understandable, useful, and relevant to the lives of women with HIV/AIDS.
Positively Aware: The Journal of Test Positive Aware Network
May/June 2001: "Separate But Equal," as always TPAN has produced an excellent issue. This one centers on what all women with HIV need and want. Focused on our commonalities instead of our differences.
January/February 1995: "In light of federal officials inability to come up with a broad, long-term solution to the United States healthcare crisis, people living with HIV are no closer to-.-.-. accessible quality healthcare" than in 1977 when STDs were VD.
Women Alive recommends Positively Aware for an excellent source of treatment information, with news briefs, medication charts, nutrition information and women specific articles in every issue.
Subscriptions: Free to people with HIV/AIDS. Suggested donation for all others is $25 and up.
1258 W. Belmont Ave.
Chicago, IL 60657-3292
Great magazine! June/July 2001: "20 years into the pandemic: What lies ahead? Judith Currier and Kathie Grovit-Ferbas are leading vaccine research to an all-new level."
This publication dares to address issues of drug interactions with antivirals and "recreational" substances. The latest issue, "Up In Smoke" details the medicinal marijuana dilemma in the United States while echoing the call for global attention to the AIDS pandemic, encompassing Africa, Brazil, and Asia.
6922 Hollywood Boulevard, Suite 1000
Los Angeles, CA 90028-6148
For the Politically Inclined
Women and Revolution: Journal of the Women's Commission of the Spartacist League
Spring 1995, on the cover: "Dhaka, April 1994 -- Two thousand demonstrate against fundamentalists attempts to shut down foreign agencies supporting clinics and schools for girls." On page 27: "AIDS victims are at the mercy of insurance companies, hospitals, employers and the capitalist governments that neither want to pay the bills nor provide the desperately needed medical care. The intersection of sex and disease has unleashed a barrage of hatred, prejudice and ostracism against people with AIDS. All resources of society should be mobilized to combat the spread of AIDS, to ensure the humane care of the sick and to find a cure. But the-.-.-. capitalist class-.-.-. will not fight AIDS effectively, because their irrational social system is based on sexism, homophobia and backward prejudices."
Subscriptions: $10 subscription cost.
Spartacist Publishing Co.
Box 1377 GPO
New York, NY 10116
621 North San Vicente Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Published twice monthly by John S. James.
1233 Locust St., 5th flr
Philadelphia, PA 19107