The U.S. Centers for Disease Control issued some of its first reports recently on HIV for the year 2009. That’s two years ago, but there's always a lag time in the CDC reports.
The picture is still not improving regarding homosexual behavior in males.The latest figures show male homosexual sex accounts for ongoing high numbers of HIV cases. It’s also the cause of a rising percentage of HIV incidence in the U.S.
The statistics are reported by giving different breakdowns of the totals according to various factors. One of those is what is called “transmission mode.” It's how the patient apparently contracted the disease, a disclosure made as the medical history is taken.
In spite of what you may have heard, male homosexual sex has consistently been the single biggest “transmission mode” for HIV in the U.S. So, HIV attributed to male-to-male sexual contact rose from 50% of all the HIV cases in 2006 to 56% in 2009. An additional 3% is attributed to male homosexual behavior along with injection drug use.
And the total numbers are significant. There were over 42,000 total HIV infections diagnosed in 2009 among adults and adolescents and over 25,000 of these are related to male homosexual sex.
Way too many of these cases occur among younger-aged men, those 24 and under. This trend has been rising in recent years, which is one more reason not to push homosexuality at school, or in any way to imply these practices can be done “safely.”
After homosexuals, the next highest transmission mode is through heterosexual sex, accounting for around a third of cases, a figure that has remained stable over recent years. These are people who contracted the disease through sexual contact with someone who was previously exposed through sex with someone in one of the other risk categories: males who have sex with males ("MSM") or an injection drug user.
Injection drug users account for around ten percent of HIV cases. There is also a very small percentage of those who contract HIV as children through maternal contact, or who have hemophilia, or who were exposed through a bad transfusion.
In short, analyzing and tracking this epidemic brings us face to face with, for the most part, a lot of misbehavior in our culture. What we see predominantly is unmarried, promiscuous sexual activity as well as drug use, none of which should be taking place.
This is the statistical face of deviance, out-of-control lust, and desperation. Most of the campaigns in this country to prevent HIV/AIDS do not take a strong stand against these unnecessary behaviors, but instead, talk around them and try to teach people to manage their misbehavior better. The numbers tell the story: it's not working.
What is that old definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. We are throwing away hundreds of millions of dollars in HIV prevention that ignores the elephant in the room, or maybe throws him an occasional peanut.
If your son or daughter is learning standard sex education at school, chances are excellent that he or she has absorbed this idea: that HIV is “everyone’s disease” and that just about anyone can get it. It’s simply not true. If you wait until marriage for sex— the traditional, authentic kind with one man and one woman— and remain faithful in marriage, your chances for HIV in your lifetime will be virtually zero.
It's the specific high risk practices popular among homosexuals, hook-up heterosexuals, and drug users, that put them at high risk. They simply don't need to happen, for many reasons. This is not that tough to figure out.
We need to be telling the truth to our young people, within the public health community and in our schools.
Notes: 1. Centers for Disease Control Slide Set HIV/AIDS