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Archive for December 1st, 2008

Wear YOUR Red Ribbon

Wear YOUR Red Ribbon

Red ribbons abound in BlogLand today, and well they should. It’s World AIDS Day, which simply begs attention … and deserves every word written, every thought thunk, and every effort made on behalf of the millions of people who live with, and have died from, this miserable, rotten disease.

I’m from California, as longtime readers know, and one thing we Californians have experienced is the devastation AIDS has brought to families, friends, communities … the love lost, the hearts broken, the bonds torn.

I don’t know anyone from home who hasn’t been personally touched by this disease. Not one.

I lost a cousin and dozens of dear, dear friends over the years, and to this day not only miss all, I still have with me … although halfway around the world … my darling Robbie, who has been living with AIDS for 26 years.

Robbie is one of my oldest friends. We worked together at a zoo in California where we both loved the same chimps and orang utans, and where we did almost everything together.

After his partner of 17 years died of the disease, he moved in across the street from me, and every night we would watch movies and talk and eat and have a beer or two, and every Sunday during football season we would hang out on his bed and watch every game we could. (He’s a big Dallas fan … I was hot for the 49ers)

I did my first AIDS Day march with him, then every year after, and he was sitting next to me the first time I saw “Philadelphia” … made me wonder if when I went to see Syble if I shouldn’t have done that with someone with a multiple personality.

Through my work writing in the adoption world, I have had the good fortune of knowing families who have adopted HIV+ children, intentionally, and since the disease in Western nations no longer conveys an immediate death sentence have had the wonderful experience of adding these little wonders to their lives.

AIDS. Learn about it. Do something about it. Support efforts to do what can be done to rid the world of this illness. Speak up when issues come up. Encourage those you bring into office to take on the challenges and support research, education and treatment programs.

Here are some links to follow for more info on how to be proactive in this fight:

AIDS.GOV blog

The Respect Project

The myspace site Drug+HIV … learn the link

Metro Teen Aids

HIV/AIDS Awareness Days

Children With AIDS Project

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