Community Response


Every now and then I ask my Facebook friends what I should write about in my weekly column. This week, I was overwhelmed with suggestions. I’ll try and keep my comments short so the comments can speak for themselves since many are more a statement than a question.

John W. Dawe: That everything we know about this virus and the pandemic currently upon us is thanks to the decades of research done to prevent the spread of HIV. It’s why we now viruses work and the reason why we were able to map the current novel coronavirus in record time.

MS: More words could never be more true.  Breeders, you should be thanking the LGBT community and its activism.  

Kimberly Neff: Have you read “The Heart’s Invisible Furies”? Maybe not for this week’s column, but such a good book with LGBTQ main character growing up in Ireland in ’40s.

MS: Good idea, there are many great LGBT books and media out there — time to discover, enjoy and support.

Klayton Fennell: Pride is not a day or a parade. Or, a sign of the times…Virtual Pride.

MS: My personal favorite. Pride is what is in your heart and soul and the Pride you take in your community.  Those are the foundations of the Pride we founded in 1970.

Donna Gentile O’Donnell: LGBTQ coronavirus heroes.

MS: The first New York City ER Nurse who passed away during the early days of the pandemic.

Danielle S. Notaro: Where do you find comfort or renewal or do you grieve during the pandemic? 

MS: Staying positive, finding joy in what we have developed as a community and most importantly,  supporting each other and knowing the fight for equality will continue.

Julian Domanico: Highlight stories of LGBTQ+ people experiencing immunodeficiencies and LGBT seniors to focus on and emphasize the importance of social distancing.

MS: Think you said it for me — and you’re a living example of someone who is putting themselves out there serving our LGBT seniors.

David R. Applebaum: The arguments of Act-Up on budget priorities and choices are worthy of a) a reminder and b) an update.

MS: The HIV/AIDS activist taught the world how to organize in an epidemic. 

Michael Oneill: One that has been on my mind a lot recently, is getting older as a gay man in a community that worships youth and beauty. Having lived through the HIV/AIDS epidemic and losing so many in my age group, there are times I wonder what life would be like. Mark, we have seen so many changes good and bad, but the one thing that never changes is we all are getting older. I have one friend left from the years of ’79 thru ’92. We don’t have peers to talk about the old days, the fun we had. Even with all the death and pain, I would not change anything about my days being young and out in Philly. I just feel there is a story there that needs to be told every so often.

MS: Think you just told it, very well.

Bryan Hecksher: We should be angry and tired of the stigma! Gay men cannot donate plasma while thousands are dying!

MS: And that will continue until people give up their ignorance.

Vincent Mccutcheon: Gay parents raising children.MS:  Good luck in a lockdown!!!