Masks Are The New Condoms

Photo: Public Domain Pictures

During the last four months of this pandemic I’ve been doing a daily livestream on Facebook. Every day I say the same thing: “We’re going to get through this, and we’ll be here with you everyday for the duration.”  Now, I have no intention of doing a livestream seven days a week forever, so I really do believe there will be an end to the danger. Here’s why. 

As this virus’s grip gets tighter, people ask me how I can be so positive about an end.  Might sound crazy, but it’s an easy answer: we’ve been here before. But when our community was here, we were alone. Today, with COVID-19, every mother, father, sister, brother, uncle, aunt and cousin wants a way out. When we were scared of the virus eating it’s way through the LGBTQ community, those people just turned their heads. Today it’s their family, friends and co-workers at risk. It’s them at risk. Everyone in this country is frightened as we were when Covid’s little brother, AIDS, first hit our community in the ‘80s.

Back then, since we were alone in our battle, we had one scientist here, one researcher there, and maybe a tiny bit of funding over there. Today every scientist, researcher and funder is on the hunt. Everything imaginable is being tossed at it. During the AIDS crisis, we had to create a whole medical community services system to save our community.  Today, the government and big pharma are doing that, though it’s debatable how well they are doing it.

For thirty years we’ve known most of the issues that the rest of the world is just now becoming acquainted with. Remember these terms: contact tracing, T-cell count, be safe, double blind studies, compassionate use of untested drugs. 

It all boils down to this.  Put enough experts on an issue and they’ll eventually solve it or find a way to live with it.  Until they do, just like AIDS, there is only one answer: stay as educated as you can, know your options for testing, and stay safe. Masks are the new condoms.

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