If you read the countless tweets and articles produced by the gay (ill)health sector you would be forgiven for thinking that HIV and STIs can be avoided, or driven down, by testing for them every 3 months or so. Syphilis and gonorrhea are at epidemic levels, last seen in the 1940s before antibiotics were discovered to treat infections. You would think the importance of wearing a condom would be the message sent out to the gay community.
Yet the gay (ill)health sector’s answer to the epidemic is test, test, test. They emphasise the importance of testing so if infected you get treated and stop onward transmission. At no point do they state “the importance of wearing a condom” which would prevent you getting infected in the first place. Incredibly condoms simply aren’t mentioned!
We have come to the conclusion here at GMAP that individual responsibility (wearing a condom) has been replaced by a bizarre reliance on state intervention. That it is the duty of the NHS to continually treat you for sexually transmitted infections which could be easily avoided through wearing a condom.
The ideology from the gay (ill)health (un)professionals is that it is homophobic to deny gay men the sexual liberation of “condomless” sex. And that sexual health equality in society with straight people is sexual freedom in the form of unprotected sex for all. Just test test test being the responsible thing to do.
Don’t forget you cannot be “judgemental” about gay men who desire bareback sex, because straight people do it all the time. You cannot therefore call someone a “bad gay” for wanting unprotected sex.
This is the wrong message to send out during a gay sexual health crisis. A crisis the sector has created due to their crackpot “toolbox” strategy and bareback friendly advice.
Suggesting the importance of wearing a condom seems to be some kind of blasphemy for some within the gay health sector. Homophobic even, because it denies us the pleasure, intimacy and fulfilment we justly deserve. Therefore don’t mention them, as it doesn’t fit the ideology. For them it’s an inconvenient truth that condoms DO an excellent job at driving down STI infections. In the 1990s condom campaigns were successful in preventing HIV infection and also had the by product of reducing other STI infections.
These HIV+ gay men who lead on gay mens health, who publicly state they never want to wear a condom again, and that doing so is a compromise to the sex they want, are selling gay men’s sexual health short.
Do not fall for their bareback agenda, ideology and condom stigma. Condoms are a very effective tool for your sexual health, well being and a visible sign of an educated gay man in control of his sex life. Condoms DO stop anxiety around gay sex and DO work.
Saying you wear a condom and doing so means you avoid the bareback cesspool which is full of the car crash gays and disease central. The wrong sick and disordered, who are deluded that unprotected sex is some kind of liberation. When it clearly isn’t.