Today is the 26th anniversary of the first World AIDS Day. AIDS has killed more than 25 million people worldwide between 1981 and 2007. Nearly 1.2 million people are living with HIV in the U.S. and one in five of those are unaware of their infections. Knowing is everything, make an HIV test part of your routine physical.
It is not a gay disease, it is not an African disease, it is not a junkie disease, it is not a disease that is given to people who behave badly or have unacceptable lifestyles, and it is not God’s punishment. It does not discriminate, it just kills. Some of the most influential people in my life are HIV positive, or I should say most of the most influential people in my life are HIV positive.
I have been donating my time, money, and my gently-used items to Lifelong AIDS Alliance in Seattle for years. Lifelong Aids Alliance does great work for people living with HIV and other chronic illnesses. There are similar services in every community across the world, find one near you and see what type of donations (canned goods, clothing, time, money) they take and give to them the next time. Here is a link to their donation page: http://llaa.org/donatenow $54 – Provides one week of fresh meals and groceries for a person living with HIV/AIDS or other chronic illnesses.
Today, riders in Seattle can support World AIDS Day by selecting the (RED) option in the Uber app to donate $5 to the cause. In addition, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has generously pledged to match all donations made by our riders. Read more HERE.
I am who I am today because of the amazingly talented, fiercely devoted, and ridiculously hilarious guys that have influenced me to be creatively fearless, to love unapologetically, and to be true to what is important to me. Every birthday candle I blow out, every coin I throw into a fountain, every time I am required to make a wish, I wish for their health and a cure to be found.
I, along with the world, miss Anthony Perkins, Pedro Zamora, Freddie Mercury, Alvin Ailey, Rudolf Nureyev, Halston, Keith Haring, Herb Ritts, Isaac Asimov, Randy Shilts, Dorian Corey, Leigh Bowery, Robert Mapplethorpe, and many more.