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Black men infecting their women

Kwaku Person-Lynn | , Ph.D. | 4/2/2009, 5 p.m.

Women of Afrikan descent have become the highest infected population of HIV/AIDS nationally.

When it was discovered that men of Afrikan descent were serious offenders, this made the situation incredulous. Many women aware of the "down low" syndrome and are extremely angry that their men would be so careless about spreading such a dangerous killing disease.

There are various elements that have led to this terrifying discovery. The classic study (HIV Risk Behaviors Among African American Men in Los Angeles County Who Self-Identify as Heterosexual, conducted by medical professionals: Amy Rock Wohl, Denise F. Johnson, Sharon Lu, Wilbert Jordan, Gildon Beall, Judith Currier, and Paul A. Simon 2002) have released alarming findings. The study states "These data suggest that men who have sex with men and self-identify as heterosexual are at high risk for acquiring HIV to their female sexual partners."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that "From 1994 through 2000, 27 percent of new HIV infections in the United States were acquired through heterosexual contact. The biggest growth was among black women, who accounted for about 50 percent of all cases of HIV infection acquired heterosexually."

To find out that many men of Afrikan descent are transmitting this disease to their women is one thing, but to find out how some of them are doing it is just downright disgusting. What one does and whom they do it with behind closed doors is one's own business. When it jeopardizes the health and life of one's partner, that is criminal. According to the Los Angeles study, "High-risk unprotected anal sex with men by men who self-identify as heterosexual has implications for HIV transmission to any female partners who are likely to be unaware of their male partners risk behavior or HIV status...In fact, of the heterosexual identified HIV-infected men in this study group, almost 40 percent did not always share their HIV status with their female sexual partners.

"One theory is that heterosexual African American men are not reached by the more widespread prevention messages directed toward gay and bisexually identified communities. A second theory is that heterosexual men do not typically circulate in social networks that reinforce sexual norms of risk reduction, as has historically been the case for gay and bisexual men."

Among American Afrikan gay and bisexual men, according the study, the reasons of high infection are, "Less frequent condom use, higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases, injection drug use, crack use, low socioeconomic status, the trade of sex for money or drugs, lack of trust of the health system, and multiple sexual partners." It would seem that many of the mentioned reasons also apply to heterosexual men.

No matter the reasons cited or excuses made, a man who willfully infects his partner with HIV/AIDS now faces serious consequences. According to a bill passed in the California legislature, which has some of the most stringent laws in the country states, "It is a felony for an HIV-infected person to knowingly expose an uninfected person to the virus. The bill makes intentional HIV exposure punishable by up to eight years in prison. It also allows for the disclosure of HIV status if the subject is under criminal investigation for committing the crime.