World AIDS Day

While I missed it, the good people at Crooked Timber did not; they offered this thoughtful commentary:

Today is World Aids Day, and UN AIDS reports that another 14.000 children, women and men will become infected with HIV today. This year is 25 years ago that the first case was reported. In those 25 years, there has been a gigantic difference in the impact of HIV/AIDS on the affluent societies versus the poor societies, especially in sub-Saharan African. The life expectancy in some African countries such as Botswana and Swaziland is now well below 35 years. And even these statistics do not reveal the grim reality of children who are growing up without adults, in what social scientists now call ‘childheaded households’. How can a 12 year old girl feed her younger siblings? If there are no neighbours or organisations supporting them, it is likely that her only short-term survival option is prostitution. Long-term survival is something these children simply cannot contemplate.

The theme of this World Aids Day is accountability – not only of individuals who are having unsafe sex (especially those who are infecting others through unwanted sex), but also of religious leaders discouraging the use and promotion of condoms, political leaders of rich societies who don’t give enough money to fight the epidemic, and political leaders in severely HIV/AIDS-affected countries, such as Doctor Beetroot, who are misinforming the population.
Folks, just because we don't like to think about AIDS certain that it really doesn't "affect" us doesn't mean we can.