Dispatches from the Creation Wars

PFOX Lies About Teens with HIV

Regina Griggs of PFOX (Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays) continues to tell whoppers. In this article at OneNewsNow she tells a huge lie:

“Why are we allowing people to tell them, ‘Try it — you might like it?’ Over 70 percent of young kids 13- to 24-years-old, men having sex with men, are now HIV-positive,” Griggs notes.

Over 70% of 13 to 24 year olds who are men having sex with men (MSM) are HIV-positive? That’s absolutely ridiculous, not even in the ballpark. Here’s the most recent CDC report, which does in fact note that HIV infections have increased among MSM between 13 and 24. But 70%? Not even close.

The new CDC study found a total of 214,379 people of both genders testing positive for HIV between 2001 and 2006. 46% of them were among MSM, or about 98,000 of them. And of that total, 13,584 of them were between 13 and 24. That’s up 12.4% from previous figures, so it’s certainly troubling and needs to be addressed. But that sure as hell doesn’t constitute 70% of all gay men between 13 and 24, folks. Not even close.

According to the 2000 census figures, there are roughly 50 million people between the age of 13 and 24. Slightly more than half would be female, so let’s say conservatively that there are 22 million men between those ages. If 2% of them are MSM, that’s 440,000. The percentage of HIV positive MSM between 13 and 24 is more like 3.1%, a far cry from 70%. Okay, it’s probably a bit higher than that because there will be some men in that age group who were diagnosed before 2001, but at the absolute outside we’re talking 5%, not 70%.

She also makes the ridiculous claim that teenagers can’t self-identify as straight or gay. Has she never been a teenager? I knew I was straight the moment I hit puberty and started feeling sexually attracted to girls. Every gay man I know says the exact same thing about feeling sexually attracted to boys at the same time. There wasn’t any confusion about it, you just are what you are, no choice involved.