No, this is an education and outreach opportunity, and I want to use it to the best of my ability as an HIV researcher.
1– I am so glad Charlie Sheen got tested for HIV. Most people who should be, dont, because even faced with a treatable, deadly disease, denial is *incredibly* attractive. ‘If I dont know, then it cant be real’ is a tall hurdle *many* of us will have to clear for some reason, at some point in our lives. Sheen got tested, and that is the first step to stopping HIV.
2– “I have to… I have to. I am here to admit, in fact, I am HIV positive.”
‘Coming out’ is obviously very difficult for Sheen, and not something he felt comfortable doing. Sheen was forced out– I have also heard rumors he was paying people to keep this information private. Complete and utter bullshit. Sheen doesnt owe the general public knowledge about his medical heath. It is fine if someone wants to be a celebrity voice for <insert any disease/cause/whatever>, but someones HIV status is literally no one elses business except the people they are having sex with.
Forcing someone out like this, in 2015, is deplorable.
3– There has been some suggestion that the ‘reason’ people forced him out, was that Sheen was not open with all of his sexual partners. Sheen says “… threatening the health of so many others, which couldnt be farther from the truth.” But both statements could be true. HIV+ individuals on antiretroviral therapy, who have low/undetectable viral loads, who use condoms, their partners are at low risk of becoming infected. But it is the *partners* decision whether the risk, however negligible, is acceptable. Not telling someone, and making the executive decision about risk for them, is 100% unacceptable. While there is argument over whether this should be criminal, or not, I am of the opinion that if you are HIV positive, it is not your decision to declare your partner is not at risk. Educate yourself, educate your partner, and make these decisions together.
Use condoms. Get tested. Educate yourself. Educate your partner. Encourage your politicians to get everyone who is HIV+ access to proper medications. And unless you are sleeping with a celebrity, their HIV status is none of your damn business.