Who's afraid of AIDS?

Are you one of those who think that AIDS is a disease of the past, or maybe one that only homosexuals, prostitutes and promiscuous people get? Actually AIDS still kills and it isn't a disease of the "outcasts" either.

If you think such things about this notorious infection, don't feel bad about it. There are many who think that HIV doesn't cause the disease, despite all evidence proving the contrary.

New Scientist has published two relevant articles on it. One is about the 5 myths of HIV and AIDS, showing the pros and the cons of each myth. The other one is a point-blank report on the present occurrences of the disease.

It tells of how denialism is present in the internet, misleading the gullible:

"Denialism has been relegated to the fringes of the internet, but it isn't of no consequence," says John Moore, an immunologist at Weill Cornell Medical College, Ithaca, New York, and one of the world's foremost AIDS researchers. "It can still cost the lives of unsuspecting people."

Internet is a great democracy, something like an "all-men's land", and being so, much of what is published in it is foolish, superstitious, wicked even. How can you know whether what draws your attention on the web is worth your time or not?

The only way is to question every piece of information, research reliable sources, compare facts, go deep into the matter. It's no easy task, but don't get the impression it's boring. If you keep your mind open, you'll certainly find much more than what you first went looking for.

Back to the article, another interesting point is the answer to the accusations that the so-called "AIDS myth" is kept because there are reputations at stake and it's lucrative to pharmaceutical companies. The article says:

It is certainly true that the scientific peer-review process can slow down the acceptance of new theories. And pharmaceutical companies hardly have a spotless record either. Yet the clinical and epidemiological evidence for the viral cause of AIDS is overwhelming, from virologists who see HIV under their microscopes, to doctors the world over who witness AIDS patients begin ART and make dramatic recoveries.

That's what makes the difference between fact and fiction. There's a thin line between both, but if you look hard enough you will find it.

Check this site for more information on the disease and how to prevent it: http://www.avert.org/prevent-hiv.htm

Take care!

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