2020 Democrats Push for Repealing Law Requiring HIV Disclosure


It has already killed 32 million people and has impacted black communities at a far higher rate than other groups.

No, it’s not police brutality. It’s not gun violence. It’s the HIV virus — but now refusing to tell a sexual partner about carrying this infection could become legal, at least if several Democrats get their way.

On Thursday, several Democratic candidates made an appearance at a CNN town hall that had LGBT issues as its theme, the Washington Examiner reported.

Around half of all states have made it illegal to knowingly conceal a positive virus status from others. That could change: Three major Democrat candidates — Buttigieg, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Sen. Cory Booker — have now voiced support for tossing out the laws that require HIV-positive individuals to reveal their status to sexual partners.

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Pete Buttigieg, the openly gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana, used Thursday’s town hall to add his voice to the side of repealing these laws.

Host  Anderson Cooper said that these laws criminalizing HIV nondisclosure are “antiquated law based on old science.”

“It’s not fair and it needs to change” Buttigieg replied.

Should hiding an HIV status from partners be illegal?

Two other Democrats quickly echoed that statement. Both Sen. Warren and Sen. Booker endorsed repealing those laws the same night, with Booker claiming that they had “no scientific basis.”

That’s a bit of an odd stance, considering the deeply serious nature of HIV and AIDS.

“Approximately 1.1 million people in the U.S. are living with HIV today. About 15 percent of them (1 in 7) are unaware they are infected,” the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services said.

True enough, the medical community has made major progress in managing HIV infections. People who detect the virus early and receive modern, consistent treatment now have a much better prognosis, compared to what was essentially a death sentence several decades ago.

But even though long-term treatment has been able to reduce the viral load below detectable limits in many patients, there is still no true cure for HIV and the harsh reality is that it continues to kill.

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“In 2017, 17,803 people in the U.S. and 6 dependent areas received a stage 3 (AIDS) diagnosis,” HHS reported. That stage is essentially terminal if left untreated. For comparison, the FBI reported that far fewer people — 10,982 — were murdered by firearms in America that same year.

Despite the advances in treatment, a high percentage of HIV patients are still contagious. Of all Americans with the virus, “51% had achieved viral suppression,” according to the HHS.

That means that 49 percent of HIV-positive people in the United States still have a viral load that could infect or potentially kill their sexual partners.

And that is the real problem with the far-left position of Democrats on this issue. It seems to be based on wishful thinking, rather than facing the hard and inconvenient facts.

HIV and AIDS are terrible viruses, and no person should have to suffer from them. That’s why medical research and development — much of it happening here in the United States — are so important.

But working toward a better future for people from all backgrounds doesn’t mean ignoring reality. For all the talk about “common sense” proposals, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of sense from the left these days.

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Benjamin Arie is an independent journalist and writer. He has personally covered everything ranging from local crime to the U.S. president as a reporter in Michigan before focusing on national politics. Ben frequently travels to Latin America and has spent years living in Mexico.