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Response to the Normal Heart

In: Social Issues

Submitted By sammikay
Words 909
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In 1981, a rare cancer in New York was diagnosed in 41 homosexuals. Back then this rare cancer was called Gay Related Immunodeficiency Disease (GRID). Not only was this disease being sexually transmitted though gay males, but it was spreading like wildfire with little explanation of its characteristics. The Normal Heart is a film that accurately and defiantly portrays the ignorance of the American government and their lack of immediate response to this plague. It is a film that should be watched by every American, nay, every human being so that they know the kinds of cruelty this government is capable of and so that it is known world-wide the severity of this disease. AIDS. There, I said it. That wasn’t so hard. So why was it so painful for the American government to admit they had an epidemic spreading throughout the country? The answer lies in our ignorant background and lack of understanding. Being openly gay in this country often meant not holding a job, being rejecting by peers, and singled out by communities. We lacked the capacity to understand that love holds no boundaries and does not discriminate. We also lacked the capacity to understand that AIDS is a disease that also does not discriminate. After the 41 cases of this “GRID” disease were diagnosed, gay activist Ned Weeks formed the Gay Men’s Health Crisis in 1982. At first I held the belief that Ned Weeks was too aggressive in the way he went about handling the coverage of AIDS, but now I believe he was completely right in publicizing AIDS the way he did. He, along with his colleagues and friends, constantly acknowledged his lack of filter when he spoke. However, it was this exact lack of filter that got the word out about how serious this disease is. Ned fought harder for the safety of gay men more than any activist there. The other members were frightened and mournful about the close friends dying...

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