A new study in the American Journal of Public Health has reported that teenagers are skewing results of LGBT research by providing bogus answers.
Economic professor Joseph R. Cimpian at New York University told The Daily Beast he noticed a high percentage of survey respondent reported being gay and blind.
“What we found is that ‘gay’ kids are way more likely to be blind and to be deaf and to have three or more children of their own and all sorts of things,” he explains. “When you look at these data, you think, ‘This is ridiculous!’”
Alternatively, these so-called “mischievous responders” would also report being extremely tall and/or eating carrots four or more times a day.
“Clearly the kids are messing with us,” Cimpian concludes.
The professor and his colleagues have been using machine learning and supercomputers to statistically filter out the mischievous responders — a majority of whom, unsurprisingly, are teenage boys.
The results of this process suggest the disparity between straight and queer teens’ excessive alcohol and drug use are “not as big as the literature previously would have suggested,” Cimpian reports.
But the hoodwinking hasn’t affected the statistics about bullying, depression, and suicidal ideation among LGBT teens. “It actually shows that [the LGBT mental health disparity] is a very robust finding,” Cimpian explained.
The “mischievous responders” issue is a big problem — especially because these surveys have been used to shape public policy — but Cimpian observes that it’s hard to get teens to take their role in the research seriously.
“A lot of times when I even talk to fellow faculty members about this, they say things like, ‘Oh, I would have been the kid that you would call a mischievous responder,’” he says.
Or, as The Daily Beast’s Samantha Allen writes, “The allure of depicting yourself as a 10,000-foot-tall, carrot-chomping, gay cocaine addict may, for some youth, be too great to resist.”
Scientists are speaking out against a directive by the Trump administration that has shut down research into a cure for HIV.
A scientist who was supposed to supply mice that have been modified with human fetal tissue for an HIV study emailed researchers that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) “has directed me to discontinue procuring fetal tissue.”
“This effectively stops all of our research to discover a cure for HIV,” he wrote.
A “pause” on research that uses aborted fetal tissue, something Christian conservatives strongly oppose, was announced by the Trump administration this past September. The move will affect numerous biomedical research programs.
Congressional Republicans have tried to ban all fetal tissue research for years to appease the religious right. 85 Republican House members wrote a letter to the head of the FDA asking for a ban on fetal tissue research shortly before the “pause” was announced.
The ban has long been a goal of the anti-abortion industry and has been part of the most recent attacks on Planned Parenthood. The group was falsely accused of selling aborted fetuses earlier this year.
In a statement, the NIH said that there is only a “pause in place” on the research, which is “an action NIH thought was prudent given the examination of these procurements.”
“We were all poised to go and then the bombshell was dropped,” said Warner Greene, director of the Gladstone Center for HIV Cure Research. Greene was about to collaborate with the Montana lab on HIV research when the project came to a halt.
“The decision completely knocked our collaboration off the rails. We were devastated.”
The study would have relied on fetal tissue donated by women who have had legal abortions in order to produce “humanized mice,” mice that have human-like immune systems, according to Science. The mice have been used for years for research in infectious diseases, including HIV.
Mice are one of the few non-human animals that can be infected with HIV, which makes them key to testing HIV medication.
Researchers at the lab were going to test a promising antibody they developed to prevent HIV from developing reservoirs, which are cells infected with HIV but are not producing the virus. These cells aren’t affected by currently available HIV medication.
“You spend your life trying to do good experiments and organize your science carefully, and suddenly, at the whim of some politicians in Washington, D.C., they remove a critical piece of your scientific armamentarium,” Greene said.
On September 28, researcher Kim Hasenkrug, who was supposed to provide humanized mice for Greene’s study on the HIV antibody, sent an email to Greene explaining that HHS told them to stop using fetal tissue.
[HHS] has directed me to discontinue procuring fetal tissue from ABR, the only source for us. I think that they are the only provider of fetal tissue for scientists in the nation who don’t have direct access to aborted fetal tissue. This effectively stops all of our research to discover a cure for HIV.
“The mice were ready,” Greene said. “Just as we’d shipped antibody [to Montana], we were ready to go, and boom, the rug was pulled out from underneath us.”
It is unclear whether non-NIH labs that receive NIH funding will also be banned from using fetal tissue. If so, even more research will be affected.
“Everything I am doing involves humanized mice. It would shut my lab down if we were not able to use fetal tissues,” said Jerome Zack, who has used humanized mice for 25 years to study HIV at UCLA.
But Greene said that the NIH’s actions have already slowed down progress on a cure.
“If we were given the green light right now, it would probably take us a year to get back in the position we were in when the ban was put in place,” he said.
Earlier this year, the Department of Health and Human Services announced a new Conscience and Religious Freedom Division that would handle complaints from health care providers who did not want to take part in an abortion or treat transgender people.
Written by: Alex Bollinger. 10 December, 2018. LGBTQNation.com
The film Philadelphia marked a turning point in Hollywood history–the moment when mainstream movies could finally tackle the proverbial elephant in the room: AIDS. Said beast had long cast a shadow over Tinseltown when the movie finally hit cinemas in 1993. Celebrities like Rock Hudson had already died of the disease, and the Reagan & Bush White Houses had done their best to ignore the epidemic. It was the crime of the century, writing HIV/AIDS off as a “behavior-based” condition, which allowed it to become an international pandemic which actually hit many more straight people than gay men.
With Philadelphia, Hollywood joined the cry of the LGBTQ community for empathy, with major stars like Denzel Washington and Tom Hanks (who won his first Oscar) appearing in the movie, which became a major hit with audiences and changed the way many people thought about the disease.
Now Coca-Cola has partnered with the noted anti-AIDS charity (Red) to produce a new video recalling that pre-Philadelphia world, the impact of the film, and how American progress since Reagan (yes, even President George W. Bush became a champion in the fight) has helped stem the spread of HIV, especially in sub-Saharan Africa.
Featuring interviews with Hanks, Washington and co-star Mary Steenburgen, the emotional short film reminds viewers of one powerful truth: even in the most desperate of times, we can still find hope.
Written by: David Reddish
Health care experts have been informed of a US man contracting HIV despite being on PrEP. He’s thought to be the first man in California – and only the third in the US – to contract HIV while adhering to a daily PrEP regime.
PrEP is a medication that minimizes the chances of someone acquiring HIV, even if they do not use condoms.
News of the case was presented at the annual IDWeek conference in San Francisco, which concluded over the weekend. The conference is run by the Infectious Diseases Society of America.
The man was HIV negative when he began taking PrEP in San Francisco in late 2016. He continued to diagnose HIV negative when testing at three, six and ten months. Blood tests also demonstrated he continued to take his medication consistently.
HIV positive after being on PrEP for a year
After just over a year on PrEP, he received an HIV positive diagnosis in early 2018. He was immediately placed on HIV drugs and has maintained a suppressed viral load since that time.
Doctors were able to accurately diagnose the exact strain of HIV he picked up. It’s one identified with people who have taken HIV medication in the past but no longer take it. It was then revealed that the patient’s main male partner was HIV positive but no longer taking medication.
The partner was tested and found to have a high viral load of the resistant strain. He has resumed taking medication.
Researchers say it was the fact the patient came into contact with a resistant strain that led to him acquiring the virus. They believe he stuck to his PrEP regime well. They could tell this from analyzing his hair, which he happened to grow long.
Dr. Robert Grant, of the University of California San Francisco, said, ‘[The patient’s] long hair allowed us to test by centimeters, which allowed us to go back and read drug levels from six months ago.’
Previous cases of men becoming HIV positive while on PrEP
There have been five previous reports on men acquiring HIV while on Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP). The first two occurred in Toronto and New York in 2016. In 2017, there were three more cases. One involved a man in North Carolina, one in Australia, and a fifth a man in Amsterdam.
The first four cases are believed to be due to the person on PrEP having sex with someone with a high viral load of a rare, resistant strain of HIV.
The fifth case is not believed to be linked to a drug-resistant strain of HIV. The Amsterdam man had an ‘unusually high number’ of sexual partners – averaging 50-70 a month – and several other sexual infections. Researchers have speculated he may have repeatedly exposed himself to HIV, which took a hold in his body after a slight dip in Truvada levels.
‘Greater than 99% effective’
Health experts say despite these rare cases, PrEP remains highly effective. The medication is taken by more than 350,000 people worldwide.
Dr. Grant said, ‘We know PrEP is greater than 99% effective. There are some cases where HIV will break through. We only have a handful of cases now, and next year, we’ll probably have a handful more. Fortunately, these cases are caught early, treated, and suppressed quickly. The person goes from taking one pill a day to one pill a day. The biggest difference is the stigma.’
Matthew Hodson, Chief Executive of HIV information organization NAM, agrees. 'We estimate that PrEP is more than 99% effective at preventing HIV. By comparison, a recent meta-analysis of the efficacy of condoms found that they prevented nine out of ten cases, this was a better result than previous analyses.
‘PrEP is still better than condoms at preventing HIV. PrEP failure makes the news. Condom failure doesn’t.
He said that in the UK, 93% of people diagnosed with HIV have suppressed the virus to a point where it cannot be passed on ‘in any circumstance.’ This is regardless of whether it’s a drug-resistant strain or not.
‘It’s vital to acknowledge that PrEP, just like other safer sex strategies isn’t 100% effective. It is also vital not to let isolated cases obscure how effective it is. PrEP has played a significant role in bringing down new HIV infections in London, Sydney, New York, San Francisco and other cities around the world.’
H/T: The Body Pro
Source: Hudson, David. California man on PrEP medication acquires HIV.9 October 2018. Gay Star News.
The contagious and deadly bacteria Neisseria meningitis has been reported in Berlin. Considered one of the deadest, meningitis is spread through saliva and respiratory secretions. Authorities in Berlin are asking those who have visited KitkatClub nightclub to seek an immediate test for the bacterium.
A man who attended the “CameBall” on Saturday, September 29 has been hospitalized and is in critical conditions and at the current time is unable to describe his sexual contact at the event, so health officials are asking everyone who attended to get tested and vaccinated.
Deutsche Welle reports: “The bacteria strains A, C, Y and W135 are believed to have been possibly spread at the music-thumping Berlin institution, known for wild and raunchy sex acts being performed out in the open or in nooks and crannies…Common symptoms include severe headache, high fever, chills, dizziness, neck stiffness and extreme malaise. Within a few hours, a life-threatening infection can develop. The infection can be treated with antibiotics.”
Wrote Berlin officials: “All persons on KitKatClub on Saturday should seek preventative treatment immediately. Please contact your family doctor, your family doctor or the emergency department of a hospital immediately. On Saturday, 29.09.2018, there was, according to current knowledge, the transmission of bacterial meningitis (meningococcal meningitis) in KitKatClub in Köpenicker Straße 76, 10179 Berlin-Mitte. So far, it is known that the meningococci belong to one of the groups A, C, Y, W135. The infection takes place via liquids from the mouth and throat area. As a rule, this requires a very close contact. Preventive treatment usually consists of taking an antibiotic. Meningococcal meningitis is a serious disease. Common symptoms include severe headache, high fever, chills, dizziness, neck stiffness and extreme malaise. Within a few hours, a serious, life-threatening clinical picture can develop.”
Age is just a number… or is it?
A new survey conducted by Gay Star News that found that a whole lot of people are lying about their age on dating apps. Over 3,000 people participated in the survey, which was conducted earlier this month. One if four respondents admitted they had lied about their age at least once while chatting with a potential new hookup.
Among those people who say they’ve been dishonest on their quests to get laid:
The answer is pretty simple: Agism.
When asked about agism, 60% of respondents said their experience of dating was “totally” ageist, compared to 16% who said the scene was a “little” ageist, and 6% who said it was “maybe” ageist.
Many respondents also expressed fear about getting older. 31% said they were terrified about losing their looks, while 42% said they worried about losing their partner or loved ones.
Let’s be honest about this. It is no secret that some (most) gay men will lie about their age. We live in an age, body-obsessed culture. So, when you turn a certain age you are no longer considered good looking or “hot”.
Shane Cook who performs for Helix Studios has announced this week that he is battling cancer. He made the announcement on Twitter.
Cook posted a photo of himself and explained that he was “tired of being embarrassed about something I have no control over.”
He explained that he has been diagnosed with stage 2 Hodgkin’s lymphoma cancer, which affects the immune system.
Shane also said that he has experienced some hair and muscle loss, but that he is doing well and expects to make a full recovery. He is also looking forward to getting back to work.
Shane has appeared in a number of Helix Studio scenes, including Will it Fit?, Dig In, and Afterparty Pound.
We wish him a speedy and full recovery!
It appears that Facebook has been accused of micotargeting conversion therapy ads promoting “sexual purity” to young gay users in the United Kingdom. In a recent investigation by the Telegraph, ads were found selling the idea that gay people might be turned straight. The ad “Why am I seeing this ad?” suggested that users were interested because they were interested in “gender issues.”
This is one of the ads, titled “Homosexuality Was My Identity,” and supposedly targeted to users who liked LGBTQ pages:
It is suggested that gayness is something to be overcome with the help of Jesus.
Tessa Ann Schwarz, who identifies as a lesbian, is one person who saw the ad.
“I don’t know why Facebook has permitted this group to target LGBTQ people, who have intentionally sought out community and education amongst peers, for shaming and hatred masked as love,” she told the Telegraph.
Alistair Ryder was shown an ad for the book Evangelical Man, Same-Sex Attraction, which is supposed to be a fun summer read and promotes celibacy. “There was nothing overtly homophobic about the ad I saw itself,” Ryder said, “but it was written in a way to try to appeal to people who may be depressed or self-loathing due to their sexuality.”
Now Facebook does not hand-approve such ads, and that’s the problem – how can Facebook regulate its automated targeted ad market, since it’s fully-automated?
Ryder and Schwarz both flagged the ads as inappropriate. At that time a moderator took action and removed them as they violated Facebook’s ad policy that bans any ad “that discriminates against harasses, provokes or disparages people.”
Griff Ferris of the UK civil rights group Big Brother watch say the process has some major flaws. “Targeted advertising is aggressive and manipulative, using the personal and private information to exploit people’s innermost fears, desires, and prejudices,” he told the Telegraph. “Therefore it must be restricted to protect people’s rights.”
If you’re into porn especially from 2007 to 2010 then there’s a big chance you remember Logan McCree. The German-born performer is best known for his head-to-toe tattoos; his scalp, butt cheeks, and penis have tattoos. He was a scruffy versatile porn star, super sexy and dabbled in kink. But, sad to say and much to our regret that since leaving the porn industry, he has now turned his attention to men’ rights and is now an activist (MRA).
Robert Jackman a reporter for VICE met McCree at the International Conference on Men’s Issues last month.
It appears that since leaving the porn industry, Tanzer (his real name is Philipp Tanzer) he has moved to Scotland and runs an art gallery. Tanzer did identify as gay while working in porn, but says he never really felt like he fit into the gay world. So, he started dating women, but did manage to sleep with men on the side (with permission).
Jackman reported that Tanzer’s interest in MRA issues began when he began to think about having a child with his girlfriend. Though he still has no children, he heard stories about fathers losing custody of their children to mothers and worried that the same thing might one day happen to him.
Jackman says lots of men become MRAs out of fear of what might happen to them.
“Tanzer insisted he had always supported gender equality,” Jackman writes. “The problem for him, [Tanzer] said, was that most modern feminists now shunned egalitarianism in favor of special privileges for women, while simultaneously labeling themselves as victims.”
Jackman doesn’t ask Tanzer how he feels about MRAs having a long gross history of allies who defend child molesters and racist groups like the KKK, oppose women and people of color appearing in film, accuse women of regularly falsifying rape accusations (even though only 2 to 10% of all rape accusations are fake) and issue rape and death threats to women online, calling attempts to stop them “censorship.”
Men face real social issues and can MRA’s handle those issues?
Outside the biannual international AIDS conference activists took to the street using the ‘U=U’ chant. This is a new rallying cry for people living with HIV that delivers the message that people who are on treatment and undetectable are not capable of transmitting the virus to their sexual partners, was front and center throughout much of the march as it wound its way through the narrow streets and canals of Amsterdam.
Gay men, women, sex workers from around the world appeared united in educating the world what it means to be undetectable and getting governmental agencies and health officials to sign onto the message, which comes as a major breakthrough.
There is no doubt that these activists are willing and capable to speak for themselves, a video taken by Mark S. King show them marching and chanting with passion.