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My Birthday Wish List

By Aless Piper

August 19, 2011

As children we are taught that if we tell our birthday wish(es) it won't come true, but as an adult, I believe the opposite is true: If we don't tell our wishes they won't come true ... people aren't psychic after all. My birthday is in a few days, so with that in mind I want to share my wish list with all of you in hopes that you can help make some of my wishes come true:

  1. Stand up and be counted against injustice wherever you see it. Dan Choi was on to something when he said "Fighting for justice isn't fighting for JUST US."

    People can continue to think Larry Kramer was an alarmist at best, or a sufferer of persecution complex at worst, all they want, but I think he had a point when, early on, he started talking about the Holocaust and AIDS in the same breath. The Holocaust was allowed to happen the same way AIDS has been allowed to happen: because of the inaction of the people, some who saw something wicked this way comes, but still chose to do nothing. Break the cycle.

  2. Donate to an AIDS Walk. You can donate to mine or someone else's, I'm not picky on this one. Alternatively, if the AIDS Walk nearest and dearest to your heart has already been and gone, consider donating time or money to your local ASO.
  3. Tell Toronto Mayor Ford what you think of his AIDS funding-related plans and tell him he was elected to serve ALL the people in his city, gay men and injection drug users included. But please, keep it civilized.
  4. Please sign every petition you can put your name on to strike down DOMA and protect binational couples like Bradford and Anthony. As my hairstylist said, "Regardless of your values or personal beliefs imagine if this was your husband or wife being sent away ... because you identified as heterosexual." And please ask Obama to intervene and provide access to lifesaving HIV meds for the well over 9,000 Americans currently being denied them. And finally,
  5. Take some time to talk to the kids in your life about the importance of equality for every single person. There are even kids' books to help you. Please do it, I cannot stress enough how important this is.

I have a dream that one day I won't be lamenting where all the red ribbons have gone because AIDS will be a distant memory. I have a dream that one day there will be equality for LGBT persons all the way across the United States and Canada, and school children will need a dictionary to define homophobia for them, and the very idea of it will seem ludicrous.

According to Disney's Cinderella movie, a dream is a wish your heart makes. How about helping mine come true?

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See Also
10 Black HIV/AIDS Advocates Who Are Making a Difference
More Info and Guides on HIV Activism
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Aless Piper

Aless Piper

Aless Piper is a 20-something office assistant by day, world-changer by night. She is a voracious reader, and addicted to iced caramel correttos from her favorite coffee shop. She has been reading TheBody.com for more than half her life.

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