20 Years of Magic: How One Man's HIV Disclosure Inspired Others

20 Years of Magic: How One Man's HIV Disclosure Inspired Others

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On Nov. 7, 1991, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, the Los Angeles Lakers basketball superstar, announced in a televised press conference that he was HIV positive. This came as a huge shock to millions of people who had believed for so long that HIV was a disease affecting only gay, white men and IV drug users.

On Nov. 7, 1991, Earvin "Magic" Johnson, the Los Angeles Lakers basketball superstar, announced in a televised press conference that he was HIV positive. This came as a huge shock to millions of people who had believed for so long that HIV was a disease affecting only gay, white men and IV drug users.

His disclosure became a serious game changer. It prompted people who had never thought they were at risk to get tested; it encouraged people to educate themselves about HIV transmission and safer sex; and it lessened stigma and emboldened others to be open with their own HIV status.

So to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Magic's HIV disclosure, we reached out to the HIV community to see how Magic impacted their own work, lives and perception of the HIV epidemic in the U.S.