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Laying It Bare: Gay Men and Unprotected Sex in the Age of HIV/AIDS

    fogcityjohn, blogger for
    Walt Odets, Ph.D.
    Walt Odets, Ph.D., a longtime psychotherapist who has written extensively on HIV prevention and the psychological and social issues facing gay men
    Jeffrey Parsons, Ph.D.
    Jeffrey Parsons, Ph.D., a professor of psychology and co-director of the City University of New York's Center for HIV/AIDS Educational Studies and Training
    Rashad Burgess
    Rashad Burgess, chief of the Capacity Building Branch of the Division of HIV/AIDS at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    "We have liked to feel that \[unprotected anal sex\] was somehow dispensable -- and it's really not, emotionally. ... \[W\]e haven't helped men to think about what they are doing." _\-- Walt Odets, Ph.D._
    "Gay men use condoms far more than heterosexuals, pretty much across the board." _\-- Rashad Burgess_
    "The minute the condom becomes part of the act: this is a reminder to both people that there's something dangerous associated with the act, that instead of making love, they could be killing each other." _\-- Walt Odets, Ph.D._
    "When you look at the traumas that gay men often experience ... it does lead to a yearning for intimacy that takes great precedence over the need for someone to prevent themselves from getting HIV." _\-- Rashad Burgess_
    "Youth are likely to say, 'Look, with everything else that I've been through, I can handle HIV.' And we hear the same thing from older gay men who are seroconverting ... : 'Look, you can live 20, 30 years with HIV. I'm already in my 40s. Why isn't it OK for me to just kind of finally be able to relax about safer sex?'" _\-- Jeffrey Parsons, Ph.D._
    "We have to make sure that the communities of gay men feel good about themselves, and believe that their lives are worth saving." _\-- Rashad Burgess_
    "There's not as much funding available for programs that are designed to deal with some of the underlying issues like depression and loneliness." _\-- Jeffrey Parsons, Ph.D._
    "Every time a state passes a regulation against gay marriage, we're going to have more people infected with HIV. ... The association of HIV with black men involves some of the same kinds of issues. We can't expect to abuse people and then have them take care of themselves." _\-- Walt Odets, Ph.D._