No AIDS In The White Community
“[The] Black AIDS Institute reported that if African-Americans with HIV/AIDS were their own country, they would make up more HIV/AIDS cases than seven of the countries currently receiving emergency funding for… AIDS. Think about that. There are almost 600,000 African-Americans living with HIV, and there are still 30,000 newly infected cases every year. As things stand now, AIDS remains the leading cause of death among African-American women between the ages of 25 and 34, and the second-leading cause of death among African-American men between 35 and 44 years of age.”
“As Jesse Milan, board chair of the institute, said, ‘When the world wasn’t looking, the AIDS epidemic refused to go away.’ AIDS has always been a disparate African-American problem. Even at the beginning of this epidemic in the United States, when there were only a few thousand cases, more than a quarter of them were among African-Americans.”
“Today, 47% of the HIV cases in the United States are in African Americans, even though African Americans make up only 13% of the population. If you peer deeper into certain cities, you find of all the HIV cases in Washington DC, 80 percent are among African Americans. In Jackson, Mississippi – 84%.” – Doctor Sanjay Gupta
Mr. Gupta went on to say that the AIDS rates in the Latino community is also on the rise. Although Hispanics make up about fourteen percent of the population, they account for about twenty two percent of new diagnoses tallied as reported by federal officials in 2006. Mr. Gupta never mentioned what rates or numbers were for the white community or how much of a problem it truly is. It appears that this disease isn’t an issue for the country until it becomes a problem for the non white communities. So I decided to go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for myself to get the information I wanted.
According to the table I found (click here), at the end of 2006 there were 439,693 cases of HIV/AIDS in the United States. Of this total 154,495 cases are in the white community and 191,590 cases are in the black community. That’s a breakdown of 35% for the white community and 44% for the black community.
Unfortunately I couldn’t find a state by state breakdown for 2006 (click here for access to all the 2004 tables). I had to go back to the 2004 tables to find a breakdown across the states, District of Columbia, and other United States territories such as Guam and Puerto Rico. While it is true that areas like Washington, D.C. and the state of Maryland can have black infection rates of about eighty percent of all cases, I discovered that states like Montana, Maine, Idaho, and Oregon will have white infection rates that can go as high as ninety percent. Would Mr. Gupta be willing to go public and say that there are areas where white infection rates are so high that they mimic what is happening in some of the worse places in Africa? Would the good doctor be willing to say that the number of HIV/AIDS cases in the white community appears to be just behind the numbers for the black community? Is anybody making the claim that if white people were their own country they would out number six of the countries currently receiving funding for HIV/AIDS?
I went through the numbers and added them all up in a spreadsheet. In between 2001 and 2004, over a four year time span, there were 365,444 new infection cases of HIV/AIDS in the white community and 360,860 cases in the black community, a virtual tie. And yet, at the end of 2006, there are only 154,495 white people living with HIV/AIDS and 191,590 black people with the disease were still alive at the same time. Although the black cases are high, higher than the numbers in the white community, it is far less than the six hundred thousand reported by Mr. Gupta. Nevertheless, it could be assumed that even with more access to better healthcare, more white people appear to be dying from the disease than black people.
But Mr. Gupta was not talking about numbers, he was talking about rates. Black people are only thirteen percent of the population but make up forty four percent of cases. Therefore, black rates are many times that of white people who only make up thirty five percent of cases and about seventy percent of the population. Rates are the only things that matter.
And if Mr. Gupta was truly a man of medicine, which implies he’s a man of science, he might have put some context on these numbers. Poverty plays a large role in the proliferation of this disease. A lack of education and a lack of opportunities play significant roles in the spread of HIV/AIDS. A lack of healthcare and a lack of family planning are huge factors. And all of these contributing factors runneth over in the black community.
But what’s the objective of Mr. Gupta’s story? Is he actually trying to help the black community or is his objective is to reinforce the stereotypical negative sentiment most people associate with black people and our behavior? Where was Mr. Gupta when HIV/AIDS was more prevalent in the white community? Did Mr. Gupta ever do a program where he talked about how the white community is so ravaged? Why is the black community his sole focus for this disease? Are we to believe that white people do not suffer from HIV/AIDS?
And why the focus only on HIV/AIDS? According to the Florida coroner that examined the body of Martin Lee Anderson, latent sickle cell traits are killing fourteen year old black males in boot camps. Why isn’t Mr. Gupta advocating something being done about all of these so-called dangerous latent sickle cell traits? Or how about a little help bringing attention to the black community’s susceptibility to hypertension or diabetes? Better yet, why doesn’t Doctor Gupta do something to help the black community obtain something that resembles racial equality in America instead of contributing to the negative stereotypes that makes the black community the subject of everything bad?
HIV/AIDS is a problem for the entire country. No one should be focusing on any single segment of the population. Any modern man of science who tries to give solace by saying only black people are a problem is a fraud and a quack. Mr. Gupta needs to hang his head in shame.