How Has the Politics of HIV-AIDS Operated as a Conduit for Social and Cultural Prejudice?
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a viral infection that affects the human body. The virus attacks the CD4 cells thus destroying them in the process. With the reduction of CD4 cells, the body develops deficiency as far as protection against infection is concerned. The victim is said to have developed deficiency in immune system a state referred to as the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). AIDS refers to a “collection of symptoms, diseases, and infections associated with Acquired deficiency of the immune system” (Kamradt-Scott 2012, p. 89). AIDS infections have been very prevalent in the developing countries especially those based in Africa. It is estimated that of all the cases of AIDS in the world a two thirds of them have been reported in African. Still, it is believed that the first scenario of HIV/AIDS was reported in Africa. HIV is considered among the highly infectious diseases (Kamradt-Scott 2012, p. 90). The effects of AIDS do not end with the infected but bears its roots wide spread to meet the affected. This includes the family, society, country, and the whole world. This is so since it is the responsibility of each individual to try in their own capacity not to fall victims of the same, which is a very daunting task difficult to avoid. HIV/AIDS has already been declared a pandemic in the whole world. This paper looks at how the politics associated with HIV/AIDS have operated as a conduit for social and cultural prejudice. The prevalence of HIV/AIDS has been associated with society culture and sexuality, myth and misconceptions, poverty, and stigmatization among other major contributors.
Society, Culture and sexuality
Society, culture, and sexuality have played a very crucial role in the prevalent spread of the HIV/AIDS infection in the whole world and more specifically the sub Sahara Africa. The society has been involved in many indulgences that have actually compromised the general behaviour of the society. The society has been forced to cling to the old activities that have ended up compromising their behaviour and their general activities. Furthermore, “stemming HIV is not only a medicine problem but also a social, cultural and political challenge” (Bleiker 2007, p. 140). The society has been forced to indulge in wife inheritance, polygamy, women sharing, and circumcision. These activities have exposed the society to the risks of HIV/AIDS.
In most of the developing countries, communities have for a long time clanged on the practise of polygamy. On the broader ground, this has been practised in Africa. Most of the communities found in the sub Saharan region require their men to have more than one wife. Marrying has been reduced to how rich an individual is. The wealth of an individual is counted in terms of how many herds of cattle an individual owns. These circumstances have necessitated the spread of the HIV/AIDS virus since the use of condom is a vocabulary nobody understands. Taking it as an example, a man marries the first two wives who are HIV/AIDS free, in the process, he marries another one who is infected with the disease, and he will automatically be infected after the sexual intercourse. Marrying a second, third, or another wife does not mean that the man is relieved his obligations as a man to the wife or wives he had married earlier, no. He is required to continue satisfying them in bed as the case was earlier. Nevertheless, as the above expressed case, if the newly married wife carried HIV/AIDS virus to the family, then all the wives of the new husband will automatically be infected.
The tradition of circumcision for both men and women in the society has greatly contributed to the rapid spread of the HIV/AIDS virus. Apart from distorting the private parts of an individual, the act leaves an individual to lose blood for a long period. The open wound further exposes an individual to other infections that would have been avoided if the act were carried out in a modernised way, using modern tools and technology and being carried out by a professional. The act of passing the knife from one individual to the next has actually led to the spread of the disease especially if one of the members of the group has the HIV/AIDS virus then automatically all the individuals who come after him are in a great risk of being infected. The back as far as this act is concerned does not stop with the young men; some communities especially in the Sub Sahara Africa have extended this act to include women. Vasectomy act just as circumcision has exposed many young women to the risk of HIV/AIDS since the haphazard ways just like those applied during circumcision are applied thus exposing them to a greater danger. For the women, the situation is too compromising since the whole process is internal and thus the blood shedding is internal.
The act of polygamy practise in most of the communities especially in Sub Saharan Africa has exposed so many individuals to the threat of HIV/AIDS. In the African setting, the ability to offset dowry serves as a direct ticket to marrying someone else’s daughter. In most cases, dowry payment is done by using the cattle and other domesticated livestock’s such as goats. Most of the men have ended up marrying many wives; an instance in particular was reported in Kenya one of the countries found in the African content and one in which HIV/AIDS prevalence is on an increase a man from known by the name Akuku Danger had so many wives and children to the disbelief of many. For instance if that particular man had married a wife who had contracted HIV/AIDS virus then he will automatically pass it on to his other wives who are innocent. This is only but one case but the same case has happened only that they go unreported. Polygamy is dangerous especially when the man dies and leaves behind wives who are still young of age and need a husband to take care of them. Supposing the fore said wives had contracted the HIV/AIDS virus then people who will take upon themselves to take care of them will be infected. Still worth mentioning is the fact that the issue of polygamy is not only found with the less privileged individuals in the society. The issue of polygamy needs to be addressed so that the innocent individuals from these communities can be protected from the calamity of HIV and AIDS infections.
Wife sharing is a tradition that is being practiced within some communities in the Africa. This is not based on mutual understanding. If one finds an arrow planted at his/her door then someone from the community is having an affair with his/her wife. Therefore, he/she should not interfere. One is left with no option other than walking to another man’s house that does not have a man by that time and also plant an arrow at the door, and thus go in and have an affair with the wife of the house. This is how the HIV/AIDS virus spreads without the knowledge of many people. The spread of the HIV/AIDS virus by this means goes unnoticed since it is very difficult to tell who slept with your wife and if he had the HIV/AIDS virus. Something worth noting is that, those people who hail from these particular societies have no knowledge concerning HIV/AIDS virus and therefore goes about their businesses innocently. People die of this HIV/AIDS complications, but it is not understood so. Even in these communities, the people are not allowed to use condom. Furthermore, they do not understand their existence, leave alone understanding their usage. In particular the Maasai community found in the Subsahara Africa is a victim of this since do practice this particular tradition.
Myth and misconceptions
Myth and misconceptions held in most communities have denied the fore said communities from understanding the truth about the HIV and AIDS infections, prevention and treatment. First, most communities do not believe in the existence of HIV and AIDS. Moreover, for those who do they have been fed with lies hindering the possibility of countering the menace. The misconceptions about the infection spread and cure of the HIV and AIDS has in return increased the spread of the disease and in the same capacity incapacitated the possibility of coming to reality and assisting in the fight against the disease. The myth and misconceptions held involve the causal and treatment.
Many infected persons have been laid to believe that they can be healed by simply sleeping with a virgin or their own kids. This situation has compromised the lives of many people. In particular, this is purely a misconception. The virgin whom the man in bracket ends up breaking the virgin automatically is infected. Having sex with a virgin is a very dangerous thing to the virgin in question since it involves cell rupture and consequential bleeding. The serious bit lies in the fact that men who are diagnosed with HIV and AIDS are misadvised that if they have sexual intercourse with their daughters, then they will be healed. This situation has led to old men raping their own daughters and infecting them with HIV and AIDS virus hence destroying their whole life. One cannot imagine a man climbing on his own daughter and raping her just in the name of being healed. It is so an imaginable. Although in most cases, the law of the land has taken control of the situation trying to discipline those who make such mistakes, the situation has not improved in any case.
The struggle to obtain the cure for the HIV and AIDS has led people deceiving themselves that if they have sexual intercourse with animals then they will obtain the cure for the HIV and AIDS. This misconception has led to people leaving with HIV and AIDS and at the same time believing that they were cured. The communities, which have hold onto this convolution, have hidden themselves behind the reality of the matter and allowed the disease to elongate its roots in the society. The society that believes in this has been reduced to behaviour just like animals. This supports the fact that of late the there has been media reports that the animals especially those domesticated at home, have been reported to give birth to young ones that look more less like human beings. Hiding behind the reality of HIV and AIDS has exposed the society to the dangers that come along with the disease since the dangers of the disease has remained rooted in the society. Sexual intercourse with an animal does not cure HIV and AIDS. The communities that believe in these misconceptions have exposed most of their members to the adverse effects of the disease. Sooner than later, the HIV and AIDS disease might be already languishing in the animals’ blood. I wonder how the world will be especially when the animals will be diagnosed with the deadly HIV and AIDS virus.
There have been so many misconceptions concerning the ways infection of the HIV and AIDS virus. The well-known ways of contracting the HIV and AIDS virus are the unprotected sexual intercourse with an infected person, blood transfusion from an infected person without the careful involvement of a well-trained medical doctor. Other ways includes mother to child especially during pregnancy or during delivery, more so when the mother is infected and the mother has not gone through the education to enhance the protection by the mother. Still the disease can be contracted through accidental mixing of the blood especially when one of the people is infected. This can happen when the two parties are involved in accident. Many individuals in the society have been conceived to understand that the HIV and AIDS virus can be transmitted through contact with an infected person. This misconception has actually cost the community at large because of this. The situation has in the real sense created a very bad scenario that has resulted into stigmatisation of the infected and even the affected. Contact with an infected person does not transmit the HIV and AIDS virus. People have ignore and mistaken the real causal factors with those that does not really cause HIV and AIDS virus. This situation has led to installation of fear among infected members of the society since they are actually avoided.
The ignorance of most people especially in the developing countries has resulted in the in the belief that individuals who are infected with the HIV and AIDS virus can be noticed by simply looking at the individual. This is not possible in real sense. The scenario has resulted in people mistaking others especially when they are sick. There have been so many situations of mistaken identity. The patients who are suffering from other diseases such as tuberculosis have been mistaken to being carriers of the HIV and AIDS virus. This is mainly because the patients of tuberculosis in most cases have been seen to lose weight, which is a direct symptom of people who have HIV and AIDS virus. Although the HIV and AIDS patients do lose weight, people suffering from other diseases also have been seen losing weight in the same measure.
HIV and AIDS virus transmission is very prevalent through sexual intercourse, and this very possible through oral sex. Most people have been deceived to believe that if you have oral sexual intercourse even with an infected person then it is not possible to be infected. In reality, oral sexual intercourse causes HIV and AIDS infection. With oral sexual intercourse, there is a very high possibility of individuals transmitting HIV/AIDS virus since there is very high chances of causing open wounds in the mouth. In most cases, oral sex has been related to the initiation of the real sexual intercourse to follow thereby. Therefore, oral sexual intercourse is equally dangerous as any other sexual intercourse. The oral sexual intercourse has come out as a very bad portrayal of the society. The prevalence of this act has exposed many of the young people who are deceived that oral sexual intercourse does not lead to contraction of HIV and AIDS virus.
Still on a similar note, most communities have been deceived to believe that the HIV/AIDS virus cannot stay outside the human body for a long period. This is not true in real sense. This explains well why there is a very high possibility of one being infected when they are involved in an accident and they suffer open wounds leading to mixing of the blood and consequential infection of the HIV and AIDS virus. Never be deceived the HIV/AIDS virus can still be infested through open wounds especially when it involves mixing of the blood. In case of an accident, there is a high possibility of infection if the affected party is infected with HIV/AIDS.
Some communities believe that the HIV/AIDS is a viral disease that can only infect the homosexuals, men, and the drug abusers. Kaasholm (2005) supports, “HIV as a disease is was associated with promiscuity” (p 150). It is true that a good number of the HIV/AIDS infections are retrieved from the group that indulge in homosexuality. Most individuals who indulge in homosexuality are found to have HIV and AIDS. This is because they do their acts without any form of protection. Stillwaggon (2003) supports that, HIV spread rapidly among homosexuals (p 810). The biggest blow comes in when the individuals who are involved in these acts are married and therefore end up passing the infection to their loved ones. These are their partners. Homosexuality is an act that is being incorporated into the society of late. There have been heated debates on the legalization of homosexuality into the society. Many human rights groups have come out strongly advocating for the rights for the homosexuality. This has been done without considering the consequences of allowing such behaviour to continue and spread its roots right into the community. The act of homosexuality has led to the spread of the HIV and AIDS virus. Most people have misunderstood this concept. They believe that, if they are not homosexuals, then there is no possibility of contracting the disease. This left many of them especially young people to indulge in unprotected sex without minding about their health. Yes, sincerely speaking most of the individuals who have been diagnosed with HIV and AIDS have been found to be homosexuals. The truth of the matter is that the HIV and AIDS virus infection is for all, it can affect anybody whatever their daily indulgences. The group that is still under investigation is the lesbian group as far as HIV infection is concerned. The question is are lesbians prone to the HIV disease as the homosexuals are
Most drug abusers have been found to have HIV and AIDS virus. The cost of obtaining the drugs such as cocaine, marijuana and many others is very high thus obtaining them is a great problem. According to Clarke (2006), the discovery of “AIDS amongst drug users” (p.317) has prompted many of the drug abusers to use any available means to enable them obtain the same. Most of them and especially women have been forced to indulge in unprotected sexual intercourse just to obtain the money to purchase the drugs. Fordham (2001) calls for monitoring of the drug users as a response (p. 9). Some of the fore said individuals are married and pass the virus to the partners especially when they are drug addicts themselves. It is worth noting that some couples who are drug addicts agree to allow their partners to indulge in sexual intercourse with other people in the name of raising money to buy the drugs. This does not mean that they are the only group that has been diagnosed with HIV and AIDS. This only forms integral part of the society that already has the HIV and AIDS.
According to Kamradt-Scott (2012, p. 94), “The misconception that it is only a number of the CD4 and the T-cells that are infected by HIV” is wrong. When the HIV and AIDS virus affect the immune system of the body, it damages the whole immune system. This has affected the belief of many individuals that the virus only affects part of the body and not the whole body. This misconception has made most of them to believe that probably only a given part of their immune system. With this kind of misconception, the communities have exposed a lot to HIV and AIDS.
Poverty and lifestyle
Poverty has engrossed most developing countries in the world more specifically in the Sub Sahara Africa. This has made the fight against HIV and AIDS a problem. Although there has been advocacy for the use of antiretroviral medicines, many individuals especially those from the developing countries are sown into poverty. Therefore, they cannot afford the HIV/AIDS medicines. The antiretroviral medication at least assists in reducing the effects of the HIV and AIDS disease. The rate of poverty in the Sub Sahara Africa has led to many individuals hailing from these countries to die of HIV and AIDS without even going for the testing process. Stillwaggon (2003) states, “HIV is easily transmitted to persons whose immune systems are compromised by poverty” (p. 810). The poor individuals die for lack of medical attention. The poverty has actually affected the lifestyle of many individuals who are HIV and AIDS victims. The HIV and AIDS victims are required to get good nutritious foods especially when they on antiretroviral medication. Farmer (2006) argues that its poverty has led to deaths and infection of HIV (146). It has taken a long period for the antiretroviral medicine to meet the communities enshrined in poverty. Their woes does not end there, it goes a long way to include the problem of obtaining the medicine. In some countries, there has been reported the cases of distributing counterfeited medicines have been reported.
The issue of stigmatization has spread its roots right into the society that are well hit by the HIV and AIDS. There has been reported instance where the HIV and AIDS patients have been secluded from the general society. The ailing people are segregated by the society (Lupton 2003, p. 9). As Tsarenko and Polonsky (2011) put it, reconstruction for HIV patients is difficult (p 466). A HIV and AIDS patient just like any other patient suffering from any other disease requires moral support from other people that is, friends, family and the whole community at large. Belker (2007) supports this issue. He states that, the stigma on HIV/AIDS victims has withdrawn them from realities of the world (p. 141). They do require people around them, but those who are supposed to surround them tend to rely so much on the myth and misconception that if you relate with a HIV and AIDS patient them there are very high chances of contracting the virus all the same, this is not true at all. There is a need for the government and the community to explain the reality of the matter to the individuals hailing from these particular societies to come to reality concerning HIV and AIDS virus infections, cure and interaction with the patients of HIV and AIDS who ought to hail from those communities. The issue of stigmatization has hampered the efforts of coming to reality with the situation as it is on the ground concerning the realities of the disease itself. Unless this issue is fast addressed in the affected societies to enlighten the society on this issue, the patients and the victims of the disease have very little chance if any of surviving if there still exists any in the first place. Discrimination has in real sense led to individuals not accepting to go for HIV and AIDS testing, hence avoiding the reality of the matter. Stigma is considered the major contributor of stress to HIV care efforts (Demmer 2006, p. 439). For the communities to be able to fight the effects of HIV and AIDS disease, the community should first be ready to address the issue of stigmatization. With stigmatization hiding within the society together with HIV and AIDS, then the community is tasked with fighting two great demons. This war now becomes very difficult because one demon tries to drag the other with it. Fighting the effects of HIV and AIDS depends much on the acceptance of the community about the effects of HIV and AIDS and trying to eradicate the stigma accompanying it.
Religion and the church
The debate and politics of HIV and AIDS has already found its way into our religion. The religion holds an integral part of the society and cannot escape noticing in addressing critical issues that affect the community. HIV and AIDS could not have gone without being addressed by the religion docket. The issue of sexuality has been addressed in the church, with many churches trying to condemn the stand most individuals have taken as far as the issue of sexuality is concerned. Many human right groups and individuals from different sects of life including government have come out strongly to address the issue concerning HIV and AIDS prevalence in the society. Most governments have already declared it a national disaster, meaning that they have already alerted the whole country to be aware of the disease. Different churches have held different opinions concerning the issue especially when it comes to use of condoms as a prevention measure. Some religious leaders have supported the use of condoms while others have opposed it in totality. The argument being that if the individuals will be allowed to use the condom then the society will be compromised. The individuals would have been given an ok to have sex whenever they wish to do so. Pope Benedict, the Sixteenth of the Catholic Church, brought out these particular sentiments. He came out strongly and opposed the use of condom as a way of countering the HIV and AIDS menace. This sentiments were out washed by most leaders, most of whom argued that denying people the right to use condom is exposing them to greater danger of HIV and AIDS in the society. The Pope Benedict’s sentiments to some extent are true considering the fact that the church can only allow its members to have sex when and only when they are married. The marriages as an institution require the man and woman to make love and have children. Children form an integral part of the community and the family to be specific. In African setting, a wife who does not bear children is considered cursed and is returned back to her family. This clearly shows how important children are in the community. The church understood this fact well and that is probably the main reason why the Pope Benedict of the Catholic Church opposed the use of legalising the use of condom. The church cannot be separated from the community and its culture. Most of the cultures held by the communities are integrated into the church undertakings.
When the Pope announced this issue, there was much outcry from the leaders and individuals at large. They campaigned much against the stand taken by the Pope and attacked the Pope and the Catholic Church community condemning them of not taking human dignity at hand while executing some laws. The human rights watchdogs in particular came out strongly and condemned Pope Benedict of stepping onto people’s feet and infringing their rights having protected sexual intercourse. Pope Benedict the sixteen was actually acting in the best interest of the people and understood well that as a spiritual leader he cannot stand before his congregation and advise them to have sex whenever they like. This would have worse than the later.
Medicine and treatment
The politics concerning HIV and AIDS went along way to affect the medical provision sector. The bio-politics have hindered efficient production and subsequent supply of the medicines to the required regions. As iterated, “international response to HIV/AIDS should be regarded as a bio security intervention” (Ingram 2010, p. 293). The most affected areas have been the developing countries that still do not have the ability to produce their own medicine. Greenhalgh and Wessley (2004) support the use of medicine as a success in addressing the disease (p. 200). Webb and Quennerstedt (2010), argues that there is need for health surveillance by both the government and individuals (p. 785). As if that is not enough the expenses incurred in importing the medicine is still very high and furthermore increases the price of the medicine. In most developing countries, there have been reported instances of counterfeit antiretroviral medicines finding their way into the market. In response to counterfeit, Dodier (2005) encourages ethics in supply of medicine (p. 286). Furthermore, the cases of counterfeit antiretroviral medicines have been reported mainly in the African continent where there is prevalence of HIV and AIDS infections. This explains why it has been very difficult to fight the disease in Sub Saharan Africa. There have been reports of embezzlement of funds meant for the buying of the antiretroviral medicines in Africa. This has forced the donor countries to withdraw their funding for some time. The HIV and AIDS is not a disease that one will leave to treat tomorrow. The days spent without taking the medicine bears great consequences to the patients. Therefore, the actions that could lead to the donor withdrawal even for some time should be avoided. Counterfeit medicine distribution should be discouraged to avoid complication arising from those counterfeit medicines.
In most of the developing countries, there has been very little investment in the research concerning the prevalence of the HIV and AIDS disease. It has taken a long time for the governments involved to take action as far as intervention measures are concerned. This came as a major blow since the communities involved had already loosed a substantial number of individuals from their communities. Very little has been done concerning the research geared the research geared towards finding medication to the HIV and AIDS complications. Even the current antiretroviral medicine that is in use in most countries to lengthen the lifespan of the affected individuals is only imported from other countries. The developing countries should be encouraged to participate actively in finding the vaccine and the cure for the disease since they are the most hit by the effects of the disease as per the state now.
Denial and defiance
It took a long time for most of the countries and communities to accept the existence of the HIV and AIDS disease within their society. Many leaders have been on the forefront to deny the fact that there exists HIV and AIDS within their communities. With more than two thirds of the total world’s population infected with the HIV and AIDS emanating from Sub Sahara Africa. Most of the leaders who have denied the existence of the HIV and AIDS come from this region: the African continent. These leaders have included the likes of the president of Uganda, Yoweri Museveni, former president of South Africa, Thambo Mbeki, and former South African minister, Tshabalala- Msimang. Mr. Mbeki and Mshabalala argued that the so-called HIV and AIDS disease is not a serious case. It can be easily treated using beetroots and garlic. The Ugandan sitting president, Yoweri Museveni has denied completely the existence of the HIV and AIDS disease in his country Uganda. With such kind of arguments, it becomes very difficult for the concerned parties to assist in the fight against the disease. Support from other government such is Australia, Canada, the U.S, and the U.K, through promotion of health strategies has assisted in easing the effects (Fullgar & Harrington 2009, p. 196). Instead of the leaders been in the forefront in educating the people about the dangers of the disease, they are instead leading the campaigns denying the existence of the disease. Uganda is one of the countries in the African continent that have been reported to be hard hit by the HIV and AIDS disease. Furthermore, its leaders should come out strongly and address the issue. If not the whole, community will suffer the consequences of the disease.
The defiance of most leaders concerning the realities of the HIV and AIDS disease has come out as a letdown towards the efforts to combat the effects of HIV and AIDS. The defiance by the leaders has restricted the donor societies from extending their helping hand towards the affected communities. The leaders who have come out and declared HIV and AIDS a national disaster have been able to attract the contribution from the international donor communities who have come in to fund them as far as medical provision is concerned.
Civil wars experienced in some countries have come as a letdown to fight against HIV and AIDS pandemic. There have been reports of people involved in civil wars, forcefully taking young girls and converting them into their instruments of sexual satisfaction during the war. This has occurred without minding about the outcome of their actions. Many women have ended up as sacrificial lambs in these instances. Many have been diagnosed with HIV and AIDS after being taken and converted through these circumstances. During civil war, there are many cases of rape. This has increased the spread of HIV and AIDS since most of individuals who carry out these acts are infected with HIV and AIDS. The prevalence of HIV and AIDS in war torn areas is very high. The prevalence of war affects the political stability of a nation hence affecting the provision of basic requirements to the society. This has played a big role in hampering the “efforts required in the fight against HIV and AIDS” (Kamradt-Scott 2012, p. 97).
HIV/AIDS Response and Funding
The response to HIV and AIDS by most countries especially the developing nations has been hampered by the in availability of funds to run the program. The response as far as medication is concerned has gone well in countries that are developed with scientific advancement; the countries have been able to fund their initiatives in producing their own antiretroviral drugs. Chirimuuta (1987) gives support for the intervention by the western (p. 124). However, even in the developed world this has not gone without the opposition from the leaders. Take for instance the example of United States senator Jesse Helms in 80’s and 90’s who opposed the funding of the HIV and AIDS related programs. Rahaman, Neu, and Everest (2010) encourage cooperation between government and NGOs in fight against AIDS (p 1093). The war has to be a collective bargaining: “we cannot clearly assign an individual to one population or another” (Kelly 2010, p. 6). What could happen if the funding was to go a long way in helping individuals from other counties especially in Africa? African nations that are feeling the pinch of the effects of HIV and AIDS cannot be left to stand on their own. They majorly depend on the donor funding all the way from testing individuals and establishing the group that is infected, to provision of the antiretroviral medication. Cohen (1996) argues that there should be a collective action in dealing with HIV (p. 6). The funding even includes research on the areas and groups badly affected. Donor funding is thus crucial as far as this project is concerned. The developed countries have gone ahead to ensure this is achieved, and with no doubt, these have supported the funding of these particular initiatives in all angles.
Leaving alone opposition of senator Jesse Helms, most leaders from the developed nations have actually taken the initiative of ensuring that their own countries comes up with policies that encourage and stimulates the idea of funding the prevalently badly hit countries especially those in the Sub Sahara region. Setting up of VIHsibilite project was to create social environment for people living with HIV/AIDS (Mensah, Waugh, Lavoie, Dumas, Bernier, Gorneau, Giroux, & Otis 2008, p 596). The setting up of Victorian council in Melbourne to act as a community based AIDS service organization is a step in the right direction (Dowsett 2003, p. 122). Most of the countries in the Sub Sahara region are third world countries and therefore cannot stand on their own as far as funding for the HIV and AIDS initiative is concerned. An example worth noting is the fact that the United States senate passed a $ 50 billion AIDS initiative. In addition, the senate passed a legislation that seeks to set up AIDS treatment and prevention efforts in Africa, Asia and elsewhere where the disease ought to affect the individuals. The establishment of National AIDS Control Programs in developing countries has been very crucial (Mkandawire, Luginaah, & Bezner-kerr 2011, p. 81). This is necessitated by the regular interaction of individuals from different continents. Japan in its effort to assist in the fight against the disease, have pledged to offer $560 million to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and malaria in Africa primarily. This kind of initiatives is a good footing in the right direction in the war against the menace of HIV and AIDS. With these efforts and good will, the world will be able to counter the menace. There has been a problem especially with the developing countries as far as the issue of the embezzlement of the funds is concerned. Many
In conclusion, the issues concerning HIIV and AIDS especially in the developing countries have been hampered by the negative notion held by the communities involved. The society, culture and sexuality have played a bigger role in promoting the infection of HIV and AIDS among the communities. Many communities who have remained clinging on their culture about sexuality and family life are still suffering up to date. The myth held by many communities has denied the truth about the infection of HIV and AIDS and has promoted the tendencies of stigmatization in the society. The use of condom has been discouraged as it indicates lack of trust (Knox et al 2010, p. 661). Poverty, lifestyle, denial, religion and other practises have hampered the efforts involved in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Lambert and Wood (2005) encourage peer communication as a way of dealing with HIV (p. 538). With contribution from the developed counties, the future that involves the fight against HIV and AIDS seems to be bright.
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