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Gays And Blood Donation: Sacrificing Public Safety For Political Correctness

Posted on August 5 2010 10:00 pm
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Every so often, there will be some new outrage over the FDA’s policy on receiving blood donations from gay or bisexual men. Their policy is in place to prevent tainted blood donations, something that makes sense to most normal people. But still, some gay rights activists will occasionally realize that gays can’t donate, and they completely lose their minds. Gays only comprise about 1-3% of the American population, but we should apparently put all Americans at risk of receiving tainted blood transfusions so that the tiny minority of gays can feel good about themselves. It’s political correctness at its finest! Who cares if some innocent person gets AIDS and dies? The gays will feel useful, so it’s worth it!

A poster at Feministing is really upset about this “unfair discrimination”. In fact, the way she phrases it, the FDA and the CDC both colluded together in a massive conspiracy to excuse their anti-gay agenda with phony, fake statistics.

So look, FDA– and for that matter the CDC whose published statistics the FDA is using, but yet do not appear to cross-reference other demographic and behavioral risk factors to actually provide a nuanced picture of total risk for infection– get off your homophobic high-horse and stop hiding behind statistics that could blatantly be avoided by asking more than one lousy question that basically amounts to: “Are you gay?”

Well, let’s look at the FDA’s anti-gay conspiracy-theory phony statistics. Men who have had sex with men have an HIV prevalence 60 times higher than the general population, and the HIV prevalence in potential donors with history of male sex with males is 200 times higher than first time blood donors and 2000 times higher than repeat blood donors. Men who have had sex with men are also the largest group of blood donors to be found HIV positive. The FDA acknowledges that they are usually able to catch tainted blood donations, but that there would still be a small but definite increased risk if the policy on homosexual blood donations were reversed. Even if it was only one donation out of a million, there are over 20 million blood transfusions every year. And on top of the risk of infecting people with HIV/AIDS, homosexual men are also at an increased risk for Hepatitis B and C, as well as Human Herpes Virus-8, which can cause cancer.

But apparently, we should assume that all of these statistics aren’t true because a Feministing poster named Heather said so without giving any evidence to back up her point. Are we going to take that kind of a risk just to satisfy some sick idea about political correctness?

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