Friday, March 20, 2009

Pope's condom comments are "dangerous and irresponsible"

Such outrageous comments are not appropriate coming from the highest office in the hierarchy of the Catholic Church.

20 March 2009 (Geneva, Switzerland) - Pope Benedict XVI ‘s comments on the role that condoms play in preventing the further spread of HIV are irresponsible and dangerous, says Julio Montaner, President of the International AIDS Society (IAS).

On March 17, 2009, while traveling to Cameroon, the Pope addressed the media, calling AIDS “a tragedy that cannot be overcome by money alone, that cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms, which can even increase the problem”. This is the first time that Pope Benedict has directly spoken out against the use of condoms. While the historic stance of the Roman Catholic Church against contraception use is widely known, Benedict’s predecessor John Paul II never spoke out publicly against the use of condoms to prevent HIV infection.

“There is not a shred of evidence to suggest that condoms can increase HIV transmission – absolutely the contrary,” said Dr. Montaner. “Male and female condoms, used correctly and consistently, can reduce the risk of sexual transmission of HIV by 80-90 percent.”

IAS Executive Director Craig McClure further condemned the Pope’s remarks. “This is the first trip to Africa by Pope Benedict, a continent that has been ravaged by AIDS. As of 2006, according to the Vatican, over 17% of the total African population practices Catholicism. The numbers are growing each year. Catholics throughout Africa rely on the spiritual guidance of the Pope. To suggest that condom use contributes to the HIV problem is not merely contrary to scientific evidence and global consensus, it contributes to fueling HIV infection and its consequences - sickness and death. Such outrageous comments are not appropriate coming from the highest office in the hierarchy of the Catholic Church.”

Dr. Montaner added, “While condoms are not the only solution to combating HIV, they are a critical, cheap and cost-effective element of a comprehensive approach to HIV prevention. Instead of spreading ignorance, the Pope should use his global position of leadership to encourage young people, who are our future, to protect themselves and others from HIV infection using all the tools we have at our disposal, including condoms. His remarks are insulting to the tireless efforts of committed scientific, public health and human rights leaders around the world to protect the poorest of the poor from HIV infection.”


The IAS is the world’s leading association of HIV professionals, with more than 13,000 members from 188 countries working at all levels of the global response to HIV/AIDS. IAS members represent scientists, clinicians, public health and community practitioners on the frontlines of the epidemic. The IAS is the lead organizer of the biennial International AIDS Conference and the IAS Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention, which will be held in Cape Town, South Africa in July 2009.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

select key words

2007 National HIV Prevention Conference 2009 National LGBTI Health Summit 2011 LGBTI Health Summit 2012 Gay Men's Health Summit 2012 International AIDS Conference abstinence only ACT Up activism advocacy Africa african-american aging issues AIDS AIDS Foundation of Chicago anal cancer anal carcinoma anal health anal sex andrew's anus athlete ball scene bareback porn barebacking bathhouses bears big bold and beautiful Bisexual Bisexual Health Summit bisexuality black gay men black msm blood ban blood donor body image bottom Brian Mustanski BUTT Center on Halsted Charles Stephens Chicago Chicago Black Gay Men's Caucus Chicago Task Force on LGBT Substance Use and Abuse Chris Bartlett chubby chaser circumcision civil rights civil union Coaching with Jake communication community organizing condoms Congress crystal meth dating dating and mating with alan irgang David Halperin David Munar depression disclosure discrimination domestic violence don't ask don't tell douche downlow Dr. James Holsinger Dr. Jesus Ramirez-Valles Dr. Rafael Diaz Dr. Ron Stall drag queen Ed Negron emotional health ENDA Eric Rofes exercise Feast of Fun Feel the love... female condom fitness Friday is for Faeries FTM gay culture gay identity gay latino gay male sex gay marriage gay men gay men of color gay men's health Gay Men's Health Summit 2010 gay pride gay rights gay rugby gay sex gay youth gender harm reduction hate crime HCV health care health care reform health insurance hepatitis C HIV HIV care HIV drugs HIV negative HIV positive HIV prevention HIV stigma HIV strategic plan HIV testing hiv vaccine HIV/AIDS homophobia homosexuality hottie hotties how are you healthy? Howard Brown Health Center HPV human rights humor hunk Illinois IML immigration International AIDS Conference international mr. leather internet intimacy IRMA Jim Pickett leather community leathersex Leon Liberman LGBT LGBT adoption LGBT culture LGBT health LGBT rights LGBT seniors LGBT youth LGBTI community LGBTI culture LGBTI health LGBTI rights LGBTI spirituality LGV LifeLube LifeLube forum LifeLube poll LifeLube subscription lifelube survey Lorenzo Herrera y Lozano love lube lubricant Lymphogranuloma Venereum masturbation mental health microbicides middle Monday Morning Perk-Up MRSA MSM music National AIDS Strategy National Gay Men's Health Summit negotiated safety nutrition One Fey's Tale oral sex Peter Pointers physical health Pistol Pete pleasure PnP podcast policy politics poppers porn post-exposure prophylaxis PrEP President Barack Obama Presidential Campaign prevention Project CRYSP prostate prostate cancer public health public sex venues queer identity racism Radical Faerie recovery rectal microbicides relationships religion research safe sex semen Senator Barack Obama sero-adaptation sero-sorting seroguessing sex sexual abuse sexual addiction sexual health sexual orientation Sister Glo Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence smoking social marketing spirituality STD stigma stonewall riots substance abuse treatment substance use suicide super-bug superinfection Susan Kingston Swiss declaration syphilis Ted Kerr Test Positive Aware Network testicle self-examination testicular cancer testing The "Work-In" The 2009 Gay Men's Health Agenda Tony Valenzuela top Trans and Intersex Association trans group blog Trans Gynecology Access Program transgender transgender day of remembrance transgendered transmen transphobia transsexual Trevor Hoppe universal health care unsafe sex vaccines video violence viral load Who's That Queer Woof Wednesday writers yoga You Tube youtube