Recently I was reading the blog of my good friend Jonathan and I came across a very personal post about his appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show as a black SGL man living with HIV and his appearance in an adult movie that was filmed in 2002.
I consider myself to be very fortunate to call him a friend and we've had numerous conversations about these two controversial appearances.
While many people like to speculate on how Jonathan contracted HIV and gossip about his sexual past and present, I applaud him for being brave enough to disclose his status not only to his sexual partners but to the world.
In an effort to pay his college tuition to complete his degree, Jonathan starred in an adult film in 2002, that now threatens to undermine his work in HIV/AIDS prevention and at times is a direct attack on his character and integrity.
So often we get caught up in the public persona of people we see on tv and we fail to realize that the person we're watching is a human being that bleeds red blood, cries when they're sad, laughs when they're happy, and are affected by the stones that people throw just like the next man.
Sometimes I wish Jonathan wasn't so transparent with everyone, it's not easy watching my friend in pain as a result of what some uninformed idiot has said regarding his HIV status. But just think about how low the HIV transmission rates would be if everyone disclosed their status or just got tested for starters?
We do not always agree on everything, but there is one thing that we will always have in common, a friendship that exemplifies the true meaning of unconditional love.
Jonathan you're my Judy! Remember even Jesus Christ was persecuted and look at his impact on the world.