Earlier this week I posted a blurb about fellow blogger Bernie Tarver’s blog on the Chicago Department of Public Health’s newly released report on the latest rate of syphilis and HIV infections.
Apparently, the report was a follow-up to an investigation they conducted into the unsafe sexual practices conducted by FlavaWorks, operators of the Internet website CocoDorm.com, where young gay Black and Latin men engage in sexual acts for the enjoyment of viewers who pay a membership fee to watch.
Well tonight in South Florida on NBC 6, reporter Jeff Burnside will discuss a house in a neighborhood that features Black and Latino men who have sex with men for money (Click here for the preview).
Also, since posting my initial blog on the Chicago Department of Public Heath’s report, the powers at be over at Flavaworks have begun to try and legally make me remove the information and from what I hear, they’re doing it to everyone who references the report and Flavaworks.
I know people, even here in Los Angeles, that throw sex parties for men. These parties are highly attended and often involve unsafe sex. The people that give these parties are very much involved in the community and do support financially, but at the same time I have issues with them because I know like they know that HIV and AIDS is still very much an issue for the Black gay male community.
When we look at HIV and AIDS in our community, we also have to look at the role that we play in it as well. These parties and the South Florida houses of the world, are just as much to blame in the spreading of HIV in our community as is the government’s lack of adequate funding for prevention efforts.
There’s a lot of money to be made in sex, and gay male sex at that. But what’s the cost? Our lives? And I am posing the question because like I said, I know people who thrown these types of parties here in Los Angeles and while I have never gone, friends of mine have and it bothers me because they’re playing Russian Roulette.
I suspect that like with the down low, the South Florida story tonight may spark a national discussion on the sexual practices of gay men, and we will be right smack dab in the middle of it. And like with the down low, it will get labeled as a Black thing, when we all know that bath houses from here to Japan, cater to white gay men among others.
Since I posted the above story on the pending legal issues of Flavaworks Entertainment, I along with fellow bloggers Jasmyne Cannick, Bernie Tarver, and C. Baptiste Williams have become a target for attack by the staff at CocoDorm. At the time of my post I simply cut and pasted Jasmyne's commentary because I found it to be interesting and honestly dead on. I hadn't really formulated an opinion but I felt it was newsworthy and would definitely affect our community negatively at some point.
Let's get one thing straight. If the models at CocoDorm are having unsafe sex and the management is profiting off of this, the argument that it doesn't affect anyone else because the individuals are adults is bullshit! We are all aware that new HIV/AIDS infections are out of control in our community, and when a person is infected it not only affects the individual but the people who love them as well.
This is not about denying the staff at CocoDorm the right to run their porn business, but it's about holding people accountable for putting our Black brothers at risk. It's obvious that at the end of the day this entire operation is about money. I could care less about the "business" aspect of Coco Dorm, my concern is about the health of the models and the negative images that will be displayed over the next few days to the public that will cause a major backlash on our community.
We are constantly fighting to tell our stories and to have positive representation of our lives in the media and this is what my mother will get to see when she turns on the evening news. The men of Coco Dorm in no way represent what I stand for and I'm appauled that they've taken it upon themselves to attack those within the community who work to lift us up and not tear us down.
They've already threatened and failed to shut down Jasmyne and Bernie's blog, so I guess I'm next on the list to receive an e-mail or a phone call. I hope they know I'm not moved.
The saga continues here .