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13 comments | Tuesday, June 30, 2009




A troubling report from Science Daily on why the HIV infection rates in black gay men are continuing to spiral out of control and why our community may not see a change in the trend for some time.


Black gay men have less choice when it comes to sexual partners than other groups and, as a result, their sexual networks are closely knit leading to the rapid spread of HIV.


In a study looking at social and sexual mixing between ethnic groups in men who have sex with men, H. Fisher Raymond and Willi McFarland, from the San Francisco Department of Public Health found that social barriers faced by black gay men may have a serious impact on their health and well-being.


A total of 1,142 gay men took part in computer-assisted interviews. They were asked about their own ethnicity, the race of their sexual partners in the last six months, their perception of how easy it is to meet sexual partners of different ethnicities, where they meet sexual partners, their view of HIV infection risk and the predominant race of their network of friends.


The researchers found that Black gay men are the least preferred of sexual partners by other races. Black men are perceived to be riskier to have sex with, which can lead to men of other races avoiding Black men as sexual partners. They are also perceived as less welcome in the common social venues of gay men in San Francisco. As a result, Black men are three times more likely to have sexual partners that are also Black, than would be expected by chance alone.


In the authors’ view, the combination of attitudes on the part of non-Black gay men, friendships and social networks that are less likely to include Blacks, and the environments found in gay venues serve to separate Black gay men from other groups. Consequently, the sexual networks of Blacks are pushed to be more highly interconnected than other groups, with the potential for a more rapid spread of HIV and a higher sustained prevalence of infection among Black gay men.


The authors conclude: “The racial disparity in HIV observed for more than a decade will not disappear until the challenges posed by a legacy of racism towards Blacks in the US are addressed.”


Do you agree with the researcher's findings? Do black gay men really have less choices when it comes to sexual partners? Or is this study out of touch with the reality of mixed neighborhoods outside of the heavily populated white gay Castro district of San Francisco?


Get into a related discussion by a group of black gay men on this issue filmed at the NY LGBT Center below:


13 Comments:

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I think it holds some truth. Black people are already a minority within this country. And black gay people are an even smaller minority. So the odds that you will mess with someone who has messed with someone are high.

Sigh anytime I hear HIV news it just saddens me. It's like black men can't win for losing. They tell us to use protection and then come out with a new report everyday telling us we are the most likely to catch HIV POINT BLANK PERIOD. Its like there is nothing we can do to protect ourselves from getting infected.

Whats the solution? Avoid physical contact with men (and other human beings) PERIOD? Everyone just masturbate? I feel like thats the only solution.

June 30, 2009 9:55 AM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Blacks aren't able to meet whites. What kind of mess is this? Why would they want to? Im black and only deal with other blacks because Im into my own. I use a condom EVERY time I have sex with a man...period. Why would someone go RAW with a white or asian guy because he thinks his chances of getting HIV are less? Every time I go to white gay bars in Manhattan (which is not often), white men are all over me. Go on Adam4Adam.com. White men are begging black men for sex on that site.

This must be a San Francisco Castro District thing. This report makes no sense.

June 30, 2009 10:18 AM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

The article made complete sense, and revealed the truth about its focus, San Francisco's gay community. I don't know if I agree with the racial disparity piece though. It sounds as if the researcher is saying that until Black gay men go outside of their circles and fraternize with the white gay communities, the rate of infection in the Black gay communities will always be an alarming issue. AIDS/HIV is prevalent in the white gay community also, so the grass really isn't that much greener on the other side.

June 30, 2009 10:47 AM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

This article makes it sound like black gay men have no sexual options besides black men.

That may be true in San Francisco, but in many places I see people specifically looking for black men.

I suspect the people in this survey may be the type of black gay men who are insulated/isolated from a large social network. If you hang in the "black gay ghetto" then your likelihood of catching something may very well be increased.

June 30, 2009 2:18 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

No, I don't agree!!! This report makes Black men
choosing other Black men, seem like its some last
resort option because no other race wants us.
BULLSHIT!!!! There ARE some Black men who
date/relate to other Black men, because they
w-a-n-t to, because they prefer other MOC, to being
with nonBlack men. As for the other races not
wanting "us", why are we sooooo often the objects
of their lustful fantasies, and whatnot, then?
Racism still persists though, that while they might
not want to take us home to meet "Mom", those
same nonBlacks have no qualms about taking us
to meet their bedsheets!
Diseases are spreading because of risky behaviors.
Whites are getting HIV a-l-s-o, but to read/hear
all the reports, its as if Whites have built up some
sort of magical immunity to HIV, while we poor,
downtrodden, Black men, are dropping like flies.
These reports are being slanted.....

June 30, 2009 3:16 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Darian, thank you for posting this. For me this is very accurate from my experiences. I live near SF and I always feel that I am least desired in the gay community around me. Caucasian and Asian men are most desired while black men are shuffled to the side. Dating within in my race has always been easier but dating outside of my race is very challenging. Stereotypes are still rampant and many cultures still believe in them. I am VERY educated however am always overlooked for Asian and Caucasian men.
But at the same time all my black gay male friends don’t desire to date outside of their race. I have always desired to date outside of my race do to me being really cultured. But again, it is a struggle.

July 01, 2009 1:27 AM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I saw a lot of brothers running after white men the last time I visited San Francisco.

You don't see a lot of that in Atlanta or DC. There is a higher level of black consciousness in those cities.

Blacks in San Franciso and California in general are kinda backwards.

July 01, 2009 1:21 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I don't live in, nor have I ever been to San Francisco so I can't comment on what might be going on out there. However, my experience of black gay life and culture here in NYC does lend some truth to there being a great deal of racial segregation within the entire community. From what I've seen it looks as if most blacks perfer to date within their own race by choice and whites would be open to the idea if it were possible. I definitely do not believe that blacks have any fewer choices of sexual partners because of social status and stigmas. If anything, it would be because blacks choose to live in a box and place limitations on themselves. It's also my opinion that both races are equally superficial and shallow and that the most attractive males of any race are the ones who will have their pick of the litter here in NYC.

July 01, 2009 4:41 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Darian, thank you for posting this. For me this is very accurate from my experiences. I live near SF and I always feel that I am least desired in the gay community around me. Caucasian and Asian men are most desired while black men are shuffled to the side. Dating within in my race has always been easier but dating outside of my race is very challenging. Stereotypes are still rampant and many cultures still believe in them. I am VERY educated however am always overlooked for Asian and Caucasian men.
But at the same time all my black gay male friends don’t desire to date outside of their race. I have always desired to date outside of my race do to me being really cultured. But again, it is a struggle.
=======

Hmmmm, maybe its just me, but I think its QUITE telling that the person who posted what I've copied above chose to remain "anonymous".
To this Brotha, I say:
Please go back and reread what you
wrote. You have "always desired" to date outside of your race, because you are "really cultured".
So, are we to surmise that there is
no culture to be found among other
men of color? You, pray tell, are
the sole one??? Huh, Booboo? Are
you implying that those lovely White guys that you desperate seek
always have culture and class oozing from their pores? Hmmm, is your own kind not good enough for you, so you continue to look elsewhere, though you are overlooked for Asian and Caucasian
men....even though you are VERY educated? Why, do you want some
group of men, if they hold you in
such disdain? Would getting one of them be some sort of "accomplishment"...would it make
you feel like a worthy Negro? Maybe its time we, as Black men, start admiring/desiring/perspiring over each other! We are just as good, if not better, than anyone
else. Being with another Black man
s-h-o-u-l-d be just as much of a
sense of pride/achievement, and if
it isn't, perhaps you need to check
Self, and ask w-h-y it isn't.

However, I wish you luck with your
quest. I'd bet good money if you do get some White guy, he will be some so-so looking mofo that no
other White guy would even look at
twice. That seems to be what most
interracial SGL couples look like:
Shemar Moore lookalikes all hugged
up with Clay Aiken clones.

Ahhhhh, true love indeed!

July 01, 2009 8:51 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Wow, according to this article if you are a black gay man you might as well kill yourself NOW.

Well, here is a novel concept...Maybe some of us actually PREFER other black men? I've nothing against white men (I've dated a couple); however, overwhelmingly I do have a preference for black men.

The bottom line here is that ALL gay men should be practicing safer sex. All this article is going to do is create an explosion of HIV/AIDS related cases amongst whites because they think, "Well I don't fuck blacks so I won't catch it."

Be that as it may...I will NEVER live in sanfrancisco.

July 02, 2009 1:31 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

"All this article is going to do is create an explosion of HIV/AIDS related cases amongst whites because they think, "Well I don't fuck blacks so I won't catch it.""

I am old enough to remember back in the 1980s when black gay guys who should have known better used to say "Well, I don't fuck white guys so I won't catch it". And look what we have today.

Toddy English is absolutely correct - gay men of ALL races should use protection when they have sex.

July 03, 2009 1:48 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Well, that might be true for the guys who participated in that survey but not for everyone, I am Latin, and I love Black men, I just can't understand why someone wouldn't find Black men attractive. Most of my sexual partners have been Black but there's a lot of racist gay guys out there, In Craigslist's for example a lot of guys say No Blacks or something like that, but whatever, I have more Black guys for myself if they don't like them lol

April 16, 2010 8:03 PM

 
<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I haven't been able to sustain anything with any of the races. Everything is geared for some temporary ,disease passing Hook-Up and then you are discarded for another.That's seems to be gay life,and i'm not joking.It's real sad that you don't seem to be able to find much worthwhile or lasting.Everything is some revolving dead end porn film with multiple Hook-Up's.

October 27, 2011 7:06 AM

 

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