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AIDS or Aids, Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, is a collection of symptoms and infections in humans resulting from the specific damage to the immune system caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).


  • In the end one cannot avoid the conclusion that AIDS unites certain human themes — homosexuality, sexual disease, and death — about which society actively resists enlightenment. These are things that we are unwilling to address or even think about. We don't want to understand them. We would rather fear them.
    • Martin Amis, "Making Sense of AIDS" (1985), in The Moronic Inferno and Other Visits to America (1986).
  • When AIDS was at its most brutal, frightening, my-God-what-are-we-going-to-do era, that was when vampire stories and stories about blood and trust swept the literary world.
  • As individual and unpredictable as this illness seems to be, the one thing I found I could say with certainty was this: AIDS makes things more intensely what they already are.
  • I’ve made three documentary films on subject of AIDS in Africa. My particular love is the country of Uganda, it’s one of the countries that I love most in the world. There was a period when Uganda had the worst incidence of HIV/AIDS in the world. But through an amazing initiative called ABC: Abstinence, Be faithful, Correct use of condoms... Those three – I am not denying that abstinence is a very good way of not getting AIDS, it really is, it works. So does being faithful, but so do condoms! And do not deny it! And this Pope not satisfied with saying: “Condoms are against our religion. Please consider first abstinence, second being faithful to your partner,” he spreads that lie that condoms actually increase the incidence of AIDS. He actually makes sure that aid is conditional on saying “no” to condoms. I have been to – there is a hospital in Bwindi in the west of Uganda where I do quite a lot of work – it is unbelievable, the pain and suffering you see.
    • Stephen Fry Abridged Intelligence² debate speech: "The Catholic church is a force for good in the world", November 7th 2009[1]
  • On December 22,1986, finding I was body positive, I set myself a target: I would disclose my secret and survive Margaret Thatcher. I did. Now I have set my sights on the millennium and a world where we are all equal.
  • … condoms are about as effective against AIDS as a twenty-four-chamber gun instead of a six-chamber gun when playing Russian roulette.
  • Since the mid-1970s, more than 30 new diseases have emerged, including AIDS, Ebola, Lyme disease and SARS. Most of these are believed to have moved from wildlife to human populations.
    • Mary Pearl president of the Wildlife Trust in a Newsweek magazine interview. Awake! magazine, article: Will Science Cure the World?, January 2007.
  • We owe it to Ryan to make sure that the fear and ignorance that chased him from his home and his school will be eliminated. We owe it to Ryan to open our hearts and our minds to those with AIDS. We owe it to Ryan to be compassionate, caring and tolerant toward those with AIDS, their families and friends. It's the disease that's frightening, not the people who have it.
    • Ronald Reagan, (January 11, 1990). "We Owe It to Ryan". The Washington Post.

—Former U.S. President Ronald Reagan, April 11, 1990

  • There are many who wish to believe that premarital sex causes venereal diseases, that homosexuality causes AIDS... This is simply not true; infectious diseases are caused by infectious agents.
    • P. Skrabanek, "Preventive Medicine and Morality," Lancet 1 (8473)(1986): 143.
  • All that is required of us, in our "new sexual ethic," is that we have sex in a way that favours us more than it favours our diseases.
    • Richard Summerbell, Body Politic, June 1983 (reported in Ann Silversides, AIDS activist: Michael Lynch and the Politics of Community (2003), p. 32).

  • ..."That disease he has does an awful job on you. Your lungs fill up."
"Well, he should have kept his penis out of other men's bottoms then," Janice says, lowering her voice though, so the nurses and orderlies in the hall don't hear.
John Updike, "Rabbit at Rest" (1990)

  • You want to know why I don't have AIDS, why I'm not HIV-positive like so many other people? I don't fuck around. It's as simple as that.
Kurt Vonnegut, "Timequake" (1997) (p.43)

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