Justin's HIV Journal

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Pozitive Union: Justin B Smith and Dr. Philip B Terry Elope

When I found out I was HIV positive I felt that I would never be wanted physically, emotionally, mentally or spiritually. 3 years ago I met a man the way that a lot of you have met men, at a bar. I noticed his smile, his swagger, and his sexiness. I didn’t know what to do with myself, except I knew I had to be honest with him about a part of me that I knew I couldn’t keep secret, my HIV status.

Being HIV positive a lot of us have low self esteem about if we will ever be wanted. I’m here to tell you that there is light at the end of the tunnel. There WILL BE someone for you, even if you aren’t HIV positive.

I have truly found someone that loves my unconditionally. Through all my trial and tribulations he has been there to help me through the rough waters we call life. Philip asked me to marry him on Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend of 2009. When he asked I didn’t know what to say, so I looked inside my heart and open my mouth and joyously said, “Yes”.

Ever since then we’ve had disagreements like most couples but it never took away from the love that I have and will always have for him. This man has breathed life into me, my heart, my soul and my mind. When I didn’t want to be loved; he opened my heart, when I didn’t want to have a spiritual awakening; he opened my soul and when I didn’t want to go to school; he opened my mind, when I didn’t want to love.

I can honestly say that all I want is for him to be happy and that makes me happy to be with him. Being HIV positive has nothing to do with who you love. It might change how you love but love will always be there and will be there much longer than you and I. Love conquers all, even HIV.

I love you Philip, thank you for doing me the honor of asking me to marry you. For eternity and the life after I am forever yours.

Love Always,
Justin B Smith
Mr. Silly Butt

P.S. to all those reading this sorry about the noisy background it was very windy at the beach in Provincetown that day 

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Justin's HIV Journal: U.S. HIV Travel Ban & Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger

President Barack Obama’s administration has taken the first step to lift the ban on travel to the U.S. by HIV positive individuals.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) stated on its website last week that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) could move forward with steps to change a regulation that has restricted HIV-positive people from gaining entrance into the United States.

It’s it required for immigrants to be tested for HIV and under the present regulation immigrants have to be granted a waiver by the Department of Homeland Security to be able to travel to the United States.

Congress passed the policy change last summer and President George W. Bush signed it into law, but the Bush administration was unable to implement the shift before leaving office.


When the HHS publishes the new regulation in the federal register a 45-day window will be opened so that the HHS may make adjustments to the proposal and send it back to OMB for budgetary approval.

Could it take any longer?! but alas we’re not done yet!
After OMB approves the regulation, HHS will again enter the change into the federal registry for another 30 or 60 day review period, and then it will automatically go into effect. Congress can try to block the change in the 30 or 60 day review period.


Arnold Schwarzenegger, Governor of California thinks that since California is going bankrupt that he has the right to cut welfare for children and AIDS Prevention funding for the state.

California may not be going bankrupt but they are facing some major budget deficits that may be contributed to the allegation of the governor violating the system of checks and balances outlined in the state’s constitution.

The California Governor has cut the noses of HIV Activist spite our faces. HIV/AIDS Prevention programs are needed to help stop HIV infections through out the state.

Think about this, Safer Sex kits can fall under Preventions programs. When people, especially poor people, need to go get free safer safe kits, which have condoms for male/females and lube where are they suppose to go? Also, Needle Exchange Programs can fall under HIV/AIDS Prevention, depending on the state. Needle Exchange Program help stop the spread of HIV/AIDS ANYWHERE.

All in all, the US HIV Travel Ban, HIV/AIDS Prevention and Child Welfare cuts are just plain wrong. There needs to be a better plan on what to do about California’s budget and the United States’ Government attitude towards people who are HIV positive. We need to erase the HIV stigma and stop being afraid of something there is no need to be afraid of. Maybe we should be afraid of Governor’s who think they’re Emperors, that think they have the right to indirectly kill people.