Justin's HIV Journal

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Justin's HIV Journal: U.S Congress & President Obama Repeal Don't Ask Do...

This video was taken when the Senate voted to repeal the, “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Policy”. That was on Saturday. Today on 12/22/10 President Barack Obama fulfilled a campaign promise that he now repealed DADT.


Don’t’ Ask Don’t Tell is the policy that restricts the United States military from efforts to discover or reveal closeted homosexual or bisexual servicemembers or applicants, while barring those who are openly gay, lesbian, or bisexual from military service.


DADT was introduced by then President Bill Clinton in 1993. At the time in the Department of Defense Directive 1332.14 stated, “that homosexuality is incompatible with military service and persons who engaged in homosexual acts or stated that they are homosexual or bisexual were discharged”

The full name of the policy at the time was "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue." The "Don’t Ask" provision mandates that military or appointed officials will not ask about or require members to reveal their sexual orientation. The "Don’t Tell" states that a member may be discharged for claiming to be a homosexual or bisexual or making a statement indicating a tendency towards or intent to engage in homosexual activities. The "Don’t Pursue" establishes what is minimally required for an investigation to be initiated. A "Don’t Harass" provision was added to the policy later. It ensures that the military will not allow harassment or violence against service members for any reason.

My Opinion:

DADT was total bullshyt. I AM A GAY AIRFORCE VETERAN. I hated not being able to put a rainbow sticker on my car. I’m damn proud of who I was and am. When I was in the military several personnel knew I was gay, and guess what THEY DIDN’T GIVE A RATS @$$. BUT in basic training I was the target of harassment, sexual harassment. In basic training we all had our own beds and one of my jobs was to go past each bed and collect used hangers from each person. There was a particular group of young men that I would have to go past everyday. One of them shouted, “You got a lot of your mother in you, don’t you?” I didn’t know what that meant at all. They continued to snicker as I would walk by everyday. Then one day when I thought everyone left the barracks I had to be there alone cleaning up because I had missed drill, and as punishment I had to clean. Two men from the group previously mentioned came into the barracks and began to taunt me and grope me. I DID NOT LIKE IT. I couldn’t tell anyone about what happened because I was fearful about getting kicked out of the military. It went on for a week and I remained silent.


If I could go back in the military I would.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Justin's HIV Journal: Marriage is STILL an option

When I found out I was HIV positive I wasn’t thinking really about if I was going to ever get married. But just my luck, which was good, I did get married to the most beautiful man in my life, Dr Philip B Terry-Smith. This past summer Phil & I were approached by students at University of Maryland to take part in documentary. The documentary was about marriage and the different kinds of marriages and how they work. The documentary profiles four couples; one couple profiles a heterosexual man and bisexual man, and older couple, a couple which met through internet dating, and gay couple (us). The documentary shows that there are differences and similarities, but also shows that there shouldn’t be a “cookie cutter” of what marriage should be.

The couples in the documentary have a lot of differences like one couple is wise. They have an experience that none of the other couples have and that is time. They have seen things that none of us will see or have to see because they were raised in a different time. One of the other couples is a man and woman who have foster children and they have a lot of love. Their story was so interesting and you can see that they have a lot of love between them and their children. Another couple is a young couple that met on an online dating service. They are very different and seem to take life as it goes which seems to work for them just fine. Then there is my husband and I and well, I don’t know, take a look at the video and there you can see how we met and how we work.

On a traditional marriage in America you have a man and a woman, but in my opinion I don’t have a traditional marriage and I don’t have to and I don’t want one. The only people that define my marriage are me and my husband (the people that are in it). There are people in this world that constantly say that same-sex marriage is not right. They constantly use the Bible as their defense on why same-sex marriage is against god. But whose God are they talking about? They are certainly not talking about my God. My husband and I are not Christians and it seems to be okay with our Gods that we are married. We just want equal protections under the law that heterosexuals take for granted.

I ALSO want to state that just because you are HIV positive doesn’t mean you will never get married. Do not give up on love and it will not give up on you. Love will happen eventually sometimes it take 2 hours, 2 days, 2 months, 2 or 2 years. I’m very optimistic when it comes to love because it is and always will be the most powerful thing in the world. Love has started and stopped wars and so it is my belief that love will last forever even if only in one’s heart.

Well take a look at the documentary and I hope you all like it

Friday, December 10, 2010

Justin's HIV Journal: HIV/AIDS Questions & Answers from George Mason Uni...

Justin's HIV Journal: HIV/AIDS Questions & Answers from George Mason U Students

Hello everyone

Another World AIDS Day has come and gone. This year was a little different for me. I was actually asked to speak at George Mason University about HIV/AIDS. I was soooo scared about speaking in front of them. I must admit it had been a long time since I had spoken at a college. So before I made my way to George Mason University I had many thoughts going through my head. I had hoped the students would like me and most of all listen to me. So in the car on the way there I had made notes, my husband said, “Don’t worry about it, you’re a natural. You will do fine”. Well I’m a skeptic on some things so I didn’t believe it.

I have always enjoyed speaking at schools. I had always told myself that I wouldn’t turn a school away unless it interfered with my 9-5 job. Speaking at George Mason University revitalized the energy that I needed to speak at colleges again.

One of the most rewarding things from speaking at George Mason was the students. Relating to them and their energy was an awesome feeling. I was only really supposed to speak for about 1 hour and I ended up speaking for about 2 hours. It was so amazing that I didn’t want to stop speaking to the students.

Justin's HIV Journal World AIDS Day 2010 George Mason U Part I

Justin's HIV Journal World AIDS Day 2010 George Mason U Part I

Justin's HIV Journal World AIDS Day 2010 George Mason U Part II

Justin's HIV Journal World AIDS Day 2010 George Mason U Part II

Justin's HIV Journal World AIDS Day 2010 George Mason U Part III

Justin's HIV Journal World AIDS Day 2010 George Mason U Part III