Recently, the topic of AIDS has been floating around my conversations with several people. From friends, parents, professors and media coverage, AIDS continues to be a topic of great interest, intrigue and panic. It’s hard to believe that a society as advanced as ours has not made the significant advances it had hoped it would with such a lethal syndrome. Even with Bush’s donation of $200 million dollars to the AIDS global fund, statistics show that AIDS is still rapidly growing and the funding isn’t enough.

Though I agree that scientists must continue to find a cure for AIDS, properly educating the world about the disease should slow down the spread.

Is it being done? Supposedly it is, however, the numbers simply don’t match up. Statistically, the number of people infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, increased from 35 million in 2001 to 39.4 million in 2004. This is the largest number of HIV cases in the history of mankind.

Historically, AIDS was considered to be a “gay disease.” It’s time society stops categorizing it as so and begins to address it as an “equal opportunist.” It has spread too far, affecting too many orphaned children, loving spouses, caring families and loyal friends.

Recent reports show that half of adults living with HIV are women. Dangerous sexual practices, as defined by society, no longer span within the homosexual community. Promiscuity within the heterosexual community has led to a steady increase of HIV positive cases on a global scale.

Something that our society fails to address is the fact that today’s youngsters are becoming more sexually active at a younger age. Instead of ignoring the situation, properly educating young people about the health risks of HIV and AIDS is crucial in attempting to reduce STD contracting rates.

Unfortunately, as the world knows, cures for HIV or AIDS have not yet been found. So as medical researchers continue to discover a remedy for AIDS, the rest of the civilized world should take on the duty to raise awareness and inform those who need it the most.

HIV positive people still face discrimination within humanity, leading them not to reveal their health status and further endangering themselves along with others. Compassion and understanding is not present when dealing with HIV positive individuals. People are still afraid to approach ailing AIDS members of our society

More than two decades after its identification, HIV should no longer be viewed as a death sentence. Modern technology and medicines have greatly helped in extending the lives of HIV positive patients.

We must continue finding new and redefined ways to stop the spread of HIV and AIDS. Get tested, know your health status and don’t think of AIDS as a taboo subject, at least for the sake of the human race.

Buitrago can be reached at

Zumba in medicine, the unexpected crossover

Each year at URMC, a new cohort of unsuspecting pediatrics residents get a crash course. “There are no mistakes in Zumba,” Gellin says.

UR Softball continues dominance with sweeps of Alfred University and Ithaca College

The Yellowjackets swept Alfred University on the road Thursday, winning both games by a score of 5–4.

A reality in fiction: the problem of representation

Oftentimes, rather than embracing femininity as part of who they are, these characters only retain traditionally masculine traits.