Martin Luther King Jr. Would Have Championed HIV/AIDS Fight, Opinion Piece Says
Although HIV/AIDS was not known during his lifetime, "no single problem would demand more" of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s attention than the HIV/AIDS epidemic if he were alive today, Rev. Raphael Warnock, pastor of the Douglas Memorial Community Church and co-chair of the Baltimore affiliate of the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS, writes in a Baltimore Sun opinion piece. According to Warnock, HIV/AIDS is "a human plague that does not respect race, gender, class, age, sexual orientation or any of the boundaries that divide the human family," and King knew that "no individual or nation can stand out boasting of being independent" because "we are interdependent." Everyone "has a role to play in building what Dr. King called 'the beloved community'" by going "in mass numbers" to get tested for HIV "as a way of encouraging others to do the same and as a means of countering the misinformation and social stigma that can be as deadly as the virus," Warnock writes. Warnock concludes that by "resisting prejudice and putting our bodies in the struggle, we embrace the very heart of the King legacy and appropriately honor" his life (Warnock, Baltimore Sun, 1/20).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.