Yesterday, I watched the ESPN 30 for 30 documentary called the Announcement. The film was about the 1991 announcement by Irving “Magic” Johnson about his positive HIV diagnosis.
It’s funny how people can take information and completely change it to create a something false. I was always under the impression that Magic Johnson was free from HIV. There were stories about a secret cure that he paid millions of dollars to attain. There were stories of a special blood transfusion which replaced his old blood with new blood. The conspiracy theorists were going crazy with their tales.
Yesterday, the truth came out. Magic Johnson is like any other person who contracts the disease. Magic still has HIV and he must take his medicine like any other individual. He began with the well-known AIDS cocktail and is now taking the replacement pill. Magic will continue to live with HIV for the rest of his life; he is not cured. (There is no cure!)
The most interesting bit of information, for me, is the fact that Magic believes that he has been a gift and a curse for HIV. On the one hand, he helped to raise awareness about HIV, which helped to teach people the importance of safe sex. The downside was the fact that people believed Magic was cured. The public watched as Magic regained his health and they believed that HIV was no longer a deadly disease.
People should continue to practice safe sex. Living with HIV comes with many complications and the medicine is expensive. Magic was lucky enough to react well to the medication and he has the money to keep up with the daily intake, but many people are not as lucky. BE SMART and avoid contracting HIV.
To read about my views on this disease, read AIDS is Not For Everyone.
I hope we don’t get to the point where HIV/AIDS becomes as common and accepted as teenage pregnancy!