Sullivan on the Barebacking Story

Justin Schwartz jkschw at
Thu May 31 09:09:03 PDT 2001

Why is it unsafe for him to have unprotected sex with the HIV positive? If your point is that some people who aren't HIV+ take stupid risks because of their fetishes or whatever, well, they assume the risk; it's not like anyone who is HIV+ and has unsafe sex in the unstod context that this is what everyone who is doing is doing is taking advantage of anyone. Sheesh. You might as well say, it's bad to date in a singles group, because SOME people who date are cheating on their SOs, and not really single.

I take great glee in the exposure of the sexual wrongdoing of Jim Bakker or Jimmy Swaggart, or Newt Gingrich or Henry Hyde, etc., but I think you are off base. If Sullivan is to be attacked for his own moralizing about the sex lives of others, attack him for that, not for consensual sex games he plays.

So, to answer your question, Charles, whether the personal is political depends.


>From: kelley <kelley at>
>Reply-To: lbo-talk at
>To: lbo-talk at, lbo-talk at
>Subject: RE: Sullivan on the Barebacking Story
>Date: Thu, 31 May 2001 11:48:41 -0400
>At 02:13 PM 5/31/01 +0000, Justin Schwartz wrote:
>>I don't care about hypocrisy: it is a venial sin at worst; and I don't
>>think he's guilty of it here anyway. Please, let's do get back to
>>attacking his political views, and not his private life! --jks
>but this particular hypocrisy is different, right? he runs around
>lecturing others about their behavior and making political hay out of it
>and, worse, encouraging stereotypes against gay men, some of which have
>pretty tragic endings for gay men, yes? and then he turns around and
>engages in unsafe sexual behavior of the sort that he condemned. this
>isn't personally bad for him, but bad for others. he _harms_ others in his
>personal life and he harms then in his political positions on the topic of
>sexual behavior.
>fact is, he was advertising for bareback sex and that means that there are
>a lot of people out there who actually find it sexually exciting to have
>bareback sex. they _want_ to expose themselves to HIV. (nathan's ignorance
>aside: this is a fetish and it's no diff from others). given that, sullivan
>advertised at a site that promotes bareback sex, and not so that HIV+ men
>can have sex with one another. furthermore, altho he might have wanted to
>only have sex with other HIV+ men, he could never know that they were for
>sure, could he?

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