January / December 1996
1995 POZ Honors: Role Models
by David Tinmouth
It's like Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid remade as a spaghetti Western
Italians Serio Magnis, Ferdinando Attanasio and Antonio Lamarra made headlines in August after robbing five banks of more than $40,000. Called the "AIDS Gang" by newspapers, Magnis told the media the group staged the robberies to create public controversy. "We get no drugs, no medical assistance, no care. We wanted to draw public attention to the fact of our sickness." The three later denounced a smattering of copy-cat AIDS Gang-style robberies throughout Italy.
We could start with Colin Powell
At a Yale commencement address this spring, Baltimore mayor Kurt Schmoke—udner whose administration Baltimore's pioneering needle exhange program has had incontrovertible success—urged for a public health response to HIV among IV drug users, reminded all that AIDS is "a crossroads" that demands we "question conventional wisdom."
Breaking the stereotypes
Greg Louganis stunned the nation by going public with his status, showing that life doesn't end when one tests HIV positive. "I want people to know who I am," Louganis wrote in his autobiography, Breaking the Surface.
Search: Serio Magnis, Ferdinando Attanasio, Antonio Lamarra, Kurt Schmoke, Greg Louganis, AIDS Gang
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