Wednesday, December 2, 2009

"That doesn't work....Let's keep doing it."

Matthew Hanley at Mercator Net discusses why "harm reduction" is not working in the battle against AIDS.

At a deeper level, what all these risk reduction measures have in common is a deflating absence of hope. And hope for the future is what is needed most -- hope to be healed of past traumas; hope to live free of disease, discord and inner turmoil.

Fostering real hope is difficult, because it means first recognizing and then aspiring to a preferable alternate behaviour, a standard even. But this is precisely what our culture tends to deny, relativise, or deride. This is why risk reduction, harm reduction and safe sex are the only politically safe ways to engage the issue. To foster hope, the public health establishment needs to be courageous and break free from the bonds of culture and from the deadening despair of relativism.

The virtually exclusive focus on risk reduction measures amounts to the quiet institutionalisation of hopelessness.

Is this really the best we can do for our fellow human beings? Or is it time for a change?

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