Silent Epidemic Essay
I wish Id die right then this was Laetitia reaction when she found out she was infected with HIV. (Breaking 36) Imagine living in a home in Africa, with 10 other people including yourself, then finding out that two of them live with one of the worst epidemics ever AIDS! What can the residents of Africa do to stop it? Is there a possibility that it could be stopped? Scientist have a number of theories about this epidemic, but recent news show that AIDS is not as silent as predicted. Where does the virus come from? Who is involved in this epidemic?
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Who are the most affected? Answer is the residents of the continent of Africa. AIDS epidemic may be just one of the latest of sexual Mammalian cross-species viral transfer, triggers by the techniques of virology developed in the 20th century, which subsequently spread out of control in the new host species. Which there was a missing link too. (Breaking N. P. ) According to most scientist it has been said that AIDS first appeared in Mid-Africa in 1959, in Leopoloville, The Bulling Congo, and Kinshasa, Africa. It does suppose to have come from a single common ancestor.
What is meant is that it might have come from a vaccine that the United States secret military service was trying to create for polio. Curtis 54) The U. S. hired a naturalized American polio researcher from Switzerland named Hilary Koprowsky. Dr. Koprowsky traveled to the epicenter of the epidemicBelgian Congo, Rwanda and Burundi. Dr. Koprowsky believed that by contracting liquid from chimps, or monkeys it would avoid the contamination of polio. Reason for that is because he would do test among the apes, and they would be immune to it. He then first tried the vaccine on children who where suppose to be mentally deficient.
Then several African citizens would volunteer to be vaccinated for money. Four years later Dr. Koprowsky warned congress that it could be dangerous, and that the experiments should be stopped. Between 1957-60, a missing link was found in chimps from Gallo. Monkeys, and its kingdom have a virus similar, therefore if it is transfer to human, it turns into Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV), after a period of 7-10 years or less it turns on to AIDS. This led to find out that AIDS virus would eventually turn up on humans. There are several tribes all over Africa.
Most of them share different believes, and religions. In the border of central Africa there is a tribe that uses a ritual, that is a bizarre sexual practice. It is suppose to cause sexual arousal, the dominant male of the tribe will pick his mate for the night, or day. Then they both introduce monkey blood into their pubic areas, thighs, and backs. Those tribes seem to believe that they are immune to any virus that would stop them from using their ritual, and their Gods will protect them. This is called the kinky-sex-theory, this might have been one of the possible ways that most tribes live with the virus.
There have been various arguments, and theories on how the virus was primarily contracted in Africa. It is suggested by studies that the virus has been around for a while now. It has been studied that some Africans tribes where, and still are immune to it. When rural Europeans, and Americans came near the tribes in the early 1900s, they got involved with the tribes and got infected, which then caused and epidemic. Most of the mix marriages have spread the virus through out Europe, and America, not knowing that it would cause such a huge epidemic.
There are several ways which the virus may be contracted, tribes in southern Africa hunt for monkey meat in the wild. Dr. Robert Gallo suggest that after the hunter has trap his monkey, nd tried slitting the monkey, his skin might get cut, and the blood from the monkey might have been contracted. After the hunter gets infected, who would not know, and will reproduced, and infects feature offspring, and the females in the tribes. In which most cases, most tribes share sexual Partners. (Curtis 59) Most of the African citizens do not know much about protected or unprotected sex.
Therefore people get infected, because they dont believe it could happen to them. Some males believe that when they contract the virus, they can get rid of it by having unprotected sex with a female. Which it actually results on to more people getting infected, and it keeps on spreading just the same way it started. Although, there are some groups that have higher risk of contracting the virus: male homosexuals, intravenous-drug users, hemophiliacs and the sexual partners of those people. The virus attacks the acquired immune system until the body is unable to combat common viruses, which may kill. At this stage HIV becomes AIDS.
While the virus is still at the stage of HIV, it is usually rare to find the virus in the body. After it has developed, it affects even more, which usually leads to death. Death will sometimes occur right away, or it will take its time painfully, or with out even feeling it. The virus is usually carried in blood, semen, breast milk, vaginal fluids, and exchange of common bodily fluids through sexual contact. There are currently 13. 2 million orphans that have lost their parents, either both, or just One out of two of them to AIDS. Ninety-five percent of them live in Africa, 920,000 are infected in Zimbabwe.
Orphans in Africa are more likely to suffer discrimination. Their family members would not take care of them, or accept them. Some of their family members might barely have enough money to support themselves, or take care of their own children. Therefore, this causes most of those 920, 000 not to have parents at all. All this leads to deep poverty between them, no homes, and no food. Tsepo, who lost his mother to AIDS is now an orphan, he takes care of his two little brothers, his father never appeared. He is the man of the family he had to hide his mothers will so that the family will not take their house away and leave them homeless.
Then the family rejected them, since he would not allow them to sell the house. Now he has the responsibility to find food, clothing, money, and all the utilities for the three of them. AIDS among pregnant women within a 2-year period has gone down, in Tamil, Nadu. With a rate of 7 out of 10 being infected, going down to, 2 out of 10. (Breaking N. P. ) After mothers have their children most of their children don not usually survive longer than 1-6 months. Seventy-Thousand children are born with HIV in South Africa every year, not counting the rest that never get the change to be in clean environment, like a hospital (Breaking 37).
In Myanmars coast fishermen return from trip and transmitted HIV to their wives passing it on to their unborn children. (Breaking 35) Which leads on to the higher scale of testing of HIV, is among pregnant women. In 1999 5. 4 million people where infected with HIV, 3. 6 live in Africa and 2. 8 passed away last year. In Africa 17 million have died since the epidemic has started, 3. 7 of those were children. An additional 12 million have been orphan by AIDS, with an estimation of 8. 8% being infected with HIV/AIDS. (Breaking 42) Although, rates have gone down, there are currently 36 million people infected in the world.
More than 70% of them were in sub-Saharan Africa. Three point eight were newly infected last year. The rates have slightly gone down in the last two years, but there is still ignorance about it. The majority of the victims are young adults, most of them are suppose to be the healthiest members of society. Although, they are not, they are brought into poverty, struggle to survive, corruption, and denial. Denial is the hardest, they do not believe that it could ever happen to them. When they feel sick, they try ignore it and to convince themselves that they do not have anything. This is what causes to spread even more.
More females are infected than males, which many of the females have Children to take care off, after they pass away it leads to more innocent orphans. For the future generation what is needs to be thought is more logic, and common sense. Males have to be more tolerant to their sex lives, and females need to stop being subservient to men’s sexual desires, in a male dominated world. The place where has affected the most are located at the region of Zaire and Rwanda. This major epidemic has left millions of Africans suffering, with a rate of approximately 2 out 10 people infected in each country in Africa is extremely serious.
With rates like this we can only expect for the continent to go down. Currently, the survival rate of an individual living in Africa is 43, due to this epidemic it has been hypothesis that in ten years it will be at least thirty-six. From 96-97 the rate of teenage girls in Uganda have dropped down. to 1. 4%, from 4. 4% in 89-90. Those are goods that could indicate that it could get better for the future generations. Most of the victims do not like to acknowledge that they have the virus. Most of the countries in Africa, live in poverty, and need job everyday. Racism against the virus, and their carriers is every where.
Most of the time when bosses find out that their employee has AIDS they are automatically laid-off. This hurts the economy, and the poverty rate up. On many occasions virus have come and go. Unfortunately, 36 million people have to live with AIDS, with approximately 3. 5 newly infected every year in Africa. It leaves millions of orphans, it leaves behind poverty, and it leaves unfinished lives. Will it ever stop spreading? That is something that us humans have to take care off ourselves, by educating the masses, and stopping corruption. These might be some of the most important factors of preventing an even major epidemic.