i though there were 52 players on the pitch rather than 22.‘
' Goalkeeper and Cup Final hero Ally Maxwell gives us an arithmetic lesson. Motherwell style.
‘It's depressing to switch on Top of the POps and watch a group lurching around like a bunch ofbrickies armed with guitars.‘
Steve Severin of Siouxsie and the Banshees says it weren '1 like that when he were a lad.
‘John Major is the best thing that could have happened to Europe.” German Chancellor Helmut Kohl tries the sook y approach after getting an honorary degree at Edinburgh University.
‘Ifshe yelled at me, I would yell twice as hard back. It was like a Howard Hawks movie. but rated X.‘ Alek Keshishian. director of ‘In Bed With Madonna'. reveals his subtle methods for dealing with shy actresses.
‘Actually it was just the working title but nobody could think of anything
3 Editor Denise Searle shows a lack of inspiration over new left-wing newspaper and lowercase trendy, ‘socialist‘.
‘At least now people might believe that we‘re not in this for personal entertainment.‘
Manic Street Preachers" guitarist Ritchie Edwards after carving '4 REA L ' on his arm during an NME interview.
‘I also had double vision. It looked as
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Don’t die of arrogance
While 5 June 1991 sees the ten-year anniversary of the official recognition of AIDS as a disease, recent statistics show that it and HIV infection are now spreading rapidly through the heterosexual
community. Alan Morrison discovers a certain amount of complacency and prejudice at the root of a problem that affects
gt‘ is. ': ACT UP bring the message home with a die-in. n the decade since AIDS was first officially recognised as a disease in its own right. over 340.000 cases worldwide have been reported to the World Health Organisation. At the same time. the estimated figures for people infected with HIV is around 8—10 million. due mainly to the relatively long incubation period between catching the virus and the development of full-blown AIDS. A similar discrepancy can be found in figures for Scotland: 207 cases of AIDS have been diagnosed, whereas by the end of 1990 a total of 1874 cases of HIV infection had been
In response to the results of anonymous testing
for the virus in England and Wales. Scottish Health Minister Michael Forsyth announced last
week the setting up ofa ‘task force‘ to consider measures to reduce the spread of AIDS and co-ordinate local and national services. It had been discovered that in some inner-London ante-natal clinics one in 200 women were infected and at Sexually Transmitted Disease clinics up to one man in every ()1. Scottish figures. being researched by the communicable diseases unit at Glasgow‘s Ruchill Hospital. will not appear until later this year. but the incidence ofinfection through heterosexual transmission is expected to be higher in Scotland because ofthe link between HIV and intravenous drug abuse (The List 148).
What is already disturbing is that. according to Lothian Health Boards AIDS Team. tests on pregnant women at Edinburgh's Western General Ilospital in the twelve month period between April 1990 and March 1991 showed that. out on4 women diagnosed HIV positive through sexual contact. only 12 fell into what has previously been referred to as ‘high risk groups‘. The problem with all AIDS-related statistics is that they only cover those who have been tested. and so the fact that many people who are not homosexuals or drug users wrongly consider themselves to be ‘safe‘ means that an inestimable number ofsexually active people could unknowingly be I IIV positive.
‘More voluntary testing is needed so that individuals will know whether or not they are
affected. so that they can take appropriate action and can ask for help.‘ says Dr Judy Bury of the AIDS team. She believes that. although more needs to be done on educating the public— starting at primary school level — about relationships in order to encourage open discussion on safe sex. there is more behind the problem than mere complacency.
‘My impression is that people know the dangers of HIV and they’re not lacking knowledge. The problem is the gap between that knowledge and the way people behave. It’s difficult enough trying to convince some teenagers that having sex now may bring a baby in eight or nine months. but to convince them that if they have sex now they could get AIDS in ten years . . .‘
It is only recently that politicians. the media and the general public have woken up to the threat of AIDS to the heterosexual community. although on a world level — in Africa 80 per cent of3 million AIDS cases are thought to have been acquired heterosexually — it is probably the commonest means ofspread. Most cases of heterosexual transmission occur following straightforward vaginal intercourse. Studies suggest that between an infected man and an uninfected woman. the virus is passed on in 10-30 per cent of cases. and between an infected woman and an uninfected man. in 5—15 per cent ofcases.
Some organisations confronting the problem believe that the dramatic rate at which HIV is spreading in the heterosexual population not only has social and medical implications. but political ones as well. ‘AIDS has been used to stigmatise certain social groups and that is dangerous —- it smacks of prejudice.‘ says Andrew Johnson ofthe Edinburgh branch of ACT UP (AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power). ‘It‘s been in the heterosexual population from Day One. it’s affected babies from Day One. it's affected intravenous drug users from Day One. Worldwide AIDS is a heterosexual problem. but it has to be made clear that it affects everyone.’
Formed in New York in 1987. ACT UP is a self-financing organisation dedicated to raising public awareness of the continued existence of AIDS. The Edinburgh branch is using the ten year anniversary to stage a number of demonstrations aimed. not only at the public. but at Scottish government officials. This year only Lothian. Greater Glasgow and Tayside received increases in funding from the Scottish Office to deal with AIDS/HIV. while six other health boards actually suffered decreases - a situation that is almost ridiculous. considering that in Britain four people die of AIDS every day and as many as 50.000 people could be infected with HIV.
A C T U P is organising a ‘die-in ' demo outside the Scottish Office in Edinburgh at3pm on Sat 1 June and a peaceful vigil of remembrance at 7pm on 5 June at the same venue.