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AIDS - Beyond Health Problem Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Dereje Amera, Ethiopia Dec 7, 2004
Health   Opinions
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What we were trained in schools, about positive and negatives, was all about integers in mathematics and magnets in physics subjects. Today this phenomenon has manifested itself in a different way within human beings, and it is becoming normal in the media, one to one conversations and in any of the communications we have, to label people as positive or negative. It is very interesting to see how our jargons change from one form to the other, whose effect also varies depending on the type and nature of the jargon itself. To label people as positive or negative in our day-to-day operation, pointing out our fingers on them or using sign language is such a customary behaviour, which threatens the people who are victims.

Ethiopia is a place of cultural heritage where people respect each other no matter who one is, and whose diversity colors the beauty of its nature. As one of the historic nations in this planet, we could not press on ward as we should in terms of scientific and technological discoveries, rather we are tied up with man made catastrophes and complications whose consequences resulted to generations here and after. Among the many complications we have in our society today, HIV/AIDS, the weakest virus type and the worst disease, is so prevalent.

HIV/AIDS has counted years and surged in many families, especially in countries like Ethiopia, whose effect is creating such a catastrophe and danger in the economic and social setting in which we all are planning to structure. Our people are voluntarily, but unknowingly becoming victims of such threat, which creates such a fear and frustration in our society, and whose magnitude encompasses all parts of the nation as well, with such speed that our dreams in leading prosperous and bright future is put in dilemma and question.

Even though the individual has the free will or moral choice to exercise one’s right, the consequence as a result of this choice starts affecting an increasing number of members of that society. It will be considered as an issue to the society, which needs attention and some kind of action by the society. It will ultimately become more of a ‘societal concern’ rather than ‘the individual.’ As we can see, toady, AIDS is beyond a health problem, and it is affecting both social and economical developments of any given society, which kills many millions of people who are in the productive age of their life. In fact, it is indeed a man-made catastrophe, which requires man-made solutions.

There are certain conceptions, which had contributed to the increasing number of people who became victims of such complication, and these conceptions have affected people to be in such a crisis and put them under such a category or label.

One of the conceptions is people’s attitude and perception toward sex. Sex is considered as something that people do for relaxation. When people want to relax, they normally associate relaxation with the opposite sex. This association is mainly connected to performing sexual intercourse and always ends up with that transaction. Whenever dating is made, the mentality toward that act, in both genders, is sexual intercourse. Even though sex is a natural desire and impulse that comes about due to the interaction of opposite sexes, we have the capacity to oppress our excessive passions that may lead us to such ‘unproductive attraction,’ and control our thinking and desire so that our life may be protected from an unsafe way of life and mentality. It does not mean that we need to practice monasticism, but we have to re-orient our definition and interpretation toward sex, which may help us in our interaction. The cinema or movies show us this same feature of attitudes, which convinced many people that people want to imitate that same thinking, and attitude, our own independent choices and decisions we need to make for our life.

The other conception is belief. Many people have a strong sense of belief than reason. It is indeed customary to many people to associate any strange incident with super natural power. When any incident happens in any nation, which is beyond one’s own thinking, people prefer to associate it with a super natural power, than applying efforts to solve problems. One can even say that the degree of people’s interaction with regard to solving problems is less than the degree of people’s interaction for talking about idle topics, gossips and backbiting. It is our knowledge that when this challenge (HIV) becomes an issue on national basis, many people prefer to interpret it in a way their belief has shaped and oriented them. They considered it as a punishment from the super natural power, and convinced themselves in a way that this is not their fault. This kind of belief aggravated the influence of such phenomena in many ways that it gave them good excuses to the mentality of many people encouraging them to dwell in it.

The belief we have in our heart is currently becoming an obstacle to the solutions provided to prevent such catastrophes, since once it occurred and is ruining society, which aggravates social danger and problems to steadily increasing and painful as well. We live in such a dilemma that there are certain conditions that our hearts may not agree with our reasons, but in such cases the balance should go to the interest of the society, it is not a matter of creating battle fields within ourselves. The purpose why our heart and mind should agree is not only for the benefit of our self on selfish interest, but also it should serve the public at large.

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Writer Profile
Dereje Amera

Writing is a powerful instrument to promote one's ideology, so as to transform and galvanize the whole of humanity to have a better perspective about this world.

Words are just combinations of letters, but the power they exert in every human frame is still a mystery to all.

Writing uses these mysterious forces of words as a tool to introduce, induce and create vibrations in society, which do have an influence on every aspect of our life as human beings.

May the power of WORDS prevail over all!!
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