Sunday, July 06, 2014

How to Survive

Every time I rewatch the trailer for How to Survive a Plague (2012) — and I find it compulsively rewatchable; I keep playing it in the background as I prepare for my lecture on AIDS on Tuesday morning — I tear up when I get to the part where Peter Staley, speaking in 1990 at the Sixth International Conference on AIDS in San Francisco, says "Some day, there will be a people alive on this earth who will hear the story that once there was a terrible disease, and that a brave group of people stood up an fought, and in some cases died, so that others might live and be free."

Well, one small slice of those people will be the students in the course I'm teaching, on Tuesday afternoon. All of them are younger than the drug cocktail that produced the so-called Lazarus effect in 1996; that has shaped their world. But they should hear the story behind.

And if you haven't seen the movie yourself, see it. If you have seen it, see it again. Not only because it is an amazing story. But we have a lot of terrible evils that plague this world. This is how we'll survive them: by acting up. And fighting back.

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