Thursday, June 01, 2006

PBS "Frontline" On HIV/AIDS -- The Evangelical Plusses and Minuses

I can't do justice to this by posting a lengthy riff on it -- no time, as books and articles in "real life" are impinging on my blog time. But don't miss Frontline's The Age of AIDS program. If necessary, you can view it online. Evangelicals, and some less harsh members of the Right, will enjoy seeing a program where President Bush does something humanitarian. And who won't enjoy hearing and seeing U2's Bono rousing the troops, or (wierdest of all) even changing the mind of Jesse Helms on AIDS relief? There is a lot of positive commentary on evangelical contributions to (in particular) the African AIDS crisis.

But the program also delves into the darker, as in realistic, side of just how hard it is going to be to beat AIDS. At one point, AIDS is compared to the hare and AIDS relief efforts to the Tortoise. That is, AIDS is infecting five million new people per year. And those with it now will not likely ever be cured; they only manage the desease.

There is also the uncomfortable (for some evangelicals) discussion about just how prominent the discussion of condom usage should be. It is unfortunate that the otherwise pretty positive discussion on evangelical contributions, including that of Franklin Graham, Billy's son, is somewhat blunted by evangelical / Christian Right obtuseness on the condom issue.

At any rate, do see this. I don't think any of us who claim to care about Jesus and the least of these for whom He died can afford not to see it... and to grapple with the many questions it raises.

1 comment:

Koelpien said...

I realize that condom use is a touchy issue, but don't limit their critics to the hard right. Despite the many positive things the Catholic church does in fighting povery and supporting social justice, getting them to recommend condom use to prevent AIDS (or, I suppose, ANY condom use at all, no matter the reason) just causes a lot of stammering.