Larry Kramer blasts US government for failing gay people
Playwright, public health advocate and gay activist Larry Kramer has blasted the US government for its failure to effectively deal with the HIV epidemic in the 34 years since the virus first began making headlines and taking lives.
Kramer made a passionate speech calling for a cure to HIV and an end to deaths from AIDS whilst accepting the inaugural Larry Kramer Activism Award from the Gay Men’s Health Crisis.
The 80-year-old activist listed alarming statistics such as the 78 million infected and 30 million plus deaths from AIDS to draw a line between government's failure to act and the mammoth loss of life.
"When we first became acquainted with HIV there were 41 cases," said Kramer.
"The main difference between the Larry Kramer who helped to start Gay Men’s Health Crisis in his living room in 1982 and ACT UP in 1987 and the Larry Kramer who stands before you now, is that I no longer have any doubt that our government is content, via sins of omission or commission, to allow the extermination of my homosexual population to continue unabated," Kramer decried.
"Thirty-four-years is a long time for every president and every Congress to sit back and let us die.”
Kramer went on to blast the government for its ineffectiveness in dealing with the health crisis which has taken the lives of so many gay men.
"We should have had more in 35 years. These are not what most people would call bad people. But these heterosexuals are not people who are losing any sleep over the death of so many millions of people.'
Kramer suggested the “evil being inflicted on gay people must cease”.
'The battle cry now must be one word: Cure. Cure Cure”.
Watch Joe Mantello and Mark Ruffalo honour Kramer with the award. Skip to 9:30 for Kramer’s speech.