With the ongoing global pandemic, people have been saying a lot of dumb and conflationary things. From people saying they are going to do their "own research" — do you have an empty lab on hand and the knowledge to properly investigate viruses and vaccines — to others (read: Donald Trump) suggesting that ingesting bleach might help, it's been quite the ride. But Jonathan Van Ness has had enough of one specific, conflationary comment.
"The fascist NBA won't let Kyrie Irving play for refusing a vaccine," Georgia Republican, Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Green tweeted Thursday. She was referring to an ongoing NBA dispute where the Brooklyn Nets' Irving has been benched until he is vaccinated. "But yet, they still let Magic Johnson play with HIV."
Green wasn't the only conservative to put forward the notion but she was the one that JVN decided to address.
"What a dumb ass," they tweeted. "HIV is sexually transmitted not a respratory virus, not to menton HIV+ folks who take ART and are undetectable are untrasmittable."
"Dumb, dumb, dumb fucks at it again," he also wrote. "Learn about HIV y'all. Enough with this fear-mongering."
What the entrepreneur and Queer Eye star was referring to was simple: HIV is transmitted through bodily fluids that are not exchanged through being in the same room with someone like the virus at the center of the ongoing pandemic. But there's even more.
When Magic Johnson announced to the world, on November 7, 1991 that he had contracted HIV, he retired from basketball, effective immediately. He had learned of his diagnosis the day before.
He was voted by fans in 1992 to be n the NBA All Star Game, which he took part in while on his HIV medication and in close consultation with doctors. This even though several people in the league were vocal in their dissent. He then later played in the 1992 Summer Olympics. He then returned to the NBA in the 1995-1996 season, playing for the Lakers again to the objections of others in the league but under the consultation of medical advice. Which is the key here.
In addition to having contracted a virus that was not airborne, Johnson continued in the NBA while taking his medicine under medical advice. Being on medication likely made Johnson undetectable meaning that he is not able to transmit the virus as well. The unvaccinated, have not made such moves.