APB Speaker Cleve Jones Says Danger & Politicization of COVID-19 Mirrors the HIV/AIDS Crisis in Recent Op-Ed
26 Aug 2020
APB speaker Cleve Jones is a renowned activist whose work began in the 1970s during the gay liberation movement. A mentee of groundbreaking LGBTQ+ activist Harvey Milk, Jones has gone on to co-found the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, create the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt and publish the memoir, When We Rise.
In his recent op-ed, Cleve compares the similarities and differences between HIV and the coronavirus, mentioning how thirty years ago gay people were blamed for the pandemic and today, President Trump blames the Chinese. “The notion of a ‘gay virus’ then made no more sense than does that of a ‘Chinese virus’ today. And both beliefs betray a deep ignorance and bigotry that have lethal consequences,” Jones says.
Cleve’s contributions to the gay liberation movement and the LGBTQ+ community have made a distinctive impact. His creation of the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt in 1985 has inspired thousands to commemorate those who have died of AIDS-related causes. A passionate speaker with a powerful story, Jones consistently receives rave reviews for both his onstage presence and collaboration with clients.