We’ve all heard the stats. Black women across this country are being infected with HIV at alarming rates. Many have pinned this epidemic on the backs of “down low” men, while others see it as irresponsibility at its finest. Whatever the case may be, nearly thirty years after HIV/AIDS first began to ravage communities of Americans, it’s still here tearing them apart.

Recently, I had the pleasure of viewing a trailer for Mike Brown’s unfinished documentary 25 To Life.’ The documentary takes an honest and surprising look at a man with HIV on a quest for redemption.

The film follows William Brawner, a young man who contracted HIV when he was just 18-monts-old. Since he was a child, his family told him to conceal his status and he kept the secret under wraps for 25 years. During this time, however, Brawner engaged in rampant sexual activity with unknowing women, many of whom he failed to protect.

Now, Brawner is married and an active HIV advocate, and wants to set the record straight and get a bit of redemption from those whose lives he changed forever.

But is it too late?

Check out the trailer for ’25 To Life’ and go to the film’s website to donate

What do you think? Could you forgive someone who knowingly slept with you while they were HIV-positive? 

  • HeartofDiamonds

    I actually know this guy personally. I went to college with him and was quite friendly with him. He dated a couple of my friends, so this video hits close to home for me. He’s not the monster some of you think. For your info, he caught HIV through a bad blood transfusion. Back in those days, HIV was a gay, white man’s disease, and if a school found out a child had HIV, they would kick you out. Also, a lot of communities would go to these people’s homes, and throw things, try to start fires at their homes, get them kicked out, not let their kids play, and the news would be at your house. It was a traumatic experience for kids who had HIV in the early, mid and late 80′s. There was so much confusion that people had and ignorance, so I totally understand why his mom wanted to protect her son. However, I also want to say that he made a choice to be promiscuous in college. He was that forward, player type and he had swag. A lot of girls liked him, but he also put himself out there. He was popular in college. He claimed that he usually used protection, but I can’t confirm this. It’s really sad because I understand his fear on one side, but I also feel that he owed it to these women to wear protection and tell them. Then again, they have a responsibility to protect themselves. We can’t be so trusting of anyone. No one will protect you better than yourselves. I pray none of these women were infected, but if so, I hope that God can heal all the brokenness he caused to innocent people. For those that said he should be in jail, there may come a time where he’s prosecuted for this. It is a crime to knowingly have HIV and not tell a partner.

  • http://globetracer.wordpress.com She Traces

    I couldn’t find any info about when/where this is playing? Help…

  • Rakel

    I’ll say this first, I’m glad he’s in a loving relationship. People with HIV/AIDS are often ostracized and stigmatized. So the fact that he found acceptance and love is great. But did he ever stop to think that it may not be the same for his partners? I personally don’t think I could forgive him. But then again I would never have sex with anybody w/o knowing their status first. I’m not trying to judge these women. But you take a risk by having unprotected sex. And some of the consequences can be life altering or life threatening. I hope he finds every women he slept with, and tells them what he should have years ago. I think about these women, not knowing and unintentionally infecting others. Very scary. He’s done something that he can’t take back. I understand he was raised to keep it a secret but he got older and eventually knew better. If your partner won’t get tested or ask you to just “trust” him. It doesn’t need to happen. We as ladies have to put ourselves first.

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