There’s an old Hindi saying: Jo garjte hai vo baraste nahi. Those who thunder don’t pour. Meaning: Those who talk don’t perform.
In English: Put up or Shut Up.
We’ve been watching old Phil Donahues, HIV documentaries, and videos from the 80s ACT UP days of radical, nude, in your face, bullhorn, won’t settle for anything less than a cure kind of ACTIVISM. Its both inspiring and discouraging. Inspiring because it’s true that a group of sick, suffering, angry radicals REALLY CAN storm the gates of Washington DC and make changes over the course of 3 days. Discouraging because the Hep-C Epidemic has exceeded the number of HIV deaths, there is a cure, and yet little nothing is being done.
I think a lot of us expected a surge of awareness after the anti-virals with up to 99% cure rates came out. Or maybe the report put out by the CDC of the 220 areas in the US vulnerable to the Hep-C epidemic would be the push needed to address this virus? No. Surely the shock of hearing and seeing that White Women in their 30s are the fastest growing group of people going to prison because of the opioid epidemic would rouse our sleeping communities and politicians? Nope. Not even the CDCs report that Hep-C is deadlier than all other 60 infectious diseases combined moves us into the kind of response needed to really address the Hepatitis-C issue.
James and I have been working Plan A for a while. Playing patty cake with this virus is safe and indeed yields a little fruit. Lately, we have been considering Plan B.
Plan B isn’t polite, because Hepatitis-C isn’t polite.
Hepatitis-C isn’t polite, it doesn’t sit down, share some stats and leave a business card behind. It eats away at the core of our bodies. Silently. Then it pounces suddenly. Hep-C turns us yellow and alienates us from our loved ones. It makes us writhe in pain, and eventually, it kills us.
Another saying. Fight FIRE with FIRE. This virus is a fire that leaves nothing behind, do we need to fight it with a commensurate reaction? Hepatitis-C has been laughing at our plans for many years, because that is all they are: Plans.
Statistics, meetings, summits, action plans, webinars, and highly paid executives studying graphs DONT KILL ONE HEP-C VIRUS. Ever. The planning phase is over, its time to execute.
To the powers that be: Please hear the voice of those who are TODAY turning yellow and dying: LESS TALK MORE ACTION!