By Christi Carras Los Angeles Times
TV host Andy Cohen has a message for the media and government amid the monkeypox outbreak: don’t stigmatize gay people.
On Monday on “Watch What Happens Live,” his late-night Bravo show, the St. Louis native shared his thoughts on the monkeypox outbreak, which the World Health Organization recently declared a “health emergency.” public of international concern”.
Monkeypox is a disease similar to smallpox – although generally milder – with symptoms including fever, body aches, swollen lymph nodes, chills, fatigue and rash.
“Monkeypox cases have risen so dramatically in New York City that Mayor Eric Adams issued an executive order declaring a state of emergency today, after what has been a disastrous response from our government thus far” , Cohen said, speaking directly to viewers.
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“I hope this new order will help our leaders deal with this threat and pressure the federal government to deploy much-needed resources like vaccines, which have been very hard to come by.”
The ‘Real Housewives’ producer addressed his next remarks specifically to his ‘gay brothers’, urging them to take the spread of the virus ‘seriously’.
“It’s affecting us at much higher rates than others right now, so be aware, get vaccinated if you can, and please – I know it’s summer, we all have COVID fatigue – but please be careful and don’t take unnecessary risks,” he added.
While monkeypox is spreading widely among men who have sex with men as well as transgender and non-binary people, health officials warn that anyone can contract the virus through direct contact with infectious wounds, crusts or bodily fluids, as well as touching the clothes and bedding used. by a sick person.
On Monday, Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency in California about the spread of monkeypox in an effort to “enhance the state’s vaccination efforts”.
“I call on everyone in government and the media not to stigmatize our community, which is already under attack from many people who would rather use us as scapegoats than help us,” Cohen continued in his post. public interest.
“And if you’re not a gay man, you might think it doesn’t affect you now, but that’s everybody’s problem. Because, as we’ve learned from very recent history, Unless we act now, these things can get a whole lot worse very quickly.”