Editors choice



This officer used the stigma of HIV/AIDS as an intimidation tactic by attempting to instill fear in the public.

Source: Toronto Star

A video shot by Waseem Khan shows a Toronto police officer who told him that a man police were arresting was "going to spit in your face, you’re going to get AIDS.” (CITYNEWS)
A video shot by Waseem Khan shows a Toronto police officer who told him that a man police were arresting was "going to spit in your face, you’re going to get AIDS.” (CITYNEWS)

HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is not spread through saliva.

Toronto police demonstrate inclusiveness by Tasering man, making HIV-phobic comment

Here is another really good article, by Arshy Mann from Daily Xtra

As for the AIDS comment, there is so much here that is wrong. First, you cannot transmit HIV through saliva, and you certainly can’t transmit “AIDS.” But the comment is also revealing.

As far as I can tell, there are two possible reasons why the police officer would make such a statement.

Either he was aware of the man’s HIV status, and was casually revealing it to a witness. But according to a recent Ontario Court of Appeal decision, police can only reveal a person’s HIV status after they’ve been formally charged with a crime and if it’s for a “consistent purpose.” Clearly neither of those conditions were satisfied in this case.

If you are in Toronto and would like to take part in a “coffee chat” with the Toronto Police Service LGBT Liaison Officer; one will be taking place on 26 January at the Second Cup in the Village, 522 Church Street from from 16:00 to 18:00.


Further if you are in Toronto and concerned about your safety and the safety of others while you are in the village; a meeting is being held at The 519 Community Centre, Room 106, from 18:00 to 20:00 that same evening.

TORONTO – Yesterday the Toronto Star reported on an incident that involved an arrest of a suspect that had allegedly assaulted a police officer. Fine. Due diligence. Right?

Not so much. The detention of the suspect was filmed, as seen above, by Waseem Kahn, who was fully within his rights to film the police action. What happened next has had my blood boiling all day.

While it can be argued that we, those standing on the street or viewing the video, may not have a full understanding of the situation; it is curious why all of a sudden a police officer would be agitated with peaceful citizen fully within his rights, was not interfering with any of the police action. Looks to me like he knew he was caught doing something he wasn’t supposed to be doing.

Just my observation.

What happened next is inexcusable. The male officer, seen in photos here said that the man they were arresting had AIDS and that he (the suspect) was going to spit in his (Kahn’s) eye and give him AIDS.

Sweet Mother Mary of Mustard – what the fuck was that?

So let’s take a moment to do a little recap of what is happened lately here in Toronto.

  1. Black Lives Matter disrupts Pride 2016 Parade with a sit-in protest makes demands, that the then head of Pride Toronto agreed to, and then pushed for a vote, that was not on the agenda, at the recent Annual General Meeting. The members voted to accept all demands, which included excluding uniformed officers from marching in the parade, having police floats in the parade and not having any police services booths at any of the events or street fair. Read more here….
  2. Police go undercover in Marie Curtis Park, a park that has been known for a place for men to meet other men for consensual sex, and while they are undercover they approach men, solicit them for sex and then arrest them. Read more here
  3. Now we see the police using the STIGMA of HIV and AIDS as an intimidation weapon or tactic, against the public.
  4. Increase in robberies and violence against businesses, employees and community members in the Village.
  5. Increase in homophobic, transphobic behaviour in the Village by patrons of Cannabis Culture towards The Village community members

So while I am not fully on board with Black Lives Matter, the running of the organization or their tactics, some light has been shed on subjects that needed to be lit up.

So I ask these three questions. I posted them when I was really angry on my personal Facebook Timeline but I feel it is important to reach a larger audience in the hopes of shedding some light your way.

  1. How is approaching, already marginalized men, while in street clothes, soliciting them for sex in a sting operation, not unlike the Bath House raids of 1981 helping us?
  2. How is threatening the unlawful seizure of personal property helping us?
  3. How is perpetuating the stigma of HIV & AIDS and using it as a tool of intimidation and spreading LIES, helping us?

Simply. It is not.


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About author


turnipHed is the Chief Editor at TURNIPSTYLE, Presenter & Producer of THE VOICE OF TURNIPSTYLE. The lifestyle magazine and podcast for [GBTQ+] Men.

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