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Prev Med. 1999 May;28(5):451-7.

Do blacks believe that HIV/AIDS is a government conspiracy against them?

Author information

  • 1Behavioral Health Institute, California State University, 5500 University Parkway, San Bernardino, California 92407, USA. eklonoff@csusb.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

We present the first study to explore the possibility that blacks believe that the human immunodeficiency virus was developed by the federal government in order to exterminate the black population.

METHODS:

Five hundred twenty black adults sampled door to door in 10 randomly selected census tracts completed a written survey in exchange for $10. They indicated their degree of agreement with the statement, "HIV/AIDS is a man-made virus that the federal government made to kill and wipe out black people."

RESULTS:

Twenty-seven percent of blacks held AIDS-conspiracy views and an additional 23% were undecided. Endorsing AIDS-conspiracy beliefs was not related to blacks' age or income but was related to higher levels of education. Blacks who agreed that AIDS is a conspiracy against them tended to be culturally traditional, college-educated men who had experienced considerable racial discrimination.

CONCLUSIONS:

The prevalence and health-related implications of blacks' AIDS-conspiracy beliefs must be fully investigated, and such beliefs must be addressed in culturally tailored, gender-specific AIDS prevention programs for blacks.

Copyright 1999 American Health Foundation and Academic Press.

PMID:
10329334
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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