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Stars never die of AIDS | MyPetPeeves.com

Stars never die of AIDS

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So Charles Nelson Reilly dies and the cause of death is complications from pneumonia, that is - according to the press (maybe the doctor fed them that crap, the press don't have to buy it).

Mr. Reilly was gay. He died of pneumonia? How many times have we heard of gay stars dying of pneumonia? None of them ever seem to die of AIDS. For a while they did but now it's always "complications from pneumonia".

It just so happens that AIDS victims often do get, and die from, a fatal form of pneumonia. Why not just come right out and say he died of AIDS?

The "died of complications from AIDS" was the first step in moving away from "he/she died of AIDS". Remember that, back in the late 80's? Then they started saying it was from pneumonia. And now it's not even that anymore. Now it's they died from "complications from pneumonia".

Isn't all that a little like saying a soldier died of complications from an IED when his body was blown into lots of neat little tiny pieces? First of all it's not a cute little "improvised" device. It's a bomb. B O M B. Changing the name does not change the facts. It's all about manipulating public perception so that people will be better able to stomach what's actually happening which is so horrible. We wouldn't want to upset anyone with the facts now would we?

The strangest thing about this to me is that Charles Nelson Reilly was in no way a closet gay. He was about as open as they get short of running down the street in a pink tutu flapping his arms (and I wouldn't doubt he did that a few times too). He actually often fought very publicly for gay rights and for AIDS awareness. Wouldn't he, of all people, want everyone to know what he really died of rather than trying to cover it up as if in shame?

I'm straight but don't like coverups of any kind. They mask problems. Problems need to be solved. Sweep them under the carpet and they fester and we all ultimately suffer. Call it what it is. ** Admitting there's a problem is the first step to solving it. **

Comments

There's a parallel her ...

There's a parallel her with multiple sclerosis. Some people have acute symptoms for most of their adult lifes. Others may walk around for years (months? - I'm not an expert.) with minimal or no symptoms. As an autoimmune disease, it can increase the risk of other diseases such as pneumonia, and die from it. So what did the person die of - MS or pneumonia?

I believe the medical term ...

I believe the medical term if I remember correctly from my old job is pneumocystis carinii. It is a test that came in very seldom at my old job, a lab, and it was for people who had AIDS. I forget exactly what it tested for but I think it was pneumonia. I just happen to read that reilly had died right when I signed on the internet and I came here and saw your peeve, that is so weird. I remember seeing him on TV and boy WAS he gay! pink tutu and all!! LOL!
and response to the above comment pnemonia would be a side effect of the disease. Had it not been for the disease, the pneumonia MAY NOT have killed them, aids or ms. to quote the unforgettable icon from TV, GI Joe:
KNOWING IS HALF THE BATTLE!! LOL!

MS is not a fatal disease. ...

MS is not a fatal disease. It's chronic, progressive and debilitating, but not fatal in and of itself.

I had to go google this ...

I had to go google this person, and now I know why..He was popular a little before my time...just a bit. They never disclose the real reason that the stars die, unless it is the biggest scandle and gets good ratings. Exploit the death for ratings, sounds humane enough...yeah right. Normally, or so in the past when a person who has tried to battle the cause for AIDS, like been in the rallys, funded research, etc. they WANT it known that they "died fighting the battle with AIDS as they fought so hard for the awarenss of the disease." Not to sound crass, but normally it is only the gay/lesbian crowd that don't mind it being known they died of AIDS. A straight person in hollywood would not want it being know they even had a AIDS test done....The point of that is that one is making light of their death to a desease, STILL trying to raise awareness.....he other still hiding from it.
Ed, when you said he ran down the street in his pink tutu, I couldn't help but think of ACE VENTURA..when he is trying to get committed to the insane asylum...he had a pink tutu over shorts and a t shirt.... LOL :)

Umm does anyone know for ...

Umm does anyone know for sure that he even had AIDS? Its common for those who suffer from AIDS to die of pneumonia but its also common for someone on 77 yrs to die from it as well. Not all gay men have AIDS, being Charles was 77 yrs old I doubt he had AIDS.

I agree with you about how ...

I agree with you about how they come up with cause of death. My mom's death certificate states she had passed from respiratory failure. It doesn't say anything about her having or dying from spinal cancer. The only problem I do have about your rant is the fact that you have assumed just because he was gay he also had AIDS. Do we know forsure if he had AIDS? Not all gay men contract AIDS. I haven't seen anything on the web or in the press that states he had AIDS. I even looked up his partner Patrick Hughes (III), who had been partners with Mr. Reilly since 1981/82 when they met on the game show Battlestars, and it has no mention of him having AIDS either. You know it is possible that he died from complications of pneumonia due to emphysema or some other lung disease, I do recall him being a smoker, when he was on The Match Game and other numerous game shows. But to say he had AIDS because he was a gay man isn't fair, straight men get AIDS too.

rkinne01 and SSB are both ...

rkinne01 and SSB are both correct. There isn't anything I've been able to find either that says Reilly or his partner had AIDS and straight men do get it too. Of course it is more prevalent in gays.

But consider this when you have doubts he could have had AIDS because of his age. This is first hand knowlege of a famous man who I had the great privilege of working with. For privacy reasons I'll call him Michael. He died recently of cancer. Anyway, Michael was openly gay for about the last 25 years. I finally had the good fortune of working with him, top in his field in the world, and he was very close to Reilly's age when he died. That's important because as recently as 5-7 years ago, when he was in his late sixties, on the way back from a day's work, Michael "hit on me". He too had a very longtime partner. That partner even "hit on me". When I told him I was straight his response was "Oh, a virgin!" Michael was a little more tactful when I turned him down. Both were clearly promiscuous though. And Michael even told me about how amazing these new drugs like Viagra are. So they certainly can get AIDS at an older age and new treatments for it allow people to live with it for decades whereas earlier they'd often die in a matter of months or a few short years after being diagnosed.

The last two stars that i ...

The last two stars that i can remember died of Aids are Rock hudson and Freddy Mercury, but i am not sure what the official diagnosis was. Most people that have cancer or Aids dont have that disease listed as cause of death. Usually it is a complication from this disease.
Kinds like it isnt the bullett that killed, it was the bloodloss that did

Saw Queen perform from ...

Saw Queen perform from front row once and from fourth row another time. I even caught and managed to cut off a piece of his scarf that he threw into the audience. Everyone was fighting for it or at least a piece of it (the thing would NOT rip, what a struggle). That was a long time ago and before he was known to be gay. I remember listening to their music before anyone I knew had heard of them. Like with the Cars, I had seen them and had their first album but no one I knew had a clue. A year later they were selling out the Spectrum stadium in PA for $60 a ticket (real money back then, about $120 in today's money) and I had seen them from 3rd row in a tiny theater for $1.98

Back to the topic though. I really don't care about what a person does behind closed doors. I just don't need to know about it or hear about it or have it all in my face with those gay "affectations" any more than I need heterosexuals making nonstop references to what they do in bed. I wouldn't want either one around my son or my parents. That's my benchmark for what's acceptable. In a performance or among friends, it's a different situation. Every day, out in public, I could do without the promiscuity. Maybe that's what's going on with these guys. They're thinking the real C.O.D. would betray their lifestyle which is not something everyone needs to know.

AIDS patients, prior to ...

AIDS patients, prior to their death, they make the choice of how their death notice should read...ie...the choice of complications due from AIDS or complications due from pnuemonia...
while i suspect mr charles nelson reilly was HIV+....and his body could no longer tolerate the HIV drugs...they do have a finite period of time when they just quit working...as all of our bodies do...we are all programmed to die...his program if he was HIV+, was cut short...and to be sick for over a year...i think the obvious is OBVIOUS...and if he did have AIDS...im sorry he chose not to come clean with the news one way or the other...
and in his defense...he was never in the closet while alive...why keep this his health status in a closet...? dunno...
but...its hollywood, his decade of friends that were gay, in the business that have died of AIDS....and he had many...dack rambo, rock hudson, and the list goes on...most of them stayed in the closet with their health...save it be ROCK HUDSON...
Lets us all wish him Peace and may GOD rest his soul into the Eternities...

A more frequent euphemism ...

A more frequent euphemism found in obituaries is that the deceased had passed away after a "lengthy illness." Usually it means cancer.

I didn't know it was ...

I didn't know it was possible for anyone not to know Freddy Mercury was gay from day one. I don't care though Queen rocks.

Why else would you call ...

Why else would you call your band Queen, unless they were from Queens. No never saw them in concert, I am only 25, but fat bottom girls and bicycle are the best song ever..... I was just looking for their cd's the other day.My mom stole my best of cd's a few years ago, and just returned them scratched to hell and unplayable!

Remember, I was a fan of ...

Remember, I was a fan of the band long before they were even popular. We're talking about the early 70's. There were no videos out, nothing but album covers, no concerts in our area yet either. The name did make me wonder a little but they were from London after all. It didn't take long to figure it out of course. I guess at first I thought Mercury's macho look was just that not him being "butch" in a gay way. I hadn't even heard of masculine gays back then and he had a very masculine physique. It's not as if I was all that naiive, it was different back then. I was a middle schooler too. No doubts after seeing him concert, plent of doubts before that, but it sure didn't change my mind about their music.

One thing people should know by the way is that there is possible physical danger from listening to We Will Rock You too much or too loud. The boom-boom, boom beat is exactly the reverse of the heart beat which goes boom, boom-boom. The heart can supposedly be affected by it because if you play both sounds (the forward and backward) together simoutaneously it sounds like boom-boom-boom-boom etc. with no pause. That's supposed to be able to throw your heart beat off rythm and cause damage to it, even bring on a heart attack. Remember their song from early years called Sheer Heart Attack? I don't think the heart beat thing was accidental. Anyway, the band even believed in this theory and didn't want to hurt themselves so they stopped playing it in concert.

I don't know the song ...

I don't know the song Sheer Heart Attack, but the album by that name has been a favorite of mine for 30 years now. (Yes, I'm giving away my age). The only commercial song on it is "Killer Queen" but the whole album is great.

That thing about "We Will Rock You" affecting your heart sounds like one of those internet hoax myths.

Eazy-E, a rapper, died of ...

Eazy-E, a rapper, died of AIDS around the time Freddie did, just to add to what connie said.

Many years ago in the ...

Many years ago in the early 1960s, Liberace who was, without a doubt, gay, gay, gay was outted by a tabloid and the weird part was that he sued them for slander and defamation of character and WON. This was back when he was still in the closet. His closet must have had a glass door! Considering his persona, how he was able to conceal his homosexuality I have no idea!

If you've read any of ...

If you've read any of Armistead Maupin's "Tales of the City" (wonderful human books about all kinds of relationships), you'll see how the gay characters read the newspapers upon some famous actor's death and they'd agree that this one was HIV-positive and that one wasn't... it was all coded.

I believe they can be more up-front about it now. Of course Charles Nelson Reilly was gay, but I don't know if it was HIV-related. I'm sure everyone in the industry knew. He hadn't worked in many years, so I doubt he would have cared if he was "outed."

If it's true and it was surpressed, I am sorry...I thought we'd all grown up a bit more by now. He was a funny man (specially on game shows, the like of which doesn't much exist now) and usually made me laugh.