Andy Cohen: Don’t stigmatize gay men amid monkeypox crisis-Newshubweek

Andy Cohen: Don't stigmatize gay men amid monkeypox crisis
Written by Arindam

Andy Cohen Dont stigmatize gay men amid monkeypox crisis Newshubweek

TV host Andy Cohen has a message for the media and the government amid the monkeypox outbreak: Don’t stigmatize gay men.

While filming an episode of “Watch What Happens Live” Monday, Cohen shared his thoughts on the monkeypox outbreak, which the World Health Organization recently declared a “public health emergency of international concern.”

Monkeypox is a disease similar to smallpox — though usually milder — with symptoms including fever, aches, swollen lymph nodes, chills, fatigue and a 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’s been an abysmal response from our government so far,” Cohen said, speaking directly to viewers.

“I’m hoping this new order will help our leaders actually deal with this threat and pressure the federal government to deploy badly 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.”

“This is 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 safe and don’t take unnecessary risks,” he added.

While monkeypox is largely spreading among men who have sex with men as well as transgender and nonbinary people, health officials warn that anyone can contract the virus through direct contact with infectious sores, scabs or body fluids, as well as by touching clothing and bedding used by someone with the illness.

On Monday, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency in California over the spread of monkeypox in an effort to “bolster the state’s vaccination efforts.”

“I call on everyone in the government and the media to not stigmatize our community, which is already under attack from many who’d rather use us as a scapegoat than help us,” Cohen continued in his PSA.

“And if you’re not a gay man, you might think this doesn’t affect you now, but this is everyone’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.”

Times staff writer Taryn Luna contributed to this report.

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