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Q: Magic Johnson ( Answered 5 out of 5 stars,   0 Comments )
Subject: Magic Johnson
Category: Sports and Recreation > Trivia
Asked by: luckeyme-ga
List Price: $2.50
Posted: 04 Jun 2004 17:12 PDT
Expires: 04 Jul 2004 17:12 PDT
Question ID: 356618
OK, I'm confused- is he or is he NOT HIV positive? It was announced
that he was when I was in high school, and I'm 30 years old. He looks
hale and hearty to me. My husband is convinced that it was a way to
get across the seriousness of AIDS to the masses. What is his current
medical condition?
Subject: Re: Magic Johnson
Answered By: tutuzdad-ga on 04 Jun 2004 18:25 PDT
Rated:5 out of 5 stars
Dear luckeyme-ga;

Thank you for allowing me an opportunity to answer your interesting question.

Earvin ?Magic? Johnson, Jr. announced that he had contracted HIV, the
virus that often (but not always) leads to the disease known as AIDS,
on November 7, 1991 and retired from professional basketball. He later
attempted some brief professional comebacks (1992-93 and 1995-96
seasons) and even did a stint as the Lakers head coach in 1994 and
tried his hand at hosting a talk show, both of which failed miserably.

In 2001, some ten years after his initial announcement, Johnson
reported he was doing remarkably well. While he shared everyone else?s
sentiment this HIV was a death sentence (and many thought it was back
then) he and his doctors are quite pleased with his state of health
thus far.


The world was in shock that day as one of our national sports icons
tendered the sobering news while his long-time friend, basketball
great Larry Bird, stood just off camera by his side and openly and
inconsolably wept. Such a devastating announcement on national
television at the height of one?s glorious career ? equivalent to
saying he?d be dead in a very short time - is not consistent with any
marketing hoax of modern times. In fact, at the time, it would have
also been equivalent to announcing he was a leper, as a vast majority
of the world tended to treat HIV positive people. Of course, we don?t
have access to his medical records or a blood test, but suffice it to
say that the stigma associated with this disease alone in those early
years would undoubtedly have prevented even the most desperate of
people (much less a superstar like Johnson) from confessing that he
contracted HIV if it weren?t true. Furthermore, it goes beyond reason
to fall for a conspiracy theory that would even comes close to
suggesting the any man would give up hundreds of millions of dollars,
his career, his fame, his reputation, and yes, even his friends to
some degree, for the sake of a marketing hoax related to AIDS or any
other cause. It seems clear that Johnson?s motivation must be genuine.

In 1997 Johnson's physicians, Dr. David Ho and Dr. Michael Mellman,
said in a statement that due to a strict treatment regimen HIV was
virtually undetectable in Magic?s body at that time:

?Earvin is doing very well. However, we must emphasize that
`undetectable' doesn't equal ?absent?.?

?''My concern is that people are going to think that Magic Johnson is
the only person this is happening to, that he's cured, that there's a
cure for AIDS, therefore, I don't have to worry about being
infected,'' said Lee Klosinski, director of education at AIDS Project
Los Angeles. ''I hope people get the message about how important
treatment is.''


The truth is, Magic Johnson is clearly NOT the only person who has
experienced this phenomenon:

?Nearly 90 percent of the people who take the powerful drugs within a
few months of being diagnosed HIV-positive have undetectable levels
similar to Johnson's condition, said Dr. Jeffrey Laurence, an AIDS
researcher at Cornell Medical Center and a consultant to the American
Foundation for AIDS Research.?

Magic Johnson could arguably be one of the wealthiest Americans on
record, but he  has voluntarily forsaken his own career and has since
raised hundreds of millions of dollars for his MAGIC JOHNSON
FOUNDATION (and other organizations) in it?s ongoing fight for a cure
for AIDS in an effort to help those who suffer from the disease. By
all accounts, although there may be some disbelievers, Johnson is
indeed HIV positive. By helping others with his fame and fortune, he
might, in the process, find a cure for himself too.


Finally I would add this: If a superstar were intended to be thrust
into the limelight as the life-long world spokesman for AIDS in part
of some grand conspiracy to generate global interest in the tragedy,
wouldn?t it seem reasonable that his future coaching career and talk
show efforts would have succeeded and every famous person who also
contracted the diseases would have joined the conspiracy? They didn?t,
and like many of yesterday?s superstars, Magic Johnson has faded
somewhat from our collective memories and other more current and
measurably more famous people have announced they too have been
infected in the years since without doing nearly as much as this man
has for his determined mission.

There are those who would argue that the world was not coming to an
end if it split in two tomorrow and the two halves drifted apart into
space. Yes, unfortunately, as much as we?d all like to deny it, we
must accept as truth the fact that The Great Magic Johnson has HIV.
Why? Because he SAID he does, and he?s given up virtually everything
to combat it. I ask you logically, WHO, in his right mind would agree
to do that FOR LIFE if it weren?t so? It would be a sad testament to
human sympathy indeed for him to have to die from it in order for us
to believe it.

Below you will find that I have carefully defined my search strategy
for you in the event that you need to search for more information. By
following the same type of searches that I did you may be able to
enhance the research I have provided even further. I hope you find
that my research exceeds your expectations. If you have any questions
about my research please post a clarification request prior to rating
the answer. Otherwise, I welcome your rating and your final comments
and I look forward to working with you again in the near future. Thank
you for bringing your question to us.

Best regards;
Tutuzdad ? Google Answers Researcher


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luckeyme-ga rated this answer:5 out of 5 stars and gave an additional tip of: $1.00
Thank you. I agree that the "conspiracy theory" is far-fetched, but
I've watched people go from freshly diagnosed as HIV positive to dead
of AIDS, within a couple of years. His remarkable health just seems
rather suspect. Your answer definitely exceeded my expectations, both
in how quickly it was answered, and how thorough. Thanks again.

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