Tennessee Rep. Says It’s ‘Virtually Impossible’ To Contract AIDS Through Heterosexual Sex

Author: January 26, 2012 11:41 pm

Rarely a day goes by anymore when we don’t read a particularly bigoted comment aimed toward the LGBT community. It fills so many headlines that if it wasn’t so terrifying, especially to those who are bullied, it would almost be boring. Just today, our own Mitch Gilbert reported that a Tennessee Rep., John Ragan told him that:

“A person is a heterosexual because of the presence of genitalia of one sex or the other.  No one except a very few with an exceedingly rare congenital deformity have both kinds of genitalia.”

Apparently, biology isn’t required study in Tennessee’s high schools, because another Tennessee GOP lawmaker, Sen. Stacey Campfield said this today (from Raw Story):

“Most people realize that AIDS came from the homosexual community,” he told Michelangelo Signorile, who hosts a radio program on SiriusXM OutQ. “It was one guy screwing a monkey, if I recall correctly, and then having sex with men. It was an airline pilot, if I recall.”

“My understanding is that it is virtually — not completely, but virtually — impossible to contract AIDS through heterosexual sex.”

Of course, Senator Campfield is wrong on all accounts. While the AIDS epidemic in the US was allegedly started through homosexual transmission, heterosexual transmission is increasing. In 2009, the CDC estimated that nearly 13,000 people contracted AIDS through heterosexual contact. In Southern Africa, AIDS is nearly pandemic. Women are especially hard hit.

While it is true that AIDS probably started in the simian world, there is absolutely no evidence that it was transferred to humans through inter-species sexual contact and the likelihood is pretty slim.

The idea that gay men are so indiscriminate in choosing sexual partners that they would have sex with a monkey is simply textbook homophobia. Gay men, like straight men are selective in choosing sexual partners. If they weren’t, it would be simple for them to bow to the bigoted politicians or to the people in their lives who simply don’t get it, and live the straight life. But, Senator Campfield, for most people, sexuality is not that fluid. Gay men were born attracted to men, not monkeys.


facebook comments:


  • “My understanding is that it is virtually — not completely, but virtually — impossible to contract AIDS through heterosexual sex.”

    And the Earth is 6,000 years old… rolling eyes

  • It’s “virtually impossible” to contract AIDS from heterosexual sex? Has he forgotten about the AIDS crisis in Africa? Holy crap. I’m glad this guy isn’t my senator.

  • Dominick J. Di Noto

    I feel sorry for this misguided, will be forever ignorant, person. He does his research on the Internet by seeking out Conservative theories!! I’m surprised he didn’t quote Pat Robertson.

  • PLEASE don’t confuse him with people raised in Tennessee. He’s from NEW YORK. Don’t let him make you think we’re all stupid. PLEASE.

  • Saje Williams

    He’s thinking of LESBIAN sex.

  • Charles McKnight

    My brother in law died of AIDS and I have been working with AIDS patients for 30 years. If homosexuals can contract herpes, heterosexuals can contract AIDS. It is no your position, it is your patener. Yes women are just as likely to transmit AIDS as they are a STD.

  • I have long held that there should be something like the SAT test before people are allowed to run for public office. And the higher the office, the higher score that should be required.

    Before people are allowed to legislate on health issues, they should demonstrate a fairly deep knowledge of medical issues. If they cannot (as in this case) they should not be elected. And then they should be re-tested each year.

  • You Senator, must be an IDIOT!!! Tell my sister, who is straight why she has HIV then? I truly can’t believe that they let someone like YOU in office. You are TRULY a DISGRACE!!!

  • Makes one wonder if he understands what bodily fluids are…

    • Of course he doesn’t understand, but that doesn’t stop him. He’s just like Santorum or Bachman when they stray from their fields of expertise which are…. um, I can’t think of any.

      They pick sources which reinforce their own personally held notions, with no regard to their truthfulness or veracity.

      And there are enough ignorant frothing at the mouth right wing nut cases who will believe them because that crap supports what THEY believe, so it’s a self reinforcing circle of stupidity.

      I wouldn’t care except they do so much harm now that the Republican Party (to which I used to belong until I got sick of the Karl Rove garbage when Shrub was President) has decided that they are the route to taking over the government.

  • This was the response I received from Campfield’s office:

    from: Stacey Campfield [email protected]
    date: Fri, Jan 27, 2012 at 5:28 AM
    subject: RE: Public Health

    Sorry to let you down but here are some cold hard facts…

    Here are a few links with a compilation of facts found elsewhere mostly from the CDC

    On the short lifespan of homosexuals,

    Odds of getting AIDS through vaginal sex


    I admit I am not a historian on AIDS (If you listen to the actual uncut interview I was asked to tell what I had heard was the history of AIDS) The research on sex with a monkey being the first transmitter of AIDS has not been proven nor firmly dis proven. It is one of about 5 theories I was able to find on the source of AIDS. No credible source said any one was clearly definitive one way or the other.
    It was first published I think in a book which documents the history of the AIDS epidemic is entitled “And the Band Played On.” The author of And the Band Played On was appalled by the unsanitary and degrading behavior of homosexuals. He died of AIDS a year after his book was published. The homosexual pilot comment was first printed in the American Journal of medicine article about “Patient 0”. His name was Gaeton Dugas. While possibly not the first person with AIDS he is still widely considered the person who widely transmitted the modern outbreak of the disease.

    Here is a link on that…


    As for the reason for the interview (My bill on parental responsibility of teaching sexuality to very young children) Here are some points of view for you to consider.

    -It is a parents responsibility to decide when a child is ready to grasp such a complex issue as sexuality and what they want to tell the child about that complex subject. Not a teachers.

    – All children develop mentally at different rates. I do not feel a teacher with an agenda (Be it pro
    or con) is the appropriate person to decide “Now is the time” for an entire class of children just because they may think one way or another on an issue and want to espouse it.

    -A teacher is not a trained child psychologist or psychiatrist and could do as much harm as good to a sexually confused child.

    -I doubt many on the other side would want a teacher who said “Homosexuality is evil, dirty and wrong” just because they felt that it was what is appropriate, that it is what they thought the children needed to and were ready to hear. This bill ensures neutrality from teachers.

    -Physically threatening behavior is what is and needs to remain covered for all groups. Not the sexuality of the victim. We already have anti bullying legislation passed in Tennessee (In fact I co sponsored it 2 or 3 years ago when it passed) so all children are protected from bullying in our schools.

    -We do not need an un equal justice system that creates special separate classes of protected people that gets special protection under the law.

    -Nor do we need to silence the first amendment rights of religious free speech of those in our schools whose family may hold different beliefs (as long as those beliefs are not physically threatening).

    -While there is a scientific and educational need to mention the basics of heterosexuality when teaching the basics of reproduction (XY chromosomes, etc.) there is no scientific need to mention homosexuality as homosexuals do not naturally reproduce.

    -We are falling behind the rest of the world in math, science, and English amongst other things. Tennessee ranks about 46th in most areas. Social engineering is just one less issue teachers should have to worry about teaching as part of their curricula.

    Yours in service,

    Sen. Stacey Campfield

    • To the Senator,

      You do realize that you’ve sited a resource from 1988, right?


      • Time stands still for these people. The find a reference they like which includes information they approve of, and then (here’s the important part) they STICK WITH IT. Forever. It doesn’t matter if new information comes to light. It doesn’t matter if old theories are discarded and new ones are created. It doesn’t matter if new research is performed. Find a fact that you like, and it’s yours for life. Once an idea goes into their heads, it never comes out again.

      • “The following numbers are old, and they’re all pretty much guesswork anyway, so take them with a grain of salt. But I venture to say most people in the field would agree with my conclusions.”

        LOL! a sure red flag that he babbles nonsense when the article starts like this.

    • I don’t care what his sources are – he admits that they are only theories among many, yet he quotes them as if they are fact. It is not “virtually impossible” to contract AIDS (he means HIV) during heterosexual sex – it is ACTUALLY POSSIBLE, and likely if one or the other parties is carrying the disease. Just because something is less prevalent in a population doesn’t mean it’s “virtually impossible.” His sorry explanation is pathetically insufficient.

    • for me it’s that he sited wikapedia! i could get on there and update that hiv/aids was first brought to the planet because noah had sex with a unicorn, and then felt weird about it, which is why the unicorns weren’t on the ark… that doesn’t make it fact. it makes it some crap a random person thought up and posted on the internets most unreliable source.
      awesome fact finding, sen. campfield.

    • Carlotta Stomberg

      Wow. I would be embarrassed to expose my ignorance this way – publicly – and so completely misunderstanding biology and science.

    • Holy shit! He’s using WIKIPEDIA as a source? I flunk people for that!

    • LOL! Not only is he citing wikipedia LOL!, but then he misunderstood the 1st amendment. He he states, “-Nor do we need to silence the first amendment rights of religious free speech of those in our schools whose family may hold different beliefs (as long as those beliefs are not physically threatening).” He obviously misinterpreted it, as the First Amendment gives freedom of speech; and, not the freedom to silence other people’s speech because you don’t agree with it. –And, yet, he’s a politician–a senator–and doesn’t even understand the very FIRST amendment of one of our most important government documents. Did he even read it?! That’s like jumping in the cockpit of a fighter jet thinking that you’ll just hit buttons till you figure the thing out….

    • It kills me that he thinks you contract AIDS! AIDS and HIV however related, are two different things. You contract HIV, which has been taking off of the terminally ill list, and if left untreated develops into AIDS. UGH! He’s so stupid!

  • Find a beautiful woman with AIDS and see if hed be willing to have sex with her.

  • I am getting jaded. I know this because I am no longer shocked at the level of ignorance coming from conservatives. It is now expected. “OMG” has turned into “of course”.

  • Oops. WHOSE, not who’s.

  • See that Republican who’s mouth is moving? He’s spouting things he knows nothing about.

    Never listen to a politician that discusses the following issues. They are NOT elected to discuss them. They are elected to work for the gov’t in your place.

    1. Medicine
    2. Religion
    3. Science
    4. Ethics

    Politicians are not your doctor. They are not your priest/rabbi/preacher. They are in politics because they are no longer useful in their profession (Ron Paul and other ex-doctors). They are not philosophers. They are NOTHING MORE THAN YOUR NEIGHBORS WHO YOU ELECTED TO GO TO THE STATEHOUSE.

  • They obviously have the type of spongy brain disease that is a result of having sex with ugly cows (male and female, that type knows no discrimination).

    Research shows this type are born heterosexual, preferring humans, but consciously decide to prefer cows instead.

    Michelle Bachman and her husband were very successful in curing this affliction until they decided they too preferred cows, and refused any treatment for the affliction.

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