commoncoll saidJust as American gays are rushing to join the military now that DADT is over, the English gays are storming the blood donation centers to donate blood.
All it is is that gays feel more equal to others. But in reality, it makes no difference.
It's not a discrimination issue. It's a need for blood (especially unique types) but not getting it from a specific type of person because of ignorance.
The ban is not against gays. It is against men who have sex with men. Gays just fall under that category.
Gays don't have special blood. Their unique blood is also present in the rest of the 90-93% of the population where men don't have sex with men. I think the only case you CAN make is discrimination. Because numbers don't support gays being allowed to donate blood. For example, blacks are another high-risk group, but obviously they can't ban them.
America's Blood Center website says 43,000 pints were used in US+Canada. Their website also says that red blood cells (most used component of blood) can be kept for 42 days. Population wise, a little more than 89% of this blood will be used in US. Only 3% of all accidents in Canada and US occur in Canada, and more dangerous surgical procedures take place in US than Canada, but we will use 89%.
So more than 38,270 pints were used in US everyday. In one year, 13,968,550 pints were used.
UCLA estimated that if FDA lifted the ban on MSM (men who have sex with men), 219000 more pints will be available. But keep in mind, not all of this blood will be used. And MSM will have a higher amount of blood wasted than general population. But I don't know what the statistics are here.
With less than 219,000 being added to the 13,968,550 pints already being used, the amount of potential increase in blood available should the FDA lift the ban on MSM is less than 1.5%.
So is it really worth it? Keep in mind that false negative rate for blood testing will be higher for MSM.
I couldn't find estimates of MSM who are HIV+. But the false negative from 13 tests for STDs done should rise less than 1.5% if MSM could donate. Also, calculations are not scientific.