Two years later, Giampetruzzi offered an overview of "AIDS in Maine, 2005," looking at unsafe sex, methamphetamine use in the gay community, and "post-exposure prophylaxis, a one-month regimen of the so-called HIV drug cocktail that can be as much as 80 percent effective in knocking the virus out of your system before it nestles in for the rest of your, and its, life."
Last fall, artist David Kish attended the 17th International AIDS Conference in Mexico City, and in an October article, examined the ongoing scientific battles to fight AIDS.
These days, we're looking at GLBTQ considerations from a political standpoint. Just as we did with the Maine Won't Discriminate campaign in 2005, and other pro-equality pushes over the years, the Phoenix is following closely the fight to give same-sex couples in Maine the right to marry.
"Assuming that the question does go out to Maine citizens at some point or another, pro-marriage activists have the advantage of a somewhat well-oiled populace," I wrote earlier this year, in an article about the legislative debate over gay marriage. "After all, this is the same mass of voters that has considered (or elected leaders to consider) such questions as discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, insurance benefits for same-sex partners, and adoption rights for gay families. Advocates can only hope that Mainers will see the same light when it comes to gay marriage."
We ran our first-ever Portland's Most Influential special section on July 19, 2002. Over the years, we've highlighted Portland movers and shakers such as: housing guru Mark Adelson; Karin Anderson of the Maine Women's Fund; Rena Masten of the Portland Downtown District; Rippleffect founder Aaron Frederick; SPACE co-founder Todd Bernard; Martha Putnam of Farm Fresh Connection; sex-toy saleswoman Gina Rourke; social activist Rachel Talbot Ross; and many more. Look for an updated version of this finger-on-the-pulse feature in a future issue of the Phoenix.
Warming and windmills
It's sad to say that not much has changed since Alex Irvine wondered in November 2003 whether he could built a small-scale wind-energy installation in his backyard. It was too expensive, but the investigation led him to some interesting conclusions about alleviating global warming on a larger scale.
"So here we are again at the global-versus-local crux," Irvine wrote, sagely foreshadowing how the green-energy debate would develop over the years. "I can't build a workable windmill in Portland (although maybe you can, moneybags), but my inner utopian still wants to support the development of wind energy.
"It comes down to a balance of externalities, some of which are global and some local: On the wind side you have some dead birds, visual degradation of the landscape, road and power-line building, and a whooshing noise; on the coal side you have acid rain, strip mining, and smog. Is one vista along the Appalachian Trail worth more than 600,000 pounds of emissions removed daily from the air, even if that air isn't in Maine?
"Get used to this question. Endless Energy and Evergreen Windpower won't be the last companies that force you to ask it."
Indeed, check out Mike Miliard's and my package from just a few weeks ago, showing that many of these issues have yet to be resolved, even as greenhouse-gas emissions increase.