Pulse of the City Spring 2012
Up in the Hollywood Hills, Impulse Group, a group comprised of socially active young gay men in collaboration with AIDS Healthcare Foundation whose purpose is to promote healthier sexual lifestyles using modern social approaches, held a private event called “Pulse of the City” at the Rockstar Mansion above Sunset Plaza, on March 29, 2012.
Vastly different from the killer pool parties and club events Impulse has had prior to, was the setting similar to that of many LGBT benefits. Lavish estate, catered food and an open bar, but what was different was that the benefits were the guests themselves.
Guests were selected and invited based on their commitment to outreach, activism and professionalism within the LGBT community. They were asked to become Impulse Advocates by signing a pledge that they would promote safe sex, HIV awareness and overall health within the community.
In lieu of auctions and donation requests, guests were given an opportunity to hear two guest speakers that at times had some West Hollywood boys at their mercy.
Jason King, a young 26-year-old, native to Los Angeles, bravely came out of woodworks and openly discussed his positive status, for the first time, with the entire 200-plus attendees, many of which were his peers. Jason testified to the burden of not having support and being shamed rather than loved by the gay brotherhood that ceases to exist within the gay community.” When you put ‘clean’ on your adam4adm or Grindr, you may not know who you’re offending—for all you know, your best friend could be positive and you just made him feel dirty.” His ability to show that he was a young, thriving HIV-positive man was a demonstrated that there is light, life and love after positivity.
Ed Wolf, from the We Were Here documentary released in 2011, discussed what it was like in the ’80s to be around the epidemic. “Imagine how it would feel, to go into any bar in West Hollywood tonight or this week and hear that your friends or favorite bartenders are dead. That’s what it was like!” He continued to speak about how there was a movement back then, that there was a gay brotherhood. “People stood up and said this can’t happen to us; that is our history and those who were there are in these hills tonight, in all of us.”