Why The Hell is Supervisor Bevan Dufty the Anonymous Poster Boy For an HIV Drug?
If Bevan Dufty were the frontman for a Hair Club for Men billboard, we'd assume he's bald. So what are we supposed to think when we see the District 8 supervisor as the poster boy for an HIV pill?
Not since Gavin Newsom and Fiona Ma -- the Prom King and Queen of San Francisco politics -- appeared together on a Hepatitis prevention ad right in the wake of Ruby Rippey-Tourk-gate have city politician and a disease been this awkwardly juxtaposed.
Dufty's star turn begs a pair of questions:
- Why isn't his name mentioned on the billboard?
- Does Dufty, the city's most prominent gay politician, have HIV?
"My friends tell me I've been tagged up at certain locations. I understand I've been tagged with 'I'm easy' -- which I guess isn't bad advertising," he notes. "Another one says 'I killed Halloween,' and I guess there's a bow tie in another."
The program Dufty is fronting -- at the behest of the city's Department of Public Health -- is a future study of whether the HIV-treatment drug Truvada can prevent gay or bisexual men from becoming infected in the first place.
And, as far as posing on a billboard that could lead onlookers to believe he's stricken with a life-threatening illness, it hardly rates as one of the more outlandish things he's been asked to do.
"In my first year as a supervisor, I did a butt print for Magnet. Basically, I sat in paint and they posted different butts around the city of people for a program about anal health. Well, they put my print between a drag queen who used a huge, voluptuous fake butt and a porn star, Michael Brandon -- and, basically, his print contained a lot of other information. I think that's the best way to put it," recalls Dufty. "So, I kind of looked bad between the two of them. You get to be humbled a lot in this job."
(You'll notice we refrained from making a joke about Dufty being surrounded by assholes referring to his colleagues on the board).