These inclusion criteria were applied to all participants including those described in these analyses. At baseline, participants provided consent, completed both the quantitative surveys via Audio CASI system ACASI , and the qualitative interview under the guidance of a trained research associate. ACASI uses a computer and voice recordings to administer survey items so that the participant hears through headphones and sees on the screen each question and response list.
Recent studies have shown that ACASI increases the proportion of individuals admitting sexual behaviors and illicit drug use Des Jarlais, ;. ACASI ,. HIV status was also confirmed at this time. Those who self-reported a seropositive status provided proof of this status i. Participants returned two weeks later for their results. As noted earlier, HIV status was also confirmed.
Use of the drug was measured via a drug use scale developed for a previous study by the investigative team Halkitis et al. In this scale, individuals were asked to provide frequency of use in two ways: The Likert-scale data were converted to dichotomies use, no use for analytic purposes. In addition, participants were asked to identify other illicit and prescribed drugs that they had used in conjunction with methamphetamine via a checklist for the period of assessment. These included: The period of recall was 4 months.
To assess reasons for use the Inventory of Methamphetamine Using Situations was utilized. Turner et al.
Participants also were asked to identify on a 5-point Likert scale the frequency with which they had used methamphetamine during the 4-month period of assessment in the following seven contexts: Ensuing analyses examined person-level differences between Black men who utilized methamphetamine as compared to those who did not use the substance. All analyses were undertaken utilizing bivariate and non-parametric procedures. Of these men assessed at baseline, The other users identified as follows: White It should be noted that these proportions approximated the overall composition of the entire sample where As is shown, the Black methamphetamine users did not differ from the others in terms of sexual orientation.
This rate differed significantly from the self-reported use among Whites In addition, the geographic distribution of Black methamphetamine users indicated that these men resided in different parts of New York City, and in neighborhoods that are not traditionally gay. This map is shown in Figure 1. As poly-drug use is a common phenomenon among gay and bisexual men, use of methamphetamine in relation to other drugs that were used in combination with it were examined.
No statistical differences were noted along racial lines for combining methamphetamine with cocaine, GHB, rohypnol, alcohol, barbiturates, crack cocaine, hallucinogens, heroin, or inhalant nitrates. Also significant is the finding that while Additionally, only Similarly, only While not statistically significant, using methamphetamine to avoid physical discomfort and to avoid conflict with others, and use of the drug at home alone approached significance with Black men endorsing these reasons and context at a slightly higher level.
Analysis of Black methamphetamine users and Black non-methamphetamine users revealed that they did not differ significantly along key factors. In addition, significant differences in sexual orientation, educational level and income were not apparent when comparing Black methamphetamine users to non-users. Since the focus of the study was on five club drugs, the use of the drugs other than methamphetamine in our sample of Black men was explored. Upon further analysis, of the 66 Black men in the study, 29 In fact, across all of the Black men, cocaine use was reported by As concerns regarding methamphetamine abuse continue to grow in the United States Rawson et al.
Since little is known or has been documented about this matter, an analysis of the usage patterns of methamphetamine from our longitudinal investigation of club drug using gay and bisexual men was undertaken. Our findings indicate that a substantial proportion of Black club drug using gay and bisexual men use methamphetamine as one of the drugs in their repertoire.
Although usage rates are lower among the Black men in relation to the White men in our study, the proportion of Black men in the study overall is equivalent to the proportion of methamphetamine users who are Black, suggesting that there is definitive use in the Black population, that might be somewhat masked given the small percentage of Black men in the study sample.
In addition, no substantial differences in frequency of use or motivations for use are noted among the methamphetamine users of varying races and ethnicities. However, the data presented here may under-represent the current levels of use among Black men given the historical epoch in which the data were being collected, This idea is further supported by our geographic representations of these users, which indicates that the Black men do not reside in predominantly White gay neighborhoods, but rather in predominantly Black neighborhoods.
Kurtz, ; Newmeyer, , yet the data presented here suggest that the Black methamphetamine-using men in this investigation may not only reside outside these contexts but may also navigate in non-traditional gay social circles. Findings gathered here also suggest that methamphetamine use among Black gay and bisexual men belongs to a larger repertoire of poly-drug use.
These men also use a variety of other substances recreationally, such as alcohol, cocaine, and inhalant nitrates.
However, the Black methamphetamine-using men in our sample were less likely to combine use of this drug with Viagra, ketamine, and Ecstasy. These patterns may be due to socialization pathways and drug use initiation patterns specific to Black community members of New York City. It also is interesting to note that when we further considered the drug use of the Black subsample, there was a high likelihood that men used cocaine and not methamphetamine, but a very low likelihood that they used methamphetamine and not cocaine.
This idea is consistent with other analyses that we have undertaken Halkitis et al. Finally, our findings indicate that the Black men using methamphetamine are not different in any substantive demographic manner from Black men who indicated no use of the drug. Both groups used a wide repertoire of other substances and were similar along key demographic lines, including age and HIV status. These findings suggest that Black methamphetamine users are not a specialized sub-section of the Black gay and bisexual drug using populations and, as noted earlier, are not necessarily only those Black men who are immersed in White gay culture and context.
As is the case with any study that utilizes self-report to capture behavioral data, the issue of social desirability may affect our findings. However, given our use of ACASI technology and our reputation as trustworthy researchers working with the gay community, we have confidence in the relative accuracy of the data that we collected. With regard to the poly-drug use patterns, we did capture data on simultaneous use of the drugs with methamphetamine; however we did not capture the relative frequency of such combinations within the period of assessment, and thus cannot disentangle combinations that were used one time, a few times, or often.
Our analyses were based on a sample of gay and bisexual club drug using men who had a minimum of six instances of club drug use in the year prior to baseline assessment. Thus the ability to generalize this knowledge to the gay community overall is very low. These findings must be viewed as those relating to a subset of gay and bisexual men who, by their own admission, have high levels of drug use.
Furthermore, it should be noted that the data that we have captured are embedded in a historical context i. Historically, cocaine was a substance that had been used widely in New York City Fuller et al. More recent data suggest somewhat more elevated patterns of use of methamphetamine Halkitis et al. Therefore, more nuanced questions capturing the cultural experience of Black men with regard to methamphetamine use could not be undertaken.
We are currently undertaking this more focused study to understand the issues of culture and identity, which may help to further illuminate the roles that methamphetamine play in the lives of Black gay and bisexual men. Finally, within this convenience sample, the sub-sample of Black men is relatively small.
Thus, the findings must be considered in light of the fact that the sample is not necessarily representative of Black club-drug-using men. The patterns of methamphetamine use described here, when coupled with the recently reported rates of HIV infection among BMSM, suggest a potentially dangerous condition. Given the disproportionate impact of HIV on the Black population, even low levels of methamphetamine use in this segment of the population can cause high levels of damage.
While the work presented here documents the patterns of methamphetamine use in a Black subsample of users, further, more-enumerated investigations are needed to more fully capture the intrapersonal, cultural, and contextual factors that predispose Black gay and bisexual men to use of methamphetamine.
We thank Marty McDonough for his assistance with the geographical mapping. Publisher's Disclaimer: This is a PDF file of an unedited manuscript that has been accepted for publication.
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See other articles in PMC that cite the published article. On the small screen, however, networks made a greater push for racial diversity in television with shows like Black-ish , Fresh Off The Boat , Empire , Jane the Virgin , Cristela and Telenovela receiving glowing reviews.
On and off the Great White Way, theatregoers have experienced the most diverse season in years with productions like Allegiance , Hamilton , Eclipsed , Skeleton Crew , Pageant: While many note the need for further progress, a slight-but-present trend, nonetheless, has found its way to the theatrical stage this season: Frustrated with not seeing characters that reflect his own upbringing, Porter, who earned the Tony Award for his portrayal of the show-stopping drag artist Lola in the Broadway hit musical Kinky Boots, began to pen his own material.
With a cast that included Lillias White and S.
Other writers who have joined the fray like Aurin Squire, Travis Tate or Rick Watkins, deal with the paradoxes of inclusion and the political processes of what it means to be a gay person of color. Billy Porter, myself, and a few other writers of color who are gay, as well, whose work just kind of landed at the same time. Matthews, who penned the musical with collaborator and partner Matt Gould , notes why it was absolutely vital that the musical have a nonwhite protagonist. Through his experience with the show, helmed by Tony-winning director Diane Paulus Pippin , Matthews realized how much power the creatives have, especially in the casting of their show.
Taken from his own experiences, the docu-fiction musical chronicles a closeted actor who leaves New York City to volunteer in a Ugandan village and teach orphans with limited access to education. Although the show received mixed reviews, it tackles the experience of being a gay interracial couple in an inter-faith relationship, blackness as it is viewed locally and abroad, as well as intimacy, masculinity and religion.
Matthew expressed that he and Gould were disheartened by reviews despite audience reaction. With a few recent productions shining a light on these characters and subjects, many of the writers expressed need for more unique voices, especially from LGBT women, and a bigger public platform in theatre, film and TV to be considered progress.
Signifying in contemporary black gay literature," author Charles I. As a musical writer, Jackson also senses this. The fifth season of the sitcom ended with its characters mounting a community theatre production of the musical. Trivia About Brother to Brothe Towards an Understanding of Postmodern Transformations of Sexuality".
That feeling of readiness was more or less echoed from each of the writers, all of whom desire more opportunity to see multifaceted, complex and emotionally colorful humanity in diverse characters. The need to create opportunities for actors and more voices in stories compels Matthews in his writing. Narratives about black men killing each other can get green-lit in an instant.