Las Vegas has been calling on the kindness of its citizens to donate blood after the horrendous events from the Las Vegas shooting left hundreds of concert-goers hospitalized. Strict rules, however, forbid some from donating- even if the rule is something as ridiculous and outdated as sexual orientation, as Lance Bass found out.
Former ‘NSync star and game show host Lance Bass tried to donate blood to victims of the Las Vegas shooting and was turned down because he is gay. The Food and Drug Administration maintains that any man who has had sex with another man within the past year is not allowed to donate blood. The FDA previously posted a lifetime ban on homosexual donors, but in 2015 they revised the regulation to have the probation only last one year.
The FDA’s rule does not give any leeway for gay men who are married or in a monogamous relationship, either. Lance Bass has been married to his husband, Michael Turchin, since 2014.
Understandably, Bass was quite peeved about the FDA’s refusal to allow him to donate blood to the Las Vegas victims who so badly need it. He took to Twitter to make a statement, saying, “How is it STILL illegal for gays to donate blood??!! I want to donate and I’m not allowed.”
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The following day, Bass posted an image of the Las Vegas strip accompanied by an inspiring quote from nightclub owner Barbara Poma. A fan commented on the post suggesting that he donate blood, to which Bass responded, “I can’t. I’m gay.”
“Finding words to convey the depth of horror we are all witnessing in Las Vegas is just impossible. It is unimaginable that another mass shooting of even greater scope than that of Pulse Nightclub could occur again in this country, but indeed, it has. We must work harder to stop these crimes that destroy human life. We pray for those whose lives were taken, as well as for the wounded and the hundreds who will forever be affected by this monumental tragedy.” Barbara Poma: Pulse Nightclub Owner
30 Rock actor Jeffery Self posted a similar tweet in opposition to the ban, saying, “So very right on and I’m gonna do all these things. Except give blood. I would but I can’t. I’m a gay American.”
So very right on and I'm gonna do all these things. Except give blood. I would but I can't. I'm a gay American. https://t.co/7hS48vENHN
— Jeffery Self (@JefferySelf) October 3, 2017
The FDA ban on gay men donating blood is completely archaic. It is ridiculous that it is 2017, a time when gay men and women are allowed to get married in numerous states, but they cannot donate blood. The Williams Institute conducted a study in 2014 that concluded that not only is the ban completely discriminatory, but lifting the ban could save many lives and allow for an additional 600,000 pints of blood to be donated each year. Come on now, FDA.
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