10/06/2012 11:25 am ET Updated Feb 02, 2016

Gay Men And Blood Donations: Why It's Still Taboo

I gave blood in the caucus room. That sounds like a Bob Dylan song, but it's actually a description of my experience donating blood to the Red Cross at the U.S. House of Representatives this summer. The bruise on my arm has healed, but the injury to my sense of justice has not. In the weeks following my donation, I have been preoccupied by the fact that while I as a heterosexual woman am encouraged to give blood, others are barred from making the same vital contribution. If I were a man who had sex with another man after 1977, I would have been turned away.

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