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In particular, Rap-It-Up seeks to reach out to BET’s younger demographic, especially as African-American teens (ages thirteen to nineteen) accounted for sixty-six percent of newly-reported AIDS cases among youth in 2003 even though they represent only fifteen percent of U. It has used (and continues to explore) every conceivable means—PSAs featuring musical artists and edgy vignettes, news programs, on-line content, special events around the country, classroom curricula, a toll-free sexual health hotline—to relay accurate information about sexual health and connect the pandemic with hearts and minds.One of the grass-roots campaign’s most engaging platforms is its Rap-It-Up Teen Forums, which travel to urban markets to reach out to younger people about social issues with a particular focus on HIV/AIDS in the African-American community, with support from a local cable affiliate or radio station.Last August, he headed to the International AIDS Conference in Toronto to screen and discuss his costarring role in Let’s Talk, a film made from one of the winning scripts of 2005’s Rap-It-Up/Black AIDS Short Subject film competition, and was glad for this chance to make a difference.“I’m West Indian, and there’s a large West Indian community there [in Toronto] and I think it’s important to reach out to as many different communities and as many different ethnicities as possible, so I always look forward to going to different parts of the country because I know there’s going to be a different target audience.” Though some things remain the same from event to event—on-site HIV testing, plenty of educational materials, panel discussions—the teen forums are anything but routine.Rucker has been on five Teen Forum panels—most recently at York College and, before that, at Palm Beach Community College in Florida—since becoming more formally involved in the campaign this year.
’ ‘Are we going to go the distance or is this just someone to be in my life so I can say I have a man and I won’t be stigmatized on Valentine’s Day? Friend of mine, actually, when I said that was my plan, tears actually filled up in his eyes. Listen, to go out to a dinner, to go to a concert, to hang out with someone and get to know them, you never know how things are going to go. Date kind of like men date and stop treating every relationship like it’s going to lead to matrimony. But if not, then you’ve already got something fabulous planned.As an actor we have to take responsibility about images, the lyrics, choreography.