Feral Beral on Michael Neal

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The late Adam Winsor aka Feral Beral, standing against HIV stigma

Following the recent sudden death of Adam Winsor, I was browsing the web, reading about the phenomenon he created, Feral Beral. I never knew Adam personally, but like most gay Melburnians, I could hardly fail to be aware of Beral. I meant to say something about his passing, and then thought, as someone who had only ever seen him from afar at Pride marches and the like, the job was better left to those who knew him best.

In my researches I was shocked to discover Adam had known Michael Neal, and had written about it. I reproduce the piece, unedited, below. I think it shows wonderful thoughtfulness and compassion, and remarkable greatness of spirit, and also gives us a glimpse of the real Michael Neal, too.

Rest in Peace Adam. I’m sorry now I never got to know you.

Hi,

I have had sex with this man, I am hiv positive but he did not infect me. At the time he seemed reasonably attractive ( i like older men) and when we had sex we always used condoms. Even when we both had hiv, we still continued to use condoms.

 

Maybe he liked me and wanted to protect me. I do not know, i have seen this man in a kind light, i know he is evil and what he has done to other people is wrong but i feel sorry him, he must have hated himself so much to do what he has done. Also the gay men involved with this man and i am one of them all need to get together and talk about it and try to heal. Obviously he lied to us all.

 

Seperating predators who give hiv is needed if can proven and also as the old saying goes, it takes 2 tangoe is needed, everyone these days must ask if u are hiv or any other sti just for your own sake and use condoms EVERYTIME regardless if you are straight or gay.

 

Sure if you hate me cause i am honest and have hiv and want to seperate me, i’ll gladly live on an island with other people with the disease, it might be a better life as long as the treatment provided for the disease is handed out.

 

I can honestly say since becoming infected with hiv, i now look after my health better, my relationships with my partner of 15 years, my family and friends, they all know and to be honest having hiv dosnt bother me, i dont care who gave it to me, i fucked up and didnt use protection with someone and got it, so what, big deal, the real problem is the poor heterosexual women who have bi partners that sleep with other men unprotected and then infect their wives/ partners etc.

 

So many would be out there who simply would just have never had a reason to get an hiv test. I urge everyone to get one. Micheal Neal may the healing circle begin.

Peace

Adam Winsor ( aka Feral Beral)

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About the author

Veteran gay writer and speaker, Doug was one of the founders of the UKs pioneering GLBTI newspaper Gay News (1972) , and of the second, Gay Week, and is a former Features Editor of Him International. He presented news and current affairs on JOY 94.9 FM Melbourne for more than ten years. "Doug is revered, feared and reviled in equal quantities, at times dividing people with his journalistic wrath. Yet there is no doubt this grandpa-esque bear keeps everyone abreast of anything and everything LGBT across the globe." (Daniel Witthaus, "Beyond Priscilla", Clouds of Magellan, Melbourne, 2014)