Kissing Doesn’t Kill: Greed and Indifference Do


According to Oxford Languages, the term pluralism is “a condition or system in which two or more states, groups, principles, sources of authority, etc., coexist.” In the past twenty years, a concept that this reminds me of this term is the neverending fight for LGBTQ+ rights within the United States, and also the conflicting issues that some in the Church always seem to bring up. In the article Pluralism and its Perils: Navigating the Tension between Gay Rights and Religious Expression, the article examines the doctrinal set of ideas of how courts resolve the tension between the two — gay rights and religion and “the principles of pluralism that are at stake” (Hunter). Aside from those who still argue religious reasoning, there has been a greater increase in the coexistence of those in the LGBTQ+ community and those who are not. 

In 1980, the term “queer art” was re-appropriated when it was seized back from oppressors to become the powerful term that describes the experiences of those in the LGBTQ+ communities (The Art Story). In this post, we look at a bus poster that was titled Kissing Doesn’t Kill: Greed and Indifference Do. This design was created in 1989 by Gran Fury for Art Against AIDS/On the Road and Creative Time, Inc. The bus poster was created during a time when the AIDS epidemic was still in its earlier years, and biases about the syndrome were at a big-time high. During these years, AIDS was initially perceived as a ‘white gay disease,’ and it was assumed that it primarily affected white gay and bisexual men (San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus). 

This poster portrays three different couples, a heterosexual couple and two homosexual couples, one being two males and one two females. The text represents the idea that AIDS is not the ‘wicked witch of the west’ it was considered to be, but instead, an immune disorder to be studied and better learned. The text is also meant to target those who are discriminatory towards the specific type of person they assume to have AIDS. This poster is important to graphic design as it shows a type of work that can be controversial to some but delivers an important message with few words.



Bunyan, A. D. M. (2023, August 9). Flamboyant homosexual. Art Blart _ art and cultural memory archive. 

Hunter, N. D. (2015). Pluralism and its Perils: Navigating the Tension between Gay Rights and Religious Expression. Georgetown Law - The Scholary Commons. 

Oxford languages and google - english. Oxford Languages. (n.d.). 

Queer Art Movement Overview. The Art Story. (n.d.). 

User, G. (2023, November 18). AIDS crisis 1980s: A timeline of the aids in the 80s: SFGMC. San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus.,white%20gay%20and%20bisexual%20men. 


Gran Fury's Poster Against AIDS
Gran Fury's Poster Against AIDS