Q & A With Bob Kunst

What does that mean? What was wrong with the program? Here we have 500 corporations, we have five million dollars worth of resources, we have the number-one program anywhere, we're feeding over 1000 people, we're handling everything under the sun from A to Z. And all the new grants and proposals - it was all happening. We were just waiting for that turning-around point to get out of this mess of the $30,000 in debt. There was nothing wrong, and there was nothing unethical. We were doing our jobs.

CAN finally announced it would forbid staff members from sitting on the board. Why not do this from the beginning? Why wait this long to organize as most nonprofit organizations do, with independent, volunteer boardmembers?

Because we didn't have boardmembers who were willing to give us the time. We were dealing on a crisis level, pulling together a brand new, outrageous program. We were taking on everybody from the White House and the World Health Organization on down. There was nothing hidden, ever. Tell me where there is a conflict of interest. The conflict of interest is if you're not providing the basics. If you can't pay an employee, i.e. Dominick and us, for one fucking week, too fucking bad. He was supposed to be an executive, not a schmuck. The bottom line is that he was selling us out to play out this little toilet game.

What has happened at Cure AIDS Now since you left?
You have seen the disintegration of what we tried to accomplish. The first thing they do is they cut out the testing program. We were an official test site for the state of Florida. You have no idea how long it took us to get this, to pull it out of the entrenchment of the establishment. Three fucking years. We're getting people coming in who would never go to the health department, and we're giving them stats that they can go back to the federal government with and get more money. Dade County goes to HRS and says, "Hey, we only have 50,000 HIV infections in Dade County." And I say, "Wait a minute. I know the figure is somewhere between 150,000 and 200,000." That was on a sign on the highway, which of course they took down. They've dismantled everything we worked to build.

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