Friday, October 8, 2010
Reply to Breast Cancer Article
In response to the article claiming the the bra strap messages and the purse messages used for Breast Cancer awareness was disrespectful the empowerment of women.
As far as I know, almost every one is aware of breast cancer.
I lost my brother, nephew, uncles, aunts to different cancers, most of them with names longer than a politician's speech. I don't see any campaigns to raise awareness of those cancers. And there wouldn't be much point, since most of them are a death sentence.
As a woman, I dont see breast cancer awareness as a woman issue but a health issue. It effects women, daughters, mothers, children, fathers, brothers and sons. It's a people issue. What gives women the right to make it just their issue? Was my father less crushed by brother's death than my mother? No.
Breast cancer and breast cancer marketing isn't about empowering women. It's about making people at least think about a topic they don't pay attention to anymore. You get so many pink boxes of cookies and touching tributes, you tune it out with your internal media filter. It gets the same attention as one of the environmental diatribes that pops up now and then. Just more refuse on the internet super highway.
Most people, if it doesn't effect them directly, just don't care or don't have enough interest to care about cancer. There are just to many
tragedies to choose from. Disaster relief, animal rescue, starving children...and breast cancer. BC competes for the attention of society and their money for research.
Hence the purse and bra straps to raise awareness.
Is it a little tacky? Yes. Does it work? To a certain extent.
So unless you can think of something better, here we are. If you have a solution for raising awareness for the overwhelmed public that will actually make them pause and think about breast cancer, let us know what it is. If not, then be quiet. You aren't helping.
And as for sitting next to a friend with cancer, I've spent years at hospices, dark bedrooms and hospitals waiting for people I loved to die. In some cases, hoping they would so they wouldn't hurt anymore. I resent anyone telling me I'm not doing enough to help people with cancer.
What do they know about my life?
Let them put their purses on their status. It doesn't hurt anyone and it might even help. It gives people something concrete to do that doesn't make them want to walk out into traffic so they don't have wait for someone's DNR to take effect.
If you want to empower women, become a big sister to a girl without good role models. She needs your help more than most.
As for my purse, I don't own one but if I did, it'd be next to me, just like the memories of those I lost.