Cancer – until you’ve had it, you don’t get it.

Clever, huh?

Anyway, in corresponding with a fellow cancer blogger, and reading her posts on the objectification of cancer and those who have it, I came up with the line and I figured I’d better “get it out there” before someone steals it!

Now, let me be clear: I don’t feel objectified.  In fact, I think I deal pretty darned well with people telling me I look so good, etc., and even telling me they find my attitude inspiring in some way.  But I do get what she’s saying.


Last Wednesday was another Chemo Wednesday, meaning I spent most of Thursday, Friday and Saturday in bed.  I think I’m coming out of it today.  In any event, while laying in bed, I happened across a documentary that both shocked and upset me.  Called Pink Ribbons Inc., it offers a highly critical look at the “pink ribbon culture” that surrounds breast cancer.

Its stark position is that breast cancer is NOT a shiny pink story of success.  Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and Avon aren’t really doing what you think they are, and they aren’t nearly as effective as you’d think.  And when you think about it, it’s not all that surprising.  Here’s the trailer:

Cause-related marketing from a pharmaceutical giant that also makes untold fortunes selling known carcinogens?

Yogurt tops that equal donations from a dairy company that also uses harmful hormones on its dairy-producing cows?

A marketing partnership between Komen and Kentucky Fried Chicken?  (By the way, if you watch the entire movie, notice how deftly Nancy Brinker, who heads up Komen doesn’t even reference the KFC name when asked about that failed effort.  She says something like, “The restaurant company approached us…”  Smoooooooth!)

Pink ribbons on health and beauty products with carcinogenic ingredients?

Pardon me, but that kinda sorta sounds like taking money from Saudi Arabia to fight terrorism.

Look, at the end of the day, it’s pretty impressive that Komen and its partners raise a gazillion dollars “for the cure,” but you’d think that, after all this time, we’d be a bit further along.


About Alan

F---ing Cancer since 2011.
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8 Responses to Cancer – until you’ve had it, you don’t get it.

  1. Wonderful Alan! I am reblogging this. And so glad you watched that film–been so long since I’ve seen it I forget to recommend it. Thank you for “getting” it.

  2. Pingback: Cancer – until you’ve had it, you don’t get it. | anotheronewiththecancer

  3. I’m interrupting the mutual admiration society up there^. I did not watch the video. But a personal pet peeve of mine is all these stupid memes on Facebook (many of which have some kind of ridiculous sexual innuendo) that are purportedly to “raise awareness of breast cancer”. Really? Knowing what color bra you wear or that you did it in the kitchen with the butler will make me more aware of breast cancer? Hate to be a scrooge, but I never participate in those things.

  4. Sharon Kuritzky says:

    All the money spent on pink shoes for football players could pay for a lot of reconstructive surgeries for women whose insurance won’t do that. Keep in mind that a high percentage of non-genetic breast cancers were caused by hormone replacement therapy, mine included. The studies that produced the earlier data that “proved” protection from cardiac events by the hormones was supported by the drug companies manufacturing the hormones. I don’t participate either.

    P.S. Who has a butler in the kitchen? Can he cook?

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