Breast Cancer: How aware are we? Reply

By Leanne Signoriello – 1851 Staff


Design by Jamie McTigue

Everyone loves boobs. It may be intriguing to participate in the wearing of “Save the Boobies” bracelets or go braless for a day in October, but we all seem to get caught up in supporting the cause. Raising awareness of breast cancer is ex- tremely important, but there is much more to the topic that is often overlooked.

In addition to orange, red, and brown, pink has quickly become another color associated with October. With the amount of exposure that breast cancer receives, especially in October, it is easy to forget about the other life-changing ill- nesses that exist.

As someone who lost a parent to colon cancer, the third leading cause of cancer-related deaths with an estimated 100,000 deaths per year, it is frustrating seeing breast cancer being the only disease that gets so much press. According to the American Cancer Society, breast cancer takes half as many lives in comparison.

When we tune in to watch football each fall, we are reminded by the players’ pink attire that women should schedule their yearly mammo- grams to detect and prevent signs of cancer.

Few people know that October is also Down Syndrome Awareness month. According to the National Down Syndrome Society, Down syndrome affects nearly half a million people of all ages in the United States, however we have yet to see teams wear blue and yellow in sup- port of them.

Purchasing your team’s pink version of their logo does less than you think. The NFL donates only 5 percent of the money made off of pink products to breast cancer campaigns. Sure, some- thing is better than nothing, but advertisements seem more like a marketing scam than a way to find a cure.

For example, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a non-profit organization, gives less than 20 percent of its donations go to cancer re- search. Becoming more informed about where our money goes and how we can help will lead to more effective results.

By no means should we cease to support the fight against breast cancer. However, it is impor- tant that we are made more aware of other illness- related causes that are just as lethal.

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